Well after yesterday’s 50 mile ride with just one hill, (okay it was 25km long and took us up to 493 meters), it was time to go searching for the elusive blue birds which supposedly occupy the marshes just down the road.
Now we know there are pink flamingoes, there are pictures of them everywhere, but that is to be expected when you frequent a world heritage site, the pink and blue salt lakes of Torrevieja. But blue flamingoes…we’d have to see.
Now I happened to mention in the last blog that we would be doing hills or lakes….well now we have done both, and I have to say that two rides cannot be different in nature if you tried. For the hills, we struck south west into the Sierra de la Pila mountains, and as Dolores is only 4 feet above sea level required a small level of physical exertion, nothing dramatic, just a long 2% climb with the occasional kick. Midway we stopped at Albanilla for a short milky Cortado and a wonderful homemade honey cake which gave us sufficient surges of energy to continue up to the plains.
There we were treated to a “moonscape”, in which the barren land was score-marked with deep crevices and ravines; it felt like bandit country from one of Sergio Leone’s spaghetti western films with one house villages called “El Tolle” and “El Rebals”. The plains are fertile with olive groves and the black stumps of promising vines. However, what goes up, does come down, and we enjoyed a wonderful descent, somewhat technical towards the top of the mountain, but full of well crafted bends that embrace you and then send you safely on your way.
A ‘cool down’ cycle across the valley floor and we were ready for a dip in the pool and a well earned ice-cold cerzeva.
Today’s ride was different, we opted to head south into the Murcia region across the valley to the small town of Hurchillo. From there we climbed, helped by a breeze on our our backs, up to the region’s main reservoir called “Embalse de la Pedrera”. Well what a view, we simply had to stop to take in the gorgeousness of the glistening lake, bright turquoise in colour and sitting high above the valley to afford us views across the mountains to the sea.
We were accompanied by a flight of swallows that darted just ahead of us at road level, inviting us to join their parade. From there we were treated to a broad road with silky tarmac as we descended to the lunch stop of pork brochette, coke and of course, a Cortado.
From there it was a gentle cycle back to the villa via the local bike shop “Cyclelogic” in Benijofar for a some light fettling of Sean’s front wheel bearings…a friendly bunch, no charge.
So back to the blue flamingoes, did we spot them….well actually not this time, but there will be plenty of opportunities in the future. Fancy joining us ? Leave a comment if you do 🙂