Day 43: Mainschleife 1
Before leaving for the US, I spontaneously decided to visit my family back in Germany. Fortunately, my visit coincided with a holiday and Nora could take a day off. So we ended up doing a bike tour with my dad around our home region of Lower Franconia. It was a magnificent trip, with beautiful weather. I discovered many facets about my home that I did not know about before.
Before the trip, though, I inspected our bikes. I have a Canyon Big Bear mountain bike from back when I was fourteen (I think that is also about the last time I washed it). I gave the bike a good clean and bought some chain lube at Wolfi’s. Ironically, I ended up buying the same wet lube I have in Den Haag, and also managed to break the damn cap off it. I have had quite a sever eight in the bike for a long time. After washing it, I found the reason for it: One spoke had broken out!
OK, not to worry too much, Nora also has a mountain bike that should fit me. So I start washing it, too. After all the dirt has come off, I find yet another big problem: Her frame is toast! The Ghost frame has a severe crack running down the steerer tube. So this bike’s no good, either! Fortunately, I can combine the good parts of both Mountainbikes to form one good bike for myself.
The next day, we set off. We say that we will see how far we come, plan for an overnight stay (I brought my bike packing bags), and will book accommodation along the way. This way, we do not have a fixed target that we have to reach. The route is a suggestion from my dad, following the course of the river Main.
And what a ride it was!
We pass beautiful villages such as Volkach, all on good asphalt, which is either bike-exclusive or with very minimal motorized traffic. A couple KMs Würzburg, we plan for the evening. All Airbnb accommodations were a bit ridiculously priced and not too nice. Upon almost selecting one, Nora had the good remark that we might find a hotel for that price, and indeed, we did (on booking.com). That hotel lay nicely alongside our route, in the picturesque town of Veitshöchheim. The hotel Haus zum Schlosspark even had 3 beds (in separate rooms), and a bike shed, perfect!
Riding through Würzburg had a bit of the usual German problem with bike path: There is no general concept for them. Which means you have the nicest bike path for a couple km, then all of a sudden there is the odd tunnel that you cannot cycle through and you have to take a huge detour. On which there is no cycle path, of course. Despite that, especially going over the bridge in Würzburg (also good point to stop and blend in with the local crowd of drinking an Aperol Spritz or Rose) was really a special moment in the closing of this first day.
In Veitshöchheim, we found a really good restaurant (going purely by rating on Google Maps) and each had a local Schoppen (a wine from Franconia). The service and food in the restaurant Rokoko were excellent, but even so, on a Thursday night, we were almost the only guests in it.