After a cold night and having said goodbye to the lovely people whose garden we slept in, we continue cycling. We are making slow progress, but after a while we have warmed up and we are getting in the groove again.
We take a break in a village where we use the toilet with a sink at an ice cream parlour. We refresh ourselves completely.
Later this day we touch 1000 km. The first 1000 of the still many kilometres to be made. We’ve been through so much, met people, had some setbacks and dealt with them well. We are really looking forward to continuing with a new environment around us because we can already see the mountains in the distance.
That night we sleep in one of the most beautiful places! We set up our tent in a nature reserve on a veranda of a forest ranger’s hut. We look out over a lake with the peaks of the first mountains in the background. What a feeling of happiness this gives! We go to sleep with butterflies in our stomach. We are really looking forward to cycling into the mountains.
The next day the mountains are still very far ahead of us, but they are getting closer and closer. We get a lot of energy from it. Slowly the mountains surround us and the first climbs are made.
And then… we cycled into Austria!! The second national border.. WOW! We cycled all the way here. Yesterday was a milestone but today’s feels even bigger.
That evening we sleep at a campsite and the next day we take a rest day. Here we meet a very nice Dutch couple. We are invited for dinner and the next day for coffee. We chat a bit. It’s wonderful to communicate in your native language with people you don’t know.
With difficulty we say goodbye to Jan and Anita. We leave in the afternoon. And now follow the ‘via Claudia Augusta’. We are treated to a beautiful mountain route. We find out that the route is more intended for mountain bikers and not for heavily packed touring bikes so it is tough. And yet I enjoy this the most. I did not expect that we would come to such beautiful quiet places, in the middle of nature without heavy traffic around us.
The mountains and nature bring magic!