Friday 25 April 2014

A drink at Bonys bar

A drink at Bonys bar.

Rain today

Raon this morning. The view ovet the mountains.

A second ride from Biniali

Tuesday -A second ride from Biniali.

This time we followed the water road to Sant a Maria and continued onto Bunyola. There we turned off towards the Orient.The ride  has some stunning scenery and is highly recommended. The start is the climb off the Coll de Honor to the  Orient, 5.4 km at an average of 5.9 % rising to a height of 550 metres. The bar in the Orient was poor value last year so we continued to Alaro for lunch. After a small climb out of the Orient it was a fast descent to Alaro with some long sweeping bends. When we arrived in the village square the bakers was still open. We had been caught out in previous years when he closed  before we had bought anything. Chocolate cake was purchased and stored for later. 5 minutes later the baker closed the door and shut for lunch.  We selected a cafe just off the main square for lunch. It turned out to be vegetarian. Desipte having a board outside that offered a range of snacks the only food that was available was the 10 euro 3  course lunch.  This was more than we wanted but he was happy for us to share. The food was excellent. A filling bread and garlic soup to start, a soya boulanse for the main course and s pear tart for desert. The tart was more like a claflouti in texture. It was not  too sweet and had a good taste. We will look up a recipe when we get back.
We returned to Biniali via Inca. Once we had negotiated the town we took the minor roads to Sencelles and continued onto Santa Eugenia before returning to Biniali. We felt 3 drops of rain as we cycled the last few miles. A round trip of 48 miles.

9 euro starter.  Simple but tasty.

A ride grom Rahia Grande

Wednesday ride from Bahia Grande

Friday  25th- Note. Heavy rain this morning so am trying to catch up with my posts so the reports will not appear in date order.

For Wednesday we drove to thd far side of the island and parked on the development of Rahia Grande. We had planned to take the minor roads to S Estanyol for lunch. However a wrong turn saw us happily peddling towards Luc Major and added an extra 10  miles to the route.  We had eatten in a restaurante Es Mollet there last year and fortunately when we arrrived around 2:30 they were still doing the menu of the day. 9 euros each for 3 courses including a bottle of wine .  After a pleasant lunch ,(we did not finish the wine), we continued cycling around the coast towards Campos before turning back towards Luc Major on the Cami de Son Marrano. We then took the minor roads back to Bahia Grande. No sign of any tortoises  or Pine Martins this year. A round trip of 47 miles.

Pro Cycle Mallorca

Pro Cycle Mallorca

One of the things we have missed this holiday by talking our own bikes is collecting our hire bikes from Bruce at Pro Cycle Mallorca. We went past the old shop and found it shut up. Had a successful business hit in hard times in the recession? A quick search on the Internet and we located his new larger shop complete with cafe next to the Pollensa Parc Hotel. It looks like the business is thriving.  If you need to hire bikes in Mallorca we can highly recommend them for the friendly service, skilled mechanics and good range of bikes.

Thursday 24 April 2014

Thursdays Ride

A ride from Santa Maria.

The forecast was good again.  We had considered a ride from the apartment upto Lluc but for a a few hundred metres more of ascent we did a route to Soller instead. I had planned to start near Bunyola but Lyn thought it would be a good idea to warm her legs up before the climb up the Coll de Soller so we started about 5 miles away in Santa Maria.The road to Bunyola is not too busy and the gentle ascent to Bunyola gets the legs nicely warmed up. We did not stop for a coffee in the square but instead continued up the Coll de Soller, 5.1 km at around 5.2%. Most to the traffic goes though the tunnel so the road only had the occasionally car. A steady stream of cyclists wound their way to the top and the switchbacks offered good views over to Palma. The top to the Coll was the point of no return.  Descend to Soller and climb back or descend back to the car. We opted for the former. The descent was long but had to many bends to get a good speed up. Lyn preferred to descent at a slower pace and admire the view. The last 2 miles were busy as the road joined up with the traffic who had gone  though the tunnel.
We turned off the Soller road towards Dela. The road climbed out of Soller and offered good views back to the town. After approximately 200 m climbing there was a short descent followed by another 100m of climbing to reach the village.  We stopped for a late lunch in a bar before starting the climb upto Valldemossa another 280 meters of assent with a Short section at 10%. Lyn was being to wonder if the ride was such a good idea but the effort was rewarded with some splendid views over the sea and countryside.  We eventually reached the pretty monastery village stopped for coffee and cake. Tops we put on for the descent back to towards Palma.  We spotted a minor road for the first part of the descent which eventually joined the main road . We turned off towards Santa Maria and had around 8 miles of gentle peddling to get back to the van.    A trip of around 42 miles with 1065 metres of ascent. A excellent ride on  sunny day.

Thursdays ride

A new Ruck Sac

Robert trys out the new Deuter 2000 litre ruck sac. Designed for the man who needs to carry everything including the kitchen sink. A full review to be published  once the free sample arrives.

Tuesday 22 April 2014

A second rest day

Sunday 20th

The forecast had a 35% chance of rain so we decided to drive to Soller to visit the botanical gardens.  The guide book and leaflet said it was open until 2:30. However it is now closed on Sundays and Mondays. A steady stream of disappointed tourists arrived at the  locked gate whilst we decided what to do. We took to opportunity to explore the town centre and found a free Miro exhibition underneath the railway station . We then drove to Port de Soller for a walk along the seafront and an ice cream.  We returned to Port de Pollensa via the mountain route.  The weather had improved by the time we returned so we decided to cycle on the back roads to Pollensa for the Cuttlefish festival Lyn had read about on the Internet before we left. We  tried the port but there was not a cuttlefish in site. The best we could do was to have a tapas in a restaurant on the front with cuttlefish as one of the dishes. The deep fried rubbery fish in a dry hard batter was perhaps not the best example of the cuisine. The rest of the meal was passable but the "computer system" had failed so only half the dishes we ordered arrived by the time they came to clear the plates . The mistake was sorted and we cycled back to Port de Pollensa around the bay. After a shower we cycled into town for a drink at Bony's bar. He stored our bike overnight in the bar when I had an excursion to the hospital in 2011 and gave us a warn greeting when we arrived. A large Sangria ensured we slept well.

Sunday 20 April 2014

A day in Soller

A test day

A rest day. Saturday 19th

We had planned a rest day and a visit to Alcudia. However the weather was excellent and when we checked the forecast for the next few days there was a  high chance of rain. We drove to Biniali and parked by the roundabout. A parking spot we had used in previous years. The temperature was 26 degrees when we set off. I had not decided on the route but it developed during the day. We headed first to Costitx talking the mountain bike track. The bakers in the main square was open so we stopped for a pie, coffee and cake.  7 miles in and our first stop. After lunch we took the mountain bike track to Ruberts and then the road to Algaida via Pina. The next stop was Llucmajor.  We took the scenic road from Algaida and stopped in the main square for a well deserved ice cream. 21 miles and our second stop. A gentle climb out of Llucmajor took us to Randa where we turned off towards Montuiri. We left the climb upto the monastery for another day. The road to Montuiri offered some excellent views across the island. On reaching the village we did climb up the hill to a bar for a coffee.Our third stop.  It started to cloud over as we sat outside but the rain stayed away. It was then back via Ruberts and the minor tracks to Biniali.  A round trip of 42 miles.  Not bad for a rest day.

A ride fro Arta

A ride from Arta.
Todays ride started in Arta a 45 minute drive away. I planned a new route. We parked the van on the edge of the town and took the minor road towards the  coast.  The temperature was hotter than forecast so the windproof top stayed in the van all day . On reaching Son Servera we turned towards Cala Miller.  The road was quite busy but we were soon at the seafront riding along the promenade and dodging the 4 seater peddle carts an more sedentary tourists. We tried to follow the coast to Portocristo but the path and dirt track ran out so we had to use the road for the last few miles . We then turned inland towards Son Carrio where we stopped in a small bar for refreshments. Pa amb oli and a beer.  The beer was refreshing but water would have been a more sensible choice.  We then continued towards Manacor and joined a section of yesterday's route. On reaching the town we eventually found the Ma 3321 towards the Bosch valley. It was not signposted. We turned off it after a few km's  and then joined another section of yesterday's route towards Sant Llorenc des Cardassar. This time we turned off on a minor road towards Arta but not before we climbed a step hill and had to retrace our steps as we had missed the turn.  It was around 8 miles to Arta.The section of the route had good scenic views but did include a couple of small climbs. We arrived back in Arta at about 7pm a good days ride of just over 42 miles.

Thursday 17 April 2014

20 miles for a pie

20 miles for a pie.

A little cooler today so the windproof top stayed on for 5 miles. We started today's rode in  Ariany. It was a short ride to Petra and we then followed the MA 3330 to the turn off for the Bosch valley. The route drops down into the pretty valley . We spotted the trees ( photos aready uploaded ) but not sure what they are. The are grown in a square grid about 2.5 metres apart and they were around 4 metres high. All the lower branches had been trimmed. You can continue on the road to Manacor. However we turned off onto took the Cami de Son Ramon. We had done the ride last year and had problems finding the correct turn as our 1:100000 map does not show all the minor roads.   On teaching the main road we crossed it and took the scenic but a little hilly road to Sant Llorenc des Cardassar. On reaching the town we soon located the bakery we had found last year. Between us we had 2 empandas ,1 onion pasty both with wholemeal pastry, 2 apricot sweet pastys and 4 coffees.  The only disappointed was we not asked to view their large oven we had been shown last year . After our late lunch we took the scenic route to Manacor and then the minor roads back to Ariany via Petra.  A round trip of 43 miles.

20 miles for a pie.

Wednesday 16 April 2014

40 mile ride from Ruberts

A ride from Ruberts.

Parked in our usual spot at the start of the mountain bike track. My windproof top was not required.  It was worn for the first mile and then spend the rest of the day in my back pocket. We headed to Lloret de Vista Alegro and then on to Montuiri. We cycled up the hill to the town so I could use the free WIFI but it was not available. The old man we had seen in previous years was still sat outside the bar enticing cyclists to stop.  Their terrace has wonderful views but it  too early to stop and only a short ride to Montuiri where we planned to have lunch in a cafe in its main square.
We went to a cafe we had visted on one of our previous trips.  The set menu was 7 euros for a beer,  main couse and coffee. We both opted for braised chicken and rice. After Porreres we headed to Vilafranca de Bonany and then Petra. We had to do a couple of miles along a bike path that ran alongside the motorway. (Separated by a fence). It was surprisingly quiet and we could have continued all the way to Manacor. The square in Petra was packed with cyclists.  In addition to the cafes there is now a shop selling expensive bike wear. After Petra we continued to Sineu and then took a minor track Cami de Montuiri that was not on the map. We evenully found ourselves back in Lloret de Vista Alegra. Rather than retracing our earlier tracks we continued on the main road and so we could take the mountain bike track back to Ruberts. An extra couple of miles that seemed longer than than it looked on the map !

Tuesday 15 April 2014

View from terrace bar

View from Coves de Campanet terrace bar

Day 2

The day started with a trip to the Supermarket to stock up with provisions and raid their cardboard skip to provide some extra packing for when we put the bikes in the back of the van without using the bike boxes.
It was a little cooler when we set off on our ride so Windproof tops or gillets were worn.These came off later in the day when the sun came though the cloud. We took the back roads to Campanet and then on to Moscari where we stopped at the bar in the square.  Arriving in time for lunch but no tapas were on display so we just had a coffee. We then followed the road to Binianar where we stopped at a small bar and had an excellent Pa  anb oli. Bread with dried ham, cheese olives and tomatoes. Excellent value at less than 10 euros for both of us with a small beer.
After lunch we took the track to Inca and after working our way though the town taking a couple of wrong turns and being chased by dogs we eventually found ourselves on the minor road to sa Pobla. We skirted the town and took the and took the road to the coves of Campanet.  We have cycled past them on numerous occasions but had never tried the terrace bar. It offered excellent views accross the valley  for which they charged a 90 cent per coffee premium over the bar in Moscari. We then continued back to Porta
Pollensa taling a wrong turn on the back roads and extending the ride by a couple of miles. A round trip of about 50 miles.

Monday 14 April 2014

A good day for cycling

A good day for cycling.

We set off from the apartment taking the back roads first to Campanet then Buger on to Llubi , Muro , though the Patc Natural S' Albufera and then taking the back roads back to Port de Pollensa a round trip of 45 miles. The weather was excellent for cycling shorts and a light weight cycling top and suncream was all that was required. We arrived in Muro in time for a late snack at our favourite cafe. We had the last two meat pies with peas a little dry but the coffee was excellent,  the complementary oranges sweet and juicy and custard and walnut tart was very tasty.

Decided to cook again ronight. Peter came round with a spare key but it had been cut upside down so did not fit the lock.

An early start.

The alarm was set for 3 am but we awoke before it went off. A quick shower a bowl of porridge and were off to the airport.  The meet and greet was efficient and just a short walk to the terminal. The bike boxes gently glided to the check in. There was no problem with the size but we just got a standard luggage allowance for them as we had not checked them as a bike. After the bags were weighed we had to take them to an special desk for large luggage.
The flight was just over 2 hours.  There had been some early morning fog at Palma but it had cleared before we took off. Our cases were one of the first off the conveyor and we then had so go to a different area to collect the bike boxes. We had to wait sbout 10 minutes but then much to our surprise 2 pristine bike boxes appeared. .
Whilst we were waiting we played spot the bike box? Bike box Alan's, an evoc soft case, large hard suit cases etc.

We collected our van put the case  inside and then we to the parking cafeteria for a coffee and Tortilla baguette.  Decathlon in Palma was closed so R could not get new sunglasses but Lidel in Inca was open until 3 so we were able to stock up with provisions before continuing to Porta Pollensa. 
After assembling the bikes we had time for a quick swim in the pool before cycling to Pollensa for an ice cream from the stall in the main square. That made us thirsty some we wandered to a cafe at the bottom Calvario steps  for a beer.
Margtetta  and Peter came round  in the evening.
We paid them for the apartment and had a pleasant surprise when they returned 10 minutes later as we had over paid them by £53. We had to try and remember the balance and Lyn had reversed the last 2 digits . The saving will be spent on a meal at Stay.

Aquick swim.

Reassembling the bikes

Sunday 13 April 2014

Bike boxes

All packed and now they are hopefully on the way to the plane. A full review to follow.