Day 20 Taillade-Lloret de Mar

It was getting on for 10 when I finally left. I was still a bit unsure which way to go, as when I had asked Matt and Steve for suggestions they said it would be better to go via Girona because of the hills on the coast. However they had suggested untarred and unsignposted farm tracks to Girona and I thought that would cost me too much time.
I had almost made up my mind to go my original way, but when I got to the crossroads and saw how little traffic there was, made a snap decision and took the “yellow)” road to Girona. I was averaging over 25 and thinking I would be in Girona shortly after 11, but if so – how boring. I’ld have nothing to tell:

The “yellow” road suddenly ended and I had to turn left onto a busy “red”road. As the lorries thundered by, I thought “no way am I gong on that even if it is only 2,5 km.” I saw a track running parallel and took that. After 2 big puddles, which I cycled through without any problem, there was a bend taking the track away from the road and up a steep hill, so I turned round. Thinking I wouldn’t get enough speed up round the bend to pass back through the puddles, I tried to push the bike through and walk around them. Easier said than done! There I was trying to get the brambles off one leg with the other foot stuck in the quagmire!  I did eventually escape (obviously or I wouldn’t be writing this). It wasn’t at all funny at the time, but I laugh now at the picture it must have presented. OK then, up th hill it is! The track ended on a quiet road, which took me to a little village just off the main road. I couldn’t find the place called St. Julia, which, according to my map should hav taken me a quiet way into Girona and, trusting my instinct rather than my GPS. tried another track. I’d only gone a fer metres when signs for foot and cycle path to Girona appeared – clever girl! This eventually ended in guess what? A busy main road, but at least there didn’t seem to be many lorries and there was a wide hard shoulder, so I took it – not that I had much choice. I came to a tourist office and the nice young man in there not only told me a quieter way to get into the old town, but also how to get to the “green way” – a cycle route that would take me all the way to the coast. This was fine – mostly flat, but sandy. It must have rained fairly hard before I got there but I only caught a few drops. What I did get though was a shower from some sprinklers. I even had to put rain covers over my handlebar bag and rucksack to go through because there were so many spraying so hard all over the cycle path. Unfortuately I had to leave this route for Tossa and Lloret in order to miss a few of the hills. Matt had suggested me joining the coast even further south, but a cars-only dual carriage way prevented me from doing that.
The pass into Tossa wasn’t as bad as I had expected. The road had obviously been cut through the hill, but going down there was a horrible noise and there was some nylon thread caught up in my back disc brake.
I had to take all the luggage off and upend the bike to get it out, but noone stopped for the damsel in distress. I made it down to Tossa but didn’t go right down to the sea as I thought I would see it on my climb out towards Lloret. Unfortunately that road went round the back of the hill, but there had been some spectacular views which I wouldn’t have missed for the world. I finally got to Lloret and what a disappointment: a busy town with lots of traffic!
Afer my usual beer (which I had to buy in the camp supermarket because the bar was closed), a swim in the pool, and setting up the tent, I set off for a meal.
Walking through the bustling pedestrian shopping area I didn’t see many restaurants, so headed for the sea front. At an Engllish pub I had paella and Sangria and decided to go a different way back to the campsite. What a mistake! There was so much night life; noise and flashing lights, that I ended up taking a taxi.

Tour stats: 85.45 km., 607 m. climb, 6:55 bike time.

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