Japan

Smiles all round - not aware of the challenges ahead

It was cold ( 8 C), and rainy when we left Fukoka but we were happy as the wind was at our back. A chill wind blew all day and the temperature maxed out at 13C. it is slow going getting through big cities in Japan, the stop lights take forever and with small hiccups along the way we did not arrive into Hita, our first stop until 5ish. We were cold, wet, tired and hungry. The wonderful cherry blossoms lining the canal made it worth the effort.

Hita to Yufuin - 50+kms, with a total ascent of over 1200 mtrs. and some long steep hills. I did quite a bit of walking.

A rare find - a picnic table on the 3rd day to Karakoa Onsen. another tough day with rain, wind, and steep hills. over 1300m ascent again.

Enjoying a gentle downhill run

Day four of riding after a day off in Karakoa Onsen. We set off in good weather for our ride through the valdera of an ancient volcano After a short climb there was a long down hill run and e were feeling rather pleased. It was a good start to a 94k day but as we entered the base of the caldera a storm hit. It rained and blew so hard we could hardly stay upright. After sheltering for a while in a Bunnings style doorway we set off again and were hit by strong squalls for the 2nd time. Eventually, we turned south and the winds were at our back but we still had 50+kms to go and it was a steady climb to Takachiho George.

Our first Japanese style room in Takachiho

Takachiho George

A beautiful day for our downhill run to the coast

Next day ee left Hyuga for the 70 km ride to Miyazako in soft misty rain that only got heavier as the day went on

Drowned rats. We love 7 Eleven, they have everything a touring cyclist needs. Coffee, food, ATM, and last but not least a toilet.

A week or so has passed since I last looked at Stellar. The journey has taken us to the south of Kyushu and we are now in Hondo, Amasuka Island where we have been riding for the past two days. Every day we enjoy our ride but today was extra special because instead of slowly grinding up hills we had 7 tunnels, all well lit with nice wide bike paths. This changed what looked like being another tough day into a breeze. .We were in at 2pm, a first. Another first was a large hawk swept past Keith and over my shoulder to steal my custard eclair. The following pictures are of the journey to date.

The view from our room. K in his yukata, you can wear these to the onsen, around the hotel, even to dinner.

A fellow rider.

It has been lots of coast rides and lots of mountains. Every where is spectacular.

A well earned rest. I felt like an old person sitting in the hotel lobby reading and watching the comings and goings.

Dressed for dinner.

A rare find - a picnic table

We have been on the road for 16 days and it seems there is endless variety. We have stayed in many different places; hotels, ryokans, resorts, business hotels, guest houses and small inns. We have had amazing meals from set dinners with 16 plus small dishes, great pub meals. and what is fast becoming a staple our picnic lunch with bread, cheese, scrumptious tomatoes, avocado and salad. We stop regularly at 7 Elevens, they have saved our bacon more than once and we are all enjoying this adventure more than we ever expected. Japan is a truly amazing place to cycle, stunningly beautiful and varied.

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  • 1pepeslove

    and great Onigiri! OH...and the dark chocolate covered Almonds!! Oh! And the great cotton undies and t shirts!

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