The last three days I cycled about 65 miles a day from Wroclaw to Prague. I never actually left for the Czech Republic on Tuesday because there was thunderstorms aaalll day so it would have been pointless to try and leave. But on Wednesday the weather cleared a bit and I set off South towards the hills. It was good and sunny all day. The hills gradually got steeper and longer as I approached the mountain region at the border. Eventually found myself in some mountain village with no name – not even Google Earth gives it a name – and decided to camp because there was a storm coming.
I found a nice football field which was perfect. I couldn’t get my tent up before the storm though so I just had to ride it out and I got soggy feet. I don’t know if it was because I was practically in the clouds or because it was really hilly but when there was thunder you could feel it from the inside it was that loud. Almost as if the ground was shaking. Never seen so much rain in one go, not even in Scotland. So the field was completely flooded and I couldn’t camp there but luckily I met some guy that spoke English after the storm passed. He was draped in gold chains and a blue tracksuit. In fact everyone in this place had tracksuits. It was like a ned sanctuary. Anyway he showed me a cheap hotel which was good but the breakfast was cardboard. I basically used my room as a massive drying rack for all my clothes and tent.
The following day was mega sunny again. I crossed the border via singletrack early morning. The first thing I noticed was the quality of the roads changed instantly. Super smooth. Also the drivers go a lot slower here and don’t try to hit you. I cycled to Jicin, a town in the North and found a really nice spot to camp under a bridge. I sat out in the sun and made myself a feast of basically all the food I had left thrown together. And no it wasn’t rank it was yummy.
I could see another storm approaching in the distance, at least it wasn’t a storm yet but it looked pretty bad. So I pitched my tent but I couldn’t get the pegs all the way down because of the hard ground. Then out of nowhere this cloud swept across the sky from the left and went underneath the cloud that was coming towards me. I was really confused because it looked like a hurricane or something. It went from being sunny to total darkness in 20 mins. The wind went from mild breeze to you cant stand up but the craziest thing was the lightning – flashing at least three times a second! And it went on for about two hours! I had never seen anything like it and I’ll never forget it. I was pooing my pants. I thought I’d be really cool and take a video to show everybody but I suck at making videos and basically all you can see is some clouds and the odd flash of lightning and lots of rain blobs on my camera. So I won’t bother showing you.
Needless to say my tent blew away and landed in a muddy puddle, with added clay. So about midnight when I could actually get to it it was too late and the inside had a huge puddle in it. I slept out under the bridge to the soothing sound of thunder.
I woke up with the sun beaming down on my face and some guy walking his dog nearby staring at me. Probably wondering where the hell did that homeless dude steal his bike from. I dried my tent in the sun and set off when it was dry. The hills gradually flattened out by this point and I found some good straight roads. It was probably the warmest day so far. Fine when your cycling because of the breeze but when you stop your arms turn shiny with sweat. It’s pretty rank. I was only about 10 miles from Prague and powering it down this hill when suddenly I find myself rolling about the road. Apparently one of the cords from my bag on the front wheel flicked up a little and caught onto a small tree and stopped the bike instantly. I went flying over the handlebars. I showed that tree who’s boss though because it snapped in half from the force. Only minor cuts and bruises (and looking like an idiot) luckily but I make sure from now on to tuck everything in.
So what I thought would be a simple A to B turned out to be quite an eventful few days. I’m looking forward to looking around the city after the effort of getting here…