Day 4-1. Kärradal to Göteborg
Distance 98km Average 16.0km/hr Max 41.5km/hr Time 6.30 hrs.
Hot hot hot hot hot. I thought for a moment to leave this as the travelogue for today. However we did actually do a lot of cycling this day, so the blistering summer heat was not the only story.
The day started early despite the late end to the previous day. For some reason we awoke at seven to the customary dewy morning and took the opportunity to have an early breakfast. By eight the sun was fully up and the day had already warmed up to hot. Damae took advantage of the early start to wash some clothing and I then ambled off to do the washing up.
We packed in as the temperature rose, and not being interested in exploring the campsite further we got going. We paused by the shower block as per usual just before setting off, Damae returned the key for the building and we headed back onto the quiet rural road we had arrived on the night before. It was just gone nine thirty and we were on our way again.
We were a little slow for the first few kilometres as we made our way through the undulating countryside in the sun. Within a half hour our pace increased as the route took us along what appeared to be an old railway line. The pictures give you the idea of the flatness off the area, and here we encountered one of the few cyclists we were to pass on the whole trip. We exchanged cheery greetings without stopping and carried on our separate ways. A flat bit without headwind is nice way to spent the first part of the morning, and it was to remain easy going until the first morning wobble stop beside a beautiful white church and immaculate graveyard at Väro.
Shortly after our stop we returned to the coast to enjoy the sea views and blue sky again. This was fun and although it was getting warm the sea breeze kept us comfortable. The route then took us on a little off road section. We returned to following a railway line, but our cycle path crossed the railway a few times so we had some up and downs, not real climbing but they added to the fun of the gravel track. I headed off into the distance revelling in the route and we were to play leap frog with each other as we stopped in turn to photograph things that caught our eyes. For now it was fun and we had not started thinking about where we were going to be that evening.
We stopped to shelter from the heat in Åsa. To go with the early start we enjoyed a long lunch, under the shade of a shop canopy. Despite the shade it was really just too hot to be comfortable. Damae hit the supermarket as was her want and bought a lot of juice and drinks. The sky was about as blue as it could be, the moon was just visible and apart from the heat life was good. On the way out of town I managed to fall off my bike turning too sharply after a navigation error.
After a few kilometres on a reasonably quiet main road, passing more impressive churches, we returned to a quieter road, that ran roughly parallel to the main road, and encountered a Cykelspåret sign in good nick! At one point the road climbed up to a bridge over the E6. The route moved further inland whilst not losing all sight of the sea, but within an hour or so we decided we were going to have to stop again. The heat now at the middle of the day was too much. Fortunately out of the lovely rolling countryside the Fjärås Bracka visitors centre appeared at just the right moment. This is probably worth a second visit to explore the local oddity, a lake created by the glacial till at the end of a valley. In days gone by there was a thriving community served by a boat service. More modern transportation made it redundant but there are plans to restore a ship and put it into service. Perhaps the most appealling part of the small visitors centre was that it served coffee, cake and ice-cream.
I was in a mood to push on today despite Damae saying she was tired. For some reason I seem to cope better with extreme heat. Maybe my childhood summer holidays on the Adriatic Island of Losinj, and my mixed blood have something to do with it. Still I seemed to be struggling a little less than Damae.