There were times this afternoon when I felt I was mostly riding the distance to get it done, not a good sign. I miss having Mickey here these last few days.
Today the weather was variable, though the common theme was a cold north wind. I awoke to frost outside the tent. This makes a range of 40C (70F) in just two days. As I waited for the sun to come out, I saw an entirely overcast sky clear up. Later in the day it would cloud over again. The road stayed in good condition, though progressively busier as I approached Ижевск. At 48km I reached the end of the cross road and headed north into the wind, up a hill and to the big city. There were surprisingly few trucks here (I was later to find they were routed around the city. At 50km, I stopped at a store for breakfast.
From here I cycled through the city with surprising ease. I followed the truck signs and major road signs and stopped at a café at 65km on the way out of the city.
The road to Воткинск became progressively busier and worse condition. It was rough with cracks. There were multiple drainages to cross over. The number of trucks increased as a bypass took them around town and onto this road. By 96km I was ready for a break. My map showed an intriguing short cut via Болгуры. I stopped at the shop in town to get dinner items and also rode past a ski area (I must be in the Urals now). However, I couldn’t find the short cut. I asked once and was directed on a path that seemed doubtful and ended up at the local swimming hole. Tired and frustrated, I made my way back to the busy road and rode a short distance until I found some trees to get out of the wind.
108km today, 4615km across Eurasia. [Photo: 692, 695]