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Climbing my way into Macedonia, 130Km and 2300 hight meters

Am i ready for a new day in the mountains? How will my body react after these long days with climbs? Will the weather be as bad as they report? These questions are running through my head, I know at the same time that these mountains are small compared to what I will pass on Tuesday and Wednesday.

20140914_124132I’m waking up in Kyustendil after a nice evening yesterday. I wasn’t too late in bed. I guess I was more than tired after the hard climbs. It’s no problem when you’re in the mountain, but when you sit down to relax, it just hits you in the face.

Breakfast is ready. I’m sitting in the restaurant and are eating at the same time as I’m writing yesterdays blog post. They report rain for the next days, including today.

My plan is to reach Berovo in Macedonia. I know that it’s quite a few mountains, so I have given me an option for a shorter distance if the weather is too bad.

20140914_132026I’m on the road. I’m cycling with my challenge4ou 3/4 bicycle pants today. The temperature have fallen a bit and I want to protect my knees.

The road follows a river down a valley towards Boboshevo and Blagoevgrad. I stop in Boboshevo to have some food. I cycle over the river to a restaurant. They don’t speak english and are not familiar with my finger language. She walks over to one of the young guests, the guest translates the menu for me and I order myself an omelette.

I’m on the road again. I’m now cycling towards Blagoevgrad. At this point I will go off the main road and start to climb the mountains towards the Macedonian boarder. The road to Blagoevgrad has heavy traffic. IMG_3586I get the same feeling as I had a couple of days ago. You see one totally damaged car, the service truck are picking it up. At the same time as you can see the two girls that own the car is sitting on the other side of the road, luckily unharmed.

It’s starting to rain when I’m climbing towards Macedonia. I’m cycling through Selishte and some other small communities. The people are looking at me while I’m coming there without rain clothes. The temperature is not bad, so I figured I would be more comfortable without the rain jacket.

The rain stops while I’m cycling further. I’m passing a boarder police again. He stops the car ahead of me and lets me pass. I’m climbing and climbing, slowly but steady. The views out in the valley are beautiful.

I stop for some pictures. You can see the whole valley, beautiful waters, mountains and Blagoevgrad all the way back to where I started my climb.

20140914_170808The Macedonian boarder is getting closer. I’m at around 1160 meters above sea level now. The first control are asking me if I have anything to report to the customs. I say no, I’ve only got what I need to survive. He lets me go through.

At the Macedonian boarder they are checking my passport and then the same as before when I pass the customs. Of course they ask me where I’m going.

It’s about 10Km downhill now. Cycling down to Delchevo. It’s Sunday and most of the supermarkets are closed. I stop at a few small markets, but they don’t accept visa and I can’t find an atm. I decide to continue towards Berovo. I have about 30Km left, but are already running low on my water.

20140914_172511The road is going uphill. Not steep, but slowly taking me higher and higher. I’m just drinking a little bit everytime I need water. I need to keep this as long as possible. I have a red bull on my back pocket, but decides to keep it unopened as long as I can.

It’s getting more and more steep. I’m out of water now. It can’t be long again. I know that it’s supposed to be some downhill at the end. Finally I reach the top. I drink the red bull to get some energy to continue the last 11Km. It’s just one small hill left, then it’s downhill most of the way.

Finally there’s a gas station. I stop to buy some chocolate, water and drinks. I’m refilling as I should cycle 200Km more, I’m so thirsty.

After 10Km with downhill, I’m finally cycling into Berovo. I arrive at the hotel. A beautiful and big hotel. It looks like a old alpen style. It’s really cozy.

I eat a good meal at the restaurant, enjoying some well deserved glasses of wine at the same time as I’m on skype with Lillian.

I’ve cycled 130Km and 2300 hight meters today as well. It’s time for bed!

Picture album from todays ride:

GPS Data from todays ride:

About Stian Torland

Elsker turer, utfordringer og fysiske aktiviteter. Har gjort det til ein livsstil å utfordre andre til ting de normalt ikkje ville gjort. Driver Challenge4you.com som er et nettsted som skriver om turer, eventyr og utfordringer. Mine fullførte utfordringer og hovedmål: *Nordkapp-Lindesnes: 2700Km, tid: 18 dager - 2011 *Danmark-Italia: 2500Km, tid: 18 dager - 2012 *Trondheim-Oslo: 542Km, tid: 22t 55m - 2013 *The Iron Curtain Trail: 10000Km, tid: ca 4mnd - 2014