A few more photos of Spain Cycling 2018

•July 1, 2018 • Leave a Comment

Spain_25-Apr-18_085I stopped for coffee in the small, VERY HILLY village of Setenil de las Bodegas.

 

Spain_24-Apr-18_078The old bridge in Ronda

 

Spain_24-Apr-18_077The blue town of Juzcar

 

Spain_24-Apr-18_071Just another great cycling road in Andalucia

 

Spain_24-Apr-18_070Whitewashed, perched villages are everywhere

 

Spain_24-Apr-18_001These goats bounded in front of me.  It was all I could do to grab my phone and shoot.

 

Spain_22-Apr-18_038These last two are of the killer climb up to Torcal de Antequera,

and me with my rental bike.

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Why I love cycling in Spain

•April 20, 2018 • 3 Comments

Im cycling in Spain for 10 days. Here’s the route:

 

…and this is why Spain is a great cycling destination…

Great roads,

 

Lots of climbing,

 

Little traffic,

 

 

Lots of respect for cyclists (could use this sign on Old Santa Fe Trail),

 

Picturesque hilltop villages,

 

And yea, some really great cycling roads

 

A Week in San Miguel de Allende

•November 17, 2017 • Leave a Comment

Go to post by clicking photo:SanMiguel_2017-14

Cycling the Length of Japan: Hokkaido

•September 21, 2017 • 3 Comments

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Hokkaido is a really big island. Our route occupied a thin vertical sliver down the western side of this vast Prefecture.

 

 

 

LOJ-Hokkaido-4Our group

8 days of open spaces, farms, some nice climbs, lakes, and some busy roads circumnavigating the edge of the Uchiura bay.  Oh, and that particular section had about 13 tunnels out of the total of about 20, with another dozen or so “galleries” (kinda half tunnels).

A 2.5 km tunnel… just peddel like mad.

A 2.5 km tunnel… just pedal like mad.

In all, we cycled 492 miles (787 kms) and climbed 23,747 ft (7420 mts) and there was rain day.LOJ-Hokkaido-8

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Hokkaido is an OK place to ride, a bit unvaried with lots of farms and open spaces. The roads are good, some great, but some are simply ridable. I’d say there are more young Japanese bike tourers here riding with fully loaded panniers and camping gear then anywhere in Japan. Apparently, going to Hokkaido cycling – which is not really on the radar for most Japanese and is considered a remote place – is a thing to do for young Japanese boys.

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HOWEVER, the food here is amazing. Wonderful seafood: scallops, uni, small fishes, crabs, plus some wonderful ramen and udon. The udon is particularly nice, being light and subtle. I could forget the cycling and simply do a food tour of Hokkaido and it would be fantastic.

LOJ-Hokkaido-3above, sorting baby scallops so the can be tossed into the sea and become these…LOJ-Hokkaido-1-8

more wonderful Hokkaido seafood…

 

Next, Honshu….

The Length of Japan Cycling Tour is about to begin…

•September 2, 2017 • 5 Comments

The Length of Japan cycling tour starts next week.  I’ll be the ride leader for our 30 day journey from the northern tip of Hokkaido, Cape Soya, to the southern tip of Kyushu, Cape Sata.  It’ll be over 1,600 miles (2,600 km’s) with more than 100,000 vertical feet of climbing (30,000 mt’s) on (mostly) fantastic roads.

There will be plenty of updates and photos here during the next month…

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Kochi – Katsuo and Keirin…

•May 25, 2017 • 1 Comment

A few days in Kochi.  One of our favorite meals in Japan is katsuo no tataki, or bonito seared over a flame of burning straw.  This is the signature dish of this region. Cooking it looks like no fun. 

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A few simple examples of elegance in Japanese design…

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Then we went to the velodrome where they hold Keirin races. Keirin is Japanese cycle track-racing for the sole purpose of gambling.  Kinda like the horse race track in the US. The only women were working, 100% of the betting was by men. Unfortunately, the actual race was being held at another track, so these guys were betting and watching it on video monitors. There are velodromes all all over Japan, and the race schedule moves around the country all year long. 

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And then this: on the street, delivering fish, with the truck running, the woman is whacking off the head of an eel. 

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And of course the price of specialty fruits and vegetables. About $36 for a box of tomatoes.  And these were NOT the most expensive I saw, yesterday I saw a box of 20 small tomatoes for $50!!  They better be damn good, 

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A few days of cycling on Shikoku

•May 23, 2017 • Leave a Comment
After finishing our three weeks in the Zen Temple, I’m now doing a three-day cycle tour on Shikoku, my favorite Japanese island to ride. Day one was a short ride from the Yamatahama ferry to Uchiko, a ride I’ve done before. 
 
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We went to a paper making factory in Uchiko. This is hard, repetitive work.
 
Day two was also relatively short (only 40 miles) but was a monster climbing day on a touring bike (just under 6000 feet). The roads were (mostly) very very good and it ended up being a really great ride.
 
This is my first springtime cycling trip in Japan; usually I ride in the fall when the rice is being harvested, now it’s being planted.
 
 
This area has lots of covered bridges
 
 

And of course, some great cycling roads
 

I spent the night in Yusuhara, a small town in the mountains. This is my hotel…
And the Yusuhara municipal building
 
 
 
 
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