Look at that map. The main reason for tracking rides is to make interesting and artistic maps. All time favourite last year was one that looked like the map of Sardinia. But this is just a shambles!

Day 2 in Girona and we headed off to pick up the hire bikes. Bike Breaks Girona, although we booked via a third party. I think I’d book directly with them in future.

We had preloaded JT’s Garmin with the routes. The guy at the bike shop suggested out first best bet. It was a 25km route as plotted, but he gave us a paper map which showed an optional extension to 38km. That sounded much better, so off we went.

Problem number one; get out of Girona. You would think it would be easy. The Garmin gives you an option to navigate to the start of the route. But unless you reach the specific square centimetre it has allocated as the start, it doesn’t play the game! So nearly divorce courts before we covered the first 5km. Not helped by JT reloading the system and choosing a different route which started somewhere else!

I’m not much of a bike bore and I know very little about things like gears. I know enough to understand that a triple isn’t always better than a compact. But I’m still a bit peeved that JT has three lovely ranges of gears to choose from while I only have two. The bikes are Cannondale touring bikes, so not featherlight.

We weren’t that far into today’s cycle when I was bemoaning the lack of a big, fat granny gear… as he coasted effortlessly past me on a hill, suddenly I didn’t feel so bad that he was carrying the day pack 🙂

We finally made it out and on to the quiet roads. Lots of rich looking farms with activity on pear harvesting and some fancy restaurants on the way. Closed of course since we were still only late morning.

The route was to take us up round a volcanic plug. It was only when we reached the town that had been suggested for a coffee stop that we realised we were going the wrong way. A combination of using the Garmin, using the map for the longer loop (which was going in the opposite direction) and a bit of following signs for names you recognise without thinking how it fits with the plan. We were never exactly lost; but there were long periods when we weren’t where we thought we were.

We did decide to do an extra loop on the way home; but what started as 25km could be 38km turned into 58km with about 800m of climbing. Lots of lovely quiet roads and, so far at least, overtaking drivers who give you lots of space.

A bit of a disaster for dinner though after we returned; lots of the tapas had cheese or cream which JT can’t eat and wasn’t stated on the menu. Then a tortilla espanol which took almost 45 minutes and 6 reminders to arrive and it was basically raw. Send back. Give up. Move on.

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