Day 5 – Neuchatel

That moment when your Garmin diverts you from the nice rolling main road you’re on.

That moment when you have a slight hunch the main road may be better, but you stick to plan A after all. 

That moment when plan A turns out to be a ridiculously steep path that may or may not be suited for bicycles. Like, 18% steep. Like, every horizontal meter equals 1,80 vertical meter. Draw that in a triangle and you get it.

Perspective is shit, but I promise that was 18%

That moment when you half cycle, half walk that path anyway and all the way up you keep having doubts, so you check your Garmin again and plan A turns out to be not plan A after all.

That moment when you hike down that super steep path, get on the ‘cycle road’ you were supposed to be at and again have some doubt about the quality of the road.

That moment when you go on for a few km anyway, try to decide at what point it really makes no more sense to keep going in hopes for a better path and deep down you know that moment has long passed.

It really won’t get better (it got worse)

That moment when you accept defeat, hike all that shit back and get yourself to the main road again.

That moment when the main road turns out to have another nasty climb and all the way on top you finally remember why your Garmin routed you off: a prohibited tunnel.

So basically that’s how an otherwise wonderful day made a very sudden 180. When finally reaching Switzerland earlier that day, I still had every intention to do the next 100km to CP2 before midnight. My lack of sleep hadn’t been noticeable and the legs were doing well.But when that huge navigational error occurred, I lost a good 90 minutes and all hopes of making it to Grindelwald while also be assured of a heavy meal, a shower and a bed. So once at the start of the tunnel, all confused, tired, fed up and on the verge of tears, I decided to accept whatever the consequence (most probably a time penalty) and use the SOS sidewalk to walk to the other side of the tunnel. 

I then and there accepted that CP2 that night would be off the table. Food, a shower and a bed were now no. 1 priority, because the whole situation clearly proved that I wasn’t in a state of making the right decisions. Initially I thought of pushing for Bern, but then my Garmin beeped it was almost out of battery, as was my power bank, as was my phone. So I read that as a sign on the wall and am now resigned for the day. 

Tomorrow is CP2. That itself should be OK, it’s the parcour that follows afterwards that should be interesting. To give you an idea, the elevation is more or less the same as I rode today, except it’s in 70km instead of 180km. I’ll send some sun towards The Netherlands and Belgium, because I prefer to do those climbs without the sweltering heat.

Oh and just to let you know, despite the setbacks here and there, I’m enjoying myself a lot! 🙂 I hope you are too!


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