Carpatia Divide 2019, day #2 – How can one zapiekanka change the whole race
Even though I slept 1200 metres above the sea level, I wasn’t cold. It was better than in a valley next to a river. I had four walls, with little holes, and it gave me enough isolation from the outside. I had a bird family that was protecting me from the danger outside. Or at least, I believed they were.
Getting up, I ate one müsli bar and a few pieces of dried pineapple. I had to persuade myself to eat. I still wasn’t feeling well. But the broken hut wasn’t a good place to rest, so I continued on the rocky terrain of Carpatia Divide.
The road wasn’t going to get better. The overgrown singletracks changed to wide rocky roads and wet meadows. I was stepping in puddles and muddy pits and I was thankful for my waterproof socks that protected me. It was cold, but I wasn’t.
I had to get off and on the bike as I was struggling in unbearable slopes. Clipless pedals were getting stuck. It wasn’t easy to climb off the mountains. Mud, roots and rocks and harder and harder sections. I believe it’s just the way that Beskydy mountains are.
Through the Polish trails
Korbielów village – finally the civilization. At least some kind. I refilled on water and ate half a bag of chips. I couldn’t eat anything better and this was at least crunchy. I couldn’t find anything tasty so I made myself eat just heavy dense calories.
After a short road section, I went back into the hills. And they were so steep!!! That isn’t the way how you build the roads! You build a few hairpin bends to make it bearable. Not straight to the top. I would take a smaller chainring next time. Or did my leg just go through sudden death?
Every biker has a different sleeping strategy. I was trying to get up as early as I could. So I was surprised when I met one rider on a bus stop, it was 7 in the morning and he was only starting to get up! I just greeted him and pedalled and pedalled.
After the northern point of Slovakia, there was the first bike trail on the race track – Tabakowy. That was a ride. At places, that are forbidden to enter on foot, I met many mushroom pickers. Probably the season.
There was a lot of trails around Babí hora. The problem was that if I wanted to go down I first had to go up. Even that the trail Mosorny had a comfort slope fot climbing, I just couldn’t pedal. I forced myself to eat another bar to get some strength but I needed some real food. I hoped the track will go by a trail centre, but nothing was there.
We don’t want any vagrants here!
The trail Wilcza łapa was the last one. I needed to climb again, this time on a wide asphalt road with heavy traffic. It was not pleasant at all, but I swallowed some extra altitude metres at least. When I got to the top I found out that there was no food again. Just some souvenir shop for not-hungry tourists.
One couple asked me if I’m on the Carpatia Divide. It was nice to meet these people. I had no idea how they knew the race. The first two days a lot of people were asking, but after that, it was only wilderness.
Going down was easy. It was asphalt, so it wasn’t a problem to hit 60 kilometres per hour. If I could only keep that speed to finish, that would be a ride.
But after a short time, the insane mud was back. I couldn’t even go through the road, because it was covered by muddy pits. I was just pushing the bike through the forest looking for holes in bushes. One of my wheels almost disappeared in that mud. All my gear was screaming and grinding. What I have done??!!
It was getting better when I arrived in Podwilk. I finally found a good shop and bought something that looked like some kind of pizza. It wasn’t a real pizza, but it was good anyway. When I sat in front of the shop to eat, some lady from drugstore stormed out and told me: “For god’s sake, sit at the table.”
I was getting over my food problem. I liked the food, I only had some pain in my throat.
There’s flashing over the Tatras
With a portion of food in my belly, I continued to Suchá Hora in Slovakia. Roads were fast and I was able to eat a hotdog in a small buffet. But the border path was going through wet meadows with muddy pits which were left by forest machinery.
I heard thunder. That was bad. It was far far away, but thunderstorms can be really fast and be here any minute. There was no shelter, so I was just hoping it will not catch me. It must just be a shower over the Tatras.
Under the Magura, when I was entering the forest, it started raining. On one side, I liked that my bike will be washed, on the other side, I will make the bike dirty in a few minutes again.
There was a stream in the middle of the road and my wheels were slipping on mud. The only advantage of all this walking was no saddle soreness.
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Dzisiaj oczekiwany przepis (a raczej jeden z dwóch 🤭️) czyli zapiekanki które skradły moje serce ️ Tylko czekam aż będę mogła sobie je znowu zrobić, bo trochę to trwa ale OBIECUJE ŻE TOTALNIE WARTO! ———————————————————— NAJLEPSZE ZAPIEKANKA EVER SKŁADNIKI: (na porcje jak na zdjęciu) – Jedna półbagietka – Łyżka ketchupu – Łyżka koncentratu pomidorowego – Tofu wędzone (ja dałam 3/4 z kostki) – Pół cebuli – 2 średnie ugotowane ziemniaki – 5-7 sztuk umytych pieczarek – Sos sojowy – Trochę oleju – Łyżka płatków drożdżowych – Przyprawy: sól, pieprz, czosnek świeży/granulowany, papryka słodka, papryka wędzona, bazylia suszona, przyprawa do kurczaka/grilla/mięsa PRZEPIS: Kilka godzin wcześniej: ️Tofu wyciągnij z opakowania i pokrój w cienkie plastry. ️Do pudełka na żywność wlej łyżkę sosu sojowego, łyżkę oleju i dwie łyżki wody. Dodaj przyprawę do mięsa, czosnek, paprykę wędzoną i słodką oraz sól i pieprz. Dodaj pokrojone tofu, wszystko wymieszaj, zamknij i odstaw do lodówki. Co później? Ciąg dalszy znajdziesz w komentarzu️ #zapiekanka #zapieksy #weganskiser #weganskazapiekanka #tofu #wedzonetofu #pieczarki #mushrooms #sossojowy #soysauce #szczypiorek #ketchup #bagietka #kolacja #weganizmdlabiednychipracowitych #promujemywege #serzziemniaka #wegetarianizm #roslinniejemy #weganizmwpolsce #veganfood
It was getting dark when I arrived in Zakopane. I stopped at the petrol station to get some food. It’s my favourite place. I feel safe when the bike is watched by cameras and long opening hours give me the option to resupply at any time. There I bought a classic polish zapiekanka. That was the moment that changed the whole race for me.
It was so tasty. I found love for food again. I restored my strength and got the first good food in 30 hours. I put two baguettes into my saddlebag to have for a late dinner and early breakfast.
I was looking for zapiekanka at every petrol station I visited but that was the first and the last time I tasted it. Maybe if I ate zapiekankas only, I could win the race!
Cyclists aren’t welcome
I continued on the main road. Traffic was heavy. This town was having a huge party. As I read, Zakopane is the capital of Poland in winter. I wanted to get through the town as soon as possible. There were distractions everywhere. I could spend a lot of time in shops and markets with nice smelling tasty goods.
In this chaos, some fan of a race (not sure) took a picture of me. I must say I look really happy. That must be the zapiekanka I ate.
The traffic wasn’t much better behind the town borders. It was even worse. There were a lot of cars passing me very closely and one bus pushed me out of the road. The day after that some other racer was hit by a van.
After the end of the race, I talked with local racers. They told me that around Zakopane, drivers are the worst. Not that Poland itself would be full of nice, polite drivers, but Zakopane is just a special chapter. I was happy when I got far away and all the cars disappeared.
As it was completely dark by then, I started thinking about where to put myself to sleep. I was on endless road section so I still had several hours of a fast ride. I was going through a thick fog. I felt like I was going through light rain. That is definitely not a good sleeping condition.
I ended up near Lapszanka village at 1000m above the sea level. I didn’t find good shelter, but it wasn’t going to rain. I put my sleeping bag on a wide table. It had only one disadvantage. It was so cold! And I had no sleeping pad. I just tried to use my rescue foil, but to be honest, I didn’t feel any difference.
Despite the cold, I slept like a happy Egyptian mummy.
- Carpatia Divide 2019, day #1 – When I was terribly wrong
- Carpatia Divide 2019, day #2 – How can one zapiekanka change the whole race
- Carpatia Divide 2019, day #3 – When I was crossing endless meadows
- Carpatia Divide 2019, day #4 – How I sang the bear song
SoundBuds Slim – wireless headphones by Anker
We live at the time of charging. Our tools last only for a short period of time, they run out of battery and they have the same use as a rock in a river. That’s the price of wireless and comfort and I’m ready to pay it. I hesitated for a long time to choose my new Bluetooth headphone. After searching the internet I choose unknown company Anker.
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Doarama – 3D visualization of your activities
Doarama is a great web app where you can upload your GPX file of your activity and you will get a beautifil visualization of your achievement. It is most impressive in hilly terrain when you can see how you climb to the top of mountains. It can also visualise air activities as paragliding.
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