Corsica 2014 – Day 3

The day dawned much cooler as it had rained in the evening last night. Despite having been fed up with Corsica due to the heat and burnt scenery we drove onward towards Porto expecting to drive back in the evening to catch our bail out ferry the next day. As we drove though, the scenery improved and it stayed at a reasonable temperature. We were soon driving through a cool pine forest. Then we arrived on a pass with rocky mountains all around and a view down a big valley full of pines and more funky rocks. After a quick snack below the pass we drove down and were more and more impressed with what we saw. An awesome deep canyon was on our right with amazing red rock. We could see glimpses of the sea from the road and we descended into a little coastal town Porto.

We then continued along the coast heading North. The road was truly impressive, narrow, with big drops down from red rock pillars on either side of the road, through green vegetation to the deep blue sea below. It would be amazing to ride. We drove on to the Fongo valley where we parked the car and walked along a fantastic river filled with deep swimming holes. The water was very warm, warm enough that I could lazily swim backwards and forwards for some time, jumping from the rocks occasionally. We spent the afternoon at the river and I floated and plunged down the length of it on our return to the car. Very very nice.

We drove back to Porto in the evening and camped there.

 

Little pig, little pig (Corsica)Canyon (Corsica)

Above left: We drove on the next day with the plan to head back to the ferry in the evening. However, as we drove, things improved. Which is not at all related to this photo… The road often had piggies, or some other animals on either side, and often in the middle. Above right: Anyway, we had driven through forest which was nice and cool and this made us think that Corsica wasn’t actually so bad. Then we found an amazing rocky canyon, which made us think it was really quite good.

Smiley Leonie (Corsica)Cris and Leonie smiling (Corsica)

Above left: So much so that Leonie smiled. Above right: And then we both smiled.

 

Leonie and sea behind (Corsica)View down to the water (Corsica)

Above left: We drove from our camp to Porto on the West Coast of the island. The canyon above Porto, the roads, and views to the sea near the town were amazing. Above right: Did I mention the views from the road were fantastic.Corsica, great place.

Cris diving (Corsica)Leonie in the water (Corsica)

Above left: We headed off to the Fango valley as we had read that there were good swimming opportunities there. There certainly was… There was a river with deliciously warm water and lots of pools to jump in to. Above right: Even Leonie broke out her bikini.

Cris floating down the river (Corsica)View of the river (Corsica)Mr goat (Corsica)

Above left: And I swam back down the river. Above middle: It looks quite nice doesn’t it? Above right: We got acquainted with the wildlife on the way back to Porto in the evening.

Beach (Corsica)

Above: We had a hunt for camping at this beach but the camp ground had closed. The beach was still looking pretty good though.

Corsica 2014 – Day 2

We left our camp site in the morning and drove South heading into the hills where we thought it would be cooler. It wasn’t. It was extremely hot, dry and barren. We found a camp site as far up as we could and went for a walk in the early evening. There were some cool rock formations and things to amuse us. However, in the evening we decided that we’d rather risk the weather in Slovenia and booked a ferry for the fourth day back to Italy.

Picnic at the camp site (Corsica)Nosey (Corsica)

Above left: We found a camping ground as high as we could at around 1900 m. Unfortunately it was still really hot. Fed up with the place we booked a ferry back to Italy in the evening. Above right: However, before doing this we had a bit of fun in the hills.

Mr Lizard (Corsica)Cris jumping (Corsica)

Above left: The island was full of these little guys. Above right: We went for a walk in the hills and found some rocks to amuse ourselves on.

Going for a walk (Corsica)Leonie and a rock (Corsica)

Above left: Leonie in walking mode. It was a little cooler by this time. Above right: We found more rocks for posing.

Corsica 2014 – Day 1

Our plan was to do some cycle touring and tramping in Slovenia… the weather persuaded us not to do this however. Instead we decided that we’d prefer to have some sun so yesterday we spent the day driving from Lindau to Livorno in Italy, and heading over on the evening ferry to Corsica. We made it to bed around 1 am after driving north from Bastia and finding a camp site in the dark.

We left the camp site today around 10:30. It was a nice pleasant temperature under the trees at the camp but once we got down to the road that weaves around the perimeter of the island we realised it was really quite warm. Not quite Mallorca warm but warm enough that you’d say – well it could probably be a little cooler. We road North and decided to skip the walk we had planned and head up into the hills where we decided it should be a bit cooler. It wasn’t. In fact it was a big sweat fest. The views were quite nice though and many of the buildings looked quite picturesque, although some just looked run down. The landscape looked dry although they’d apparently had torrential rain a few days ago.

Eventually we’d had enough of the sweating and stopped in a tiny town with a little supermarket and bought lots of junk food and stuffed ourselves for a while. I stood in the fountain for a bit and then we found a tiny patch of shade and sat in it for a while. After a good while of lazing we headed back over a pass to the East side of the island, and back South to the camp site again. 80 km completed with about 1000 vertical metres.

Leonie sets off around Cap Corse (Corsica)Leonie and fig tree (Corsica)Leonie and big building (Corsica)

Above left: We headed off for a tour around Cap Corse on our first day in Corsica. It was hot and the sea was blue. Above middle: We discovered fig trees beside the road along the way much to Leonie’s enjoyment. Above right: We also found some buildings to look at.

Leonie on the road (Corsica)Taking a break (Corsica)Fruit (Corsica)

Above left: And empty road. Above middle: It was so hot that we stopped in the afternoon and hid in the shade in a small town. There we consumed much fatty food and juice. Above right: We bought some tasty stone fruit.

Heading up to the pass (Corsica)Arriving at Bocca di Santa Lucia (Corsica)Riding in the evening (Corsica)

Above left: Then it was off again in the hot evening. Above middle: Leonie reaches “Bocco di Santa Lucia” at an impressive 381 m above sea level! Above right: It was a little cooler in the evening which made riding more enjoyable.

Road cycling Switzerland June 2014 – Day 1

Leonie and I had camped Friday night in Zernez in Switzerland after driving down after work. The plan was to do some road cycling so we set off at the not-so-early hour of 11 am towards Stelvio Pass in Italy. It was a hot sunny day with not a cloud in the sky and we sweated our way up and down over Ofenpass, followed by a long but quite scenic slog up Umbrailpass and finally across the border into Italy. From there it was just a small ascent to the top of Stelvio Pass which turned out to be overrun by motor cyclists, road cyclist, and other tourists.

We had a short stop at the top and then descended and started the long slog back to Ofenpass. We arrived there around 7 pm and rolled the rest of the way down to the bus stop near the tunnel to Lago di Livigno. Leonie was very keen to take the bus from there and after all we did have 3100 vertical metres in our legs by then, so we headed back by bus to Zernez, cooked dinner and crawled into the tent.

Cycling to Stelvio PassCycling to Stelvio Pass

Above left: We set off from Zernez early in the morning. Well, early it wasn’t, but it was at least still morning – just. We headed off towards Ofenpass. Above right: Arriving a little after midday. It seems the pass is also known as Pass dal Fuorn.

Cycling to Stelvio PassCycling to Stelvio PassCycling to Stelvio Pass

Above left: From the first pass we headed down from 2149 m back into the green lands – and the heat. Above middle: Much heat with snow up above. Above right: Eventually we began to climb again. This time we headed up Umbrailpass.

Cycling to Stelvio PassCycling to Stelvio PassCycling to Stelvio Pass

Above left: Which started out nice and green. Above middle: And got more snowy on the way up. Above right: There was a fair bit of snow at the pass. From there it was a very small dip down into Italy and then up to Stelvio Pass.

Cycling to Stelvio PassCycling to Stelvio PassCycling to Stelvio Pass

Above left: Stelvio was overrun with tourists and cycle tops for sale. Above middle: This is a view looking down the side of the pass that we didn’t ride up. It’s a mix between green summery cycling and some ski touring on the right. Above right: Leonie arrives at the top of the pass.

Leonie at Stelvio Pass (Italy)Cris at Stelvio Pass (Italy)Us at Pass dal Fuorn (Italy)

Above left: Snappage in the sun. Above middle: Interestingly it looks like summer has arrived on one side of the valley but winter is still there on the other. Above right: Not looking too tired yet, despite being rather tired.

 

Above: Only 1300 metres to go!

And Strava says: