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Monday, June 18, 2012

Andernach to Bingen

The day started out fine. It was partly cloudy and cool but not too cool. We were on the road by 9:30 and things were going fine. Koblenz was the first major town because that is where the Mosel joins the Rhine, we had to go inland a ways to cross it and ended up taking the scenic route thru Koblenz.

We were soon back at the Rhine and about to head south when somebody said "There is a race today, it is better to take the lower path." We notice people running with numbers pinned to their shirts and decided to take his advice. Bad move. The "lower path" was just a muddy, bumpy track next to the river. So we decide to brave the runners and took the main Rhine bike path.

We managed to avoid any collisions and were soon at the beer garten for the Koblenzer brewery. (They used to be called Königsbacher but changed the name, I assume, to promote local loyalty). 

Koblenzer Pils
In a perverse sense of planning, the race course when past the beer garden on both sides (one outbound, one return). I don't know if the sight of people sitting down drinking beer and cheering you on would inspire a runner or not?

Friday at the Koblenzer Biergarten
The beer garden is across some railroad tracks from the brewery proper.

Koblenzer Brewery

We headed down the Rhine but Tim soon ran into tire (or tyre since he is British) and tube issues. We finally ended up replacing his rear tube and the whole process delayed us about 1.5-2 hours.

One of the times we were waiting, I took some touristy pictures of the Rhine...

The Rhine

The Rhine

At Boppard, my stomach was demanding lunch, so I insisted we stop. The place had a great view of the Rhine but turned out to have (not great but edible) Chinese food.

More Rhine, where we had lunch in Boppard
Service was a bit slow and that plus the mechanical delays meant we were not likely to make Bingen in a timely manner. So we decide to hop a train at Boppard and got off in Bacharach, where there is a tiny brewery, Bacchusbräu.


They had four beers on draft: the usual German brewpub three (Pale, Dark, Wheat) plus a Doppelbock. We ordered the smallest glass of all four.

Beers at Bacchusbräu
The Doppelbock was the tastiest of the quartet but not suitable for quaffing on a hot day with cycling left to do. The pale one was called "Pils" but it was really more of an unfiltered Munich Helles -- and need to lager more as it was a bit sweet. The Dunkle was about the same and the Wheat was actually not too bad. I had another wheat, the others a wheat and Dunkle.

Dunkel, Weizen, Doppelbock, "Pils"
We headed back to the Rhine, picked up the bike path and road the remaining 17km into Bingen. We had a bit of trouble finding the hotel but finally did. Not much eating choice around so it was Pizza for dinner (it was a Pakistani run pizzeria so they had some interesting Pakistani meals but I was not in any mood to experiment). The beer was Bittburger, so I had a Fanta Orange. I have drunk more Bittburger the past few days than I have in the past 10 years. I will be so happy to get to Franconia.

Distance ridden: 63km
Total Distance: 542km

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