Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Day 165: Udaipur to Chittorgarh

If only all cycling days were as easy as today.

Well, actually it wouldn't be half as much fun, but an easy day on smooth roads with a stonking tailwind is still a day to be treasured. Even the routefinding out of Udaipur was easy; I pointed my bike at the rising sun, crossed the nearest bridge, followed what seemed to be the main flow of traffic through the maze of alleys in Udaipur, and found myself onto the road to Chittorgarh without taking a single wrong turn, despite not having a map at a usable scale and despite there being no signs in English until I was ten miles out of town.

the Leopard Highway, Rajasthan

The Leopard Highway

The road rolled gently up and down, but never so seriously up that I got much of a sweat on, which was a good thing in the sweltering heat, and I cooled a bit on the descents. A tourist bus passed and I pitied the poor travellers stuck on that thing in those temperatures.

Also, it was a day without punctures or tyre catastrophes - for once. I started a maintenance log about two weeks ago, to keep track of punctures and general fettling. Irony of ironies, I'd had little to report until then. Since I started the log, I've had to scrap two tyres and I've had eleven punctures in a single day. Eleven! At least I could buy a new tyre here in India; I tried to choose parts which are universally available (or simple enough that I could bodge a repair) and it's passed the first test.

ruined tyre in Rajasthan

75 miles at 14 mph today. And u've started seeing signs for Allahabad, which would put me on the trail of Phileas Fogg. Maybe I won't bother riding south to the line of the Tropic of Cancer. If I'm lucky that wind will hold all the way to Varanasi.

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