Location: Nova Bystrice
Km on the clock: 1,390
Just a few kilometers behind the Czech border I made my first 1.000 kilometers on this journey. It took me only two weeks of time. I know I could have been way faster but since I stayed in Hamburg, Berlin and Dresden for a few nights I was happy to be here by now. It was the second time ever in my life that I cycled that far. Two years earlier I cycled the length Germany on my crappy old mountain bike which also took me two weeks but without any rest days. Back then I had limited time and basically rushed from on place to another.
This time is different since I basically have unlimited time. It makes this trip way more enjoyable and my new bicycle also helps a lot. I really had no idea before that there are such big differences in sense of bikes. I thought: I wish I had this bike already two years ago. That would have made my life so much easier, as I reached the 1.000 kilometers mark. Back then I simply took all the equipment that I already had and just set off which was pretty much the same approach for the preparation of this trip. It works perfectly fine. However, meanwhile I really appreciated my new bicycle.
I arrived in Prague the next day and stayed for a few nights. Prague was the first place on this trip which I was really excited about to visit. I've been here before and always liked it. As soon I got connected to some free Wi-Fi I booked the cheapest hostel that I could find. Getting there was quite a challenge since the provided address led me to the wrong place. The hostel manager sent me the right directions via text message after I called her.
I met Matt from the U.S. at the hostel. He was also a long term traveler and we clicked right away. Together we explored Prague's nightlife. Throughout the days I did lots of sightseeing which also included lots of walking. A lot. My feet hurt at the end of the days which kind of made it more exhausing than sitting in the saddle and riding all day. :D
The city center was packed with tourists. Too much for me. That's probably why I enjoyed walking alongside the Vltava River and discovering the less touristy markets most. The best thing about Prague are the countless the street artists. They're just everywhere and it was a lot of fun to watch their performances - especially the buskers.
The day when I left Prague I made it almost to the city of Votice. Sunshine and rain alternated continuously. I put on and off my rain clothes numerous times. Although I didn't get wet from the rain I was covered in my own sweat. I wondered how much sense it actually made to switch clothes all the time. :D
I followed the cycling trail signs between Votice and Tabor which turned out as the hardest ride that I ever did in my life so far. The road went constantly up and down wherat going downhill was of course a lot of fun. My little bicycle device stated 54 kilometer per hour as I bombed down a hill. Climbing up the steep mountain roads on the other hand was everything else but fun - especially with a fully loaded bicycle. It felt like ages to reach the top of the mountains. Sometimes I pedaled up the hills with an enormous speed of less than 7 kilometers per hour. I was exhausted. I didn't even know if I should laugh or cry as I reached another peak. I was so happy that I made it up here but at the same time I could already see the next steep section which made me want to cry. I took a deep breath, rolled down the hill and tackled the next one.
Thus far I usually covered 80-100 kilometers per day but that day I only made 70. However, I was more exhausted than any other day before. It took me one more day to leave Czech Republic and to make it into Austria.
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