February 24, 2024

Day 58: Rincón de la Victoria (Cycling)

Headlines: A tough ride with a fantastic final descent!

The problem with taking two separate Michelin scenic roads and linking them without much thought is that you can be surprised just how tough the climbing is going to be when you encounter that there linking road.

The early stages of the first scenic road (climb length about 21 kilometres) was a bit of a rollercoaster with some steep ramps, but eventually became a steady climb of about 7%.

The second climb of the day, which occurred on the linking road, was only about seven kilometres in length but, boy oh boy, did it have some long steep ramps, most of which occurred in the first half and, included a "sting in the tail"!. Luckily I was on my own, otherwise I could have been riding with some unhappy folk threatening to stab pins in voodoo dolls (ones with a remarkable resemblance to my good self) on their return to base camp!

However, I'm sure that by the time we'd descended from Puerto del León (elevation 900 metres) to Malaga (near enough sea level), I think I'd be forgiven. This descent is one of the best I've ridden for a long long time. I highly recommend it. It is wide and very flowy.

Before reaching the aforementioned descent, and prior to that, the third climb, I cycled through Colmenar:

Fortunately, I had to walk down this road, because 1) it was very very steep; and 2) it was one way upwards!

And, here's a photo I took shortly before arriving in Colmenar (looking northwards):

One more (Colmenar):

You may have noticed the dark clouds - I consulted two weather Apps to find out the predicted lunchtime forecast for Colmenar, as this would be my most northerly point: one forecast predicted showers the other predicted no rain - I wanted to do the ride, so opted to go with the latter, especially as it usually gives rather pessimistic forecasts. Fortunately, I did not get wet.

However, it was only 8°C (according to the garmin, navigational aid) riding into a headwind into Colmenar, compared with nearer 20°C at the coast whilst cycling with a tail wind and the sun at my starboard quarter! I did feel pretty cold earlier in the ride, particularly descending mainly in shadow, on my way to the second climb of the day, and it took quite a while to warm up again - it's not all sunshine out here you know!!!

On return to the van I have cycled 3 miles further than I have driven since leaving the U.K: 1,909 miles!

  • Distance driven: 0
  • Distance cycled: 90 kilometres
  • Weather: see text above and photos!

Today's route: