Exodus MVZ – final days

Posted: July 30th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: deardiary | Tags: , , | No Comments »

Well the cycling is over and it’s been a pretty hectic last few days so I didn’t really write detailed notes on each day as I had in the past, so what follows is from memory a couple days past.

Day 9 – Getting to Gyor

Even though our hotel was less than 5km from our planned starting point in Halaszi we had to take the transfer there rather than biking, which was something of an annoyance for the group, especially since we only had 40km of cycling planned and by this point everyone could knock that distance off in no time. Exodus policy against adding distance to the published itinerary was the quoted reason, but some flexibility probably would have served them better as the act of loading everyone on the bus, driving, then unloading the bikes takes time and just frustrates the clients.

So after this rather pointless song and dance we were again travelling along a “Hungarian Gentleman”, and it was as promised… flat, gentle, and easy to ride although swelteringly hot.

After our relatively brief ride, it only took about two and a half hours for even the slowest members of the group we had arrived in Gyor, which seemed like a nice little city with a big square full of children playing in water jets which were installed in the square itself. Unfortunately it was way too hot to explore as we had arrived at the peak of the day and I did nothing in Gyor other than find a patio, a cold beer, and afterwards on my way back to the mini-bus I enjoyed an ice-cream, which I’m happy to report the Hungarians really know a thing or two about making.

The trip itinerary then called for a transfer to a place called Esztergom, so we then spent a sweltering two hours in the mini-bus driving there.

Day 10 – The last day

Esztergom was apparently the old capital of hungary, many many years ago, and sports a huge Basilica on the top of a hill. Unfortunately it doesn’t really look like there has been much effort to maintain anything other than the Basilica, and while there is a certain charm in the faded glory of the past reflected in the buildings, after the other towns we had passed through where so much care has been taken to keep the buildings in good repair it was somewhat depressing.

Thankfully we left Esztergom without needing to take a transfer, starting our ride along an extremely pleasant bicycle path right along the Danube. It was a pity when that path ended, going for a mere 10km, as after that we rode along what became a progressively busier road. We were obviously making our way through suburbs of Budapest, and our previous pattern of “Meet at the start of the next village” broke down as the villages were closer and closer together. Finally it became a little too silly to stop all the time and we all rode the last 10km to Szentendre at our own pace, which was good because you didn’t notice the heat so much when you were moving but as soon as you stopped it was like stepping into an oven.

Arriving in Szentendre at about 1:30pm we were given the option of waiting until 5pm for a ferry down the Danube or taking a transfer to Budapest, riding into Budapest was not an option and likely could be classified as suicidal given the behaviour of drivers as we got closer to the city. I opted for the transfer as it was too damned hot to hang out for 3 hours and I really wanted a shower.

Day 11 – postscript

And that’s it! I added up all the kilometers measured by the app on my phone and we did about 420km, while those who elected to ride in the rain out of Vienna probably did about 30km more, so all in we were supposed to do 450km.

I’m going to put together my overall thoughts about the trip, as well as links to all the data I collected (maps, spreadsheets with km’s, elevations, etc) in the next post to sum everything up. I have mixed feelings about this trip, but I’ll try to put it all into writing soon.

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