Pyrenees/Costa Brava

Backroads – day 3

Tuesday. Day three of our bike tour and an anticipated hotel change day. I could not wait to check out of our hotel and check in to the next hotel, Mas Falgarona. After the morning route rap, Lulu reminded us that we would only be at Mas Falgarona for one night so we were not to have a “suitcase explosion” that evening.

Day three brought with it the longest and most difficult day of biking. Breakfast was served at 7am and we were on the road by 8am. Peter and I were starting to ask ourselves if we were really on vacation. Who gets up at 6:30am whilst on vacation?

We biked 53 miles with a total elevation gain of 4,643 feet and I burned 2,342 calories. That is a lot of calories. To recap:

  • Sunday: 20 miles with a total elevation gain of 1,969 feet. I burned 739 calories.
  • Monday: 38 miles with a total elevation gain of 2,296 feet. I burned 2,201 calories.

We climbed to La Molina ski resort and finally to the summit, the Coll de la Creueta and at nearly 1,890 m / 6,200 ft, it is one of the highest paved roads in the Pyrenees.

At some point we stopped for lunch and consumed some much-needed cerveza in the village of Ripoll. After a short rest, we hopped on our bikes for more torture. Upon completion of the day’s route, we boarded a coach bus which transported us to Figueres. Figueres is the birth and resting place of surrealist Salvador Dali.

Our stop was a cultural one and one I could have done without. I would have much rather relaxed at our hotel than visited the Dali Theatre-Museum. Below are a couple of Dali’s artworks. Look closely at the images. Dali’s art is not my taste.

Our visit to the museum was like the perfect storm of things I don’t enjoy followed literally by a thunderstorm.

We were extremely sweaty when we arrived at the museum and though I changed into different clothes, I was not dressed appropriately to be in public. I was extremely hungry. I was still sunburnt from Sunday. I don’t like museums. I really don’t like overcrowded museums like this one. We just wanted to be at our hotel by the pool with a glass of wine in my hand.

Approximately 20 minutes after entering the museum, Peter and I exited and found a nice graffiti brick wall to sit on as we waited an hour for the shuttle to our hotel. We boarded the shuttle and arrived at our hotel around 6:30pm, 12 hours after we woke for the day. The leaders had scheduled a wine tasting at 7:30pm, so all 19 of us rushed to shower immediately after arriving at the hotel and overloaded the water heating system and no one had hot water. A fine way to cap off a long and exhausting day.

Hot water issue aside, our room was awesome and the best room of our trip. The hotel is modern, our room was huge and the mattress was more soft than the mattresses at the previous two hotels. Our room had a thick stone wall.

Wine tasting and dinner were great and it was wonderful to stumble a few steps back to our room to recharge our bodies for an early start the following morning.

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