Saturday, June 18, 2011

Day 25 - Europe 2011

Day 25 - Saturday, June 18, 2011 - Langenau to Hochstadt - Trip 72.84 kms Time 4:21:02

Got up at 7:00 as per usual. Day didn't look very promising as the skies were very overcast. Went down for b'fast at 7:30. No one else around except for the waiter. I did see a family of 3 heading back to their room after having had their b'fast. I was able to make myself a ham and cheese sandwich for later along with a pre-wrapped portion of Brie an apple and a hard boiled egg. Returned to my room and finished packing my panniers. The baggage cart I had used earlier was still in the hallway so I loaded my bags onto it and took them down to the lobby. The waiter (now receptionist) was waiting to collect my 69 E for the room. I paid him and went off to collect my bike in the garage where I had left it yesterday. It was still there all by itself.
While checking out I had asked for directions to Leipheim in order to get back on the Danube trail. While checking my Danube Bike Trail Guide I noticed that Weissingen was much closer to Langenau and on the Danube trail. I set the GPS for W. and headed out at 8:50. I missed a turn and had to turn around and go back about 1/2 a km which was no big deal as the road was paved and flat. After W I headed for Leipheim, Gunzburg, Reisensburg, Offingen, Petersworth, Gundelfingen, Lauingen, Dillingen and Steinheim. It was all pretty well flat farm land mostly paved with some hard pack stretches. Lots of dark clouds and rain off and on. I stopped at a Backerei in Dillingen for lunch. In spite of the miserable weather I decided to sit outside at the sidewalk table and chairs to keep an eye on my bike. The wind started to pick up and I had to go inside as it was to cold to sit outside. The young girl asked if I was going to be much longer or something to that effect. I had bought a cheese brotchen and a chocolate milk and was struggling to finish the large bottle of chocolate milk. I noticed there was a sign on the door saying that the shop would close at 12:30 on Saturday. It was 12:15 and I guess she wanted to close up. I quickly finished off my drink and she didn't waste anytime locking up and leaving early.
It started raining just as I was leaving for Steinheim so I had to find some shelter outside a bank and put on my covers. I also put on my leg and arm warmers and my rain jacket.
On the way to Steinheim the trail split up. I checked my guide and it said there were two routes to follow. I chose to take the trail on the right but somehow I managed to end up at the Dilligen Golf Course which was quite deserted due to the rain. I found shelter in the Practice Range shelter. There was actually someone having a lesson. I reset my GPS for Steinheim and set off in the rain. Apparently I wasn't to far off track - about 8-10 kms - but unfortunately it really started tipping down. I found shelter under an overhanging tree where there was a bit of a dry spot and waited for 10-15 minutes before setting off again for Steinheim which was only another 2-3 kms away. I finally made it to Steinheim only to discover there was only one Bett and Breakfast but there was no one home. I found shelter at a BierStubbe, went in and asked about finding an hotel. The guy told me I had to go to Hochstadt which was another 3 kms further down the road. The rain had tappered off a bit so I set off for Hochstadt which sure enough was just 2 and a bit kms away. I saw a lot of signs for "Zimmer Frei" but the first place I came to was Hotel Berg. It looked very inviting so I went in to check it out. A single room with b'fast and Wi-Fi was 43 E for the night. I decided I'd had enough foul weather for the day and checked in.
I was told to take my bike around the back where I would find a garage. The lady who had checked me in was waiting there for me to guide me back through the hotel and up to my room. She also offered me an ISOKIRSCH SPORTIVE-DRINK which I gladly accepted. I would much more have appreciated a beer but she said the bar in the Italian restaurant next door wouldn't be opened until 5:00 PM.
I was able to connect to the Internet without much trouble and checked my e-mail. I also e-mailed Johnson Ins. and asked them to extend my coverage as I was approaching the 5 week minimum length of time I was allowed to be away on a trip at the normal rate.
I did my daily laundry and lay down for a nap but the church bells were making such a racket plus there was a lot of traffic noise.
I decided to go out for a walk since the rain had stopped. Saw a huge church and a couple of drunks sitting on a bench in the main square with a bag of beer bottles. They had already managed to smash one of the bottles. I now had a decision to make - would I go back to the hotel for dinner at the Italian restaurant or would I try the Asia/Chinese Restaurant. There didn't seem to be any customers at the Asia restaurant and I had noticed that the Italian restaurant was busy. I headed back to the hotel and ended up having a pretty good pizza and a glass of red wine for dinner plus ice cream for dessert all for 8.10 E.
Went up to my room and typed up my blog for the day. Hope the weather improves for the ride to Donauworth and hopefully on a bit further tomorrow. My room smells like a laundromat!!!Cheers, Roly

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