21st of July: Corbeni, Rumania – Turnu Ruieni, Rumania – 456 km.
At breakfast I shared a table with two guys
from New Zealand. They had done The Transfagarasan the day before (Sunday). They were full of praise but complained that the road had been very crowded.
As I pulled out from the boardinghouse I was on the fabled road and
it soon started to climb. By chance I hit the road on a Monday morning which meant that I had the road almost to myself– great! The Transfagarasan turned out to be everything I had hoped for.
When I got north of the
mountains I headed west to ride another famous road – The Transalpina.
As I got near the town Sebes I noticed that all the signs for Transalpina were crossed out. I just ignored that and let the GPS guide me. When I
entered the road I found it almost deserted. The road offered some interesting riding. The surface constantly changed between smooth new tarmac, old tarmac with lots of potholes, broken up concrete slabs and rough gravel. The V-Strom soaked it all up.
In Curtea de Arges I turned right and followed a small river out of the mountains. It turned out to be a scorching hot afternoon.
Late in the afternoon I arrived in the small village Turnu Ruieni
at the home of the Ciric family. I have stayed at their house every year for the last 5 years when I was participating in the EnduRomania. It was good to be back. When I told them of the days ride they were very surprised that I had been able to ride the Transalpina.
It had been closed for a while due to rockslides and was officially still close. That explained the deserted road and the often very poor riding conditions.
It turned out that I had arrived in Turnu Ruieni on the day of the
yearly village fête. In the evening the youngest son of the family showed me around and introduced me to his friends. I shook hands with a lot of people that night. It got late before I hit the sack.