The one downside to our trip was the weather during our week on the radwegs (bike paths) — it was fairly chilly most days and there were intervals of rain. We had one exceptionally fine day, a couple that started out cold and cloudy but developed into fairly nice days later, and one nasty afternoon of heavy rain that soaked me pretty well. Tuli, who bikes in Eugene, Oregon, had better gear so he didn't get as wet as yours truly. A new lightweight rain jacket is on my list of things to buy this summer.
|On the Saar Radweg, day 1- Saarbrucken to Mettlach|
|Typical section of the Saar Radweg|
|Tuli, dressed for chilly weather in North Face's finest|
|Tour boat — Saar River|
|Hotel Zum Schwan - Mettlach|
The next day dawned chilly and gray. We left the hotel rather late that morning but because this was a short segment, only about 26 miles, we thought we'd best wait for the overcast to dissipate. It didn't so we hesitantly set out for Trier at about 10:30 am.
|Start of Day 2 - Tuli and I with Mettlach in the distance|
|This short portion of the Saar Radweg had a nice gravel surface|
|Tuli riding the Saar Radweg|
The next day brought rain. We could see it coming but on a tour like this, one doesn't have the option to wait for better weather. Your next hotel has already been booked and paid for as have all the others after that one. You simply must get to that hotel, rain or shine.
|Rain ahead on the trail to Piesport - Moselle River|
In Piesport it rained steadily all night and into the morning so once again made a late start. We waited until we were sure the rain was finished before leaving the hotel at around eleven o'clock. The forecast was encouraging and sure enough, by the time we drove the 26 miles to Traben, got settled into our lovely hotel, the Weingut Trossen, the sun came out for a few photo opps before we sat down to dinner.
We were in the heart of the Moselle wine region now and the river valleys, literally every square foot of them, are covered with vineyards, vineyards that have been there since Roman times. Yesterday's hotel in Piesport, the Weingut Lehnert-Viet, and the Weingut Trossen, are both working wineries that have had accommodations added on. (weingut means winery in German). Wine was plentiful, cheap, and I'm sure, quite tasty. Alas, I did not imbibe because my appetite for alcohol, as for so many other things, knows no bounds. I quit drinking alcohol years ago so it's simply better for me to try to ignore the aggravating fact that although I'm traveling in Germany, the home of one of my favorite wines, the beloved Gewürztraminer, I'm unable to sample any of it.
|Views from our hotel, the Weingut Trossen|
|No wine for me at the Weingut Trossen but happy nonetheless|
|Morning vineyard with grape harvesting machinery|
|Every possible square foot is used to grow grapes|
|Tuli rides the Moselle Radweg|
|These nice benches begged for a tryout|
|Reichsburg Castle - Cochem, Germany|
The next morning was cloudy with rain threatening. The path ran close by a highway for much of the way to Koblenz making this segment seem somewhat disappointing compared to the wonderful ride we'd enjoyed the day before. And then the weather deteriorated. We searched for shelter as the first few drops of rain spattered the pavement and blundered into an older hotel, the Lellman, where we had coffee and apple strudel as we watched the rain pound down outside. Luckily, it soon quit and we were able to proceed under partly sunny skies to our last stop, Koblenz.
We had biked a total of 195 miles (314 km) in six days of easy riding, rainy days excepted. Our Moselle bike trip was over.
|On the trail to Koblenz|