I left Ljubljana under grey skies, and with regrets. I’d had a great night talking with Sam. The inner city has a quiet energy to it. Visiting Slovenia in May has worked out well; I’m just ahead of tourist season. The weather has been good. Sam still slept as I left.
I followed the Sava all day, with much of that time between the river and a railroad track, following a small road on one side of the river with the highway on the other side. The first 40 km of the day, with a few big exceptions, I rode downhill. Of the two castles I passed, Fuzinski Grad had been converted to a modern architecture museum (with an Audi photo shoot in progress), and the other a residence.
Just quiet cycling along cycle lane or small country road, passed by the occasional tractor or small car.
I selected a hostel 60 km from Ljubljana. Email back and forth this morning confirmed they had beds available. 60 km wasn’t far considering I followed a river downhill all day. Indeed, I considered pushing on but decided to instead take my time.
When researching this route the other day, I’d read a proposal by someone to create a marked cycle path between Ljubljana and Zagreb. They’d cycled the route twice, and commented the only issue was a roughly 20 km section where the gorge constricts permitting only one road. That observation was dead on. The last 12 km I bit off in 4 km chunks of narrow roads and heavy traffic.
A mining car filled with coal indicates the turnoff, a clear indicator that Trbovlje used to be a mining town. Checking in at the hostel I learned no mining remains, although there are a few museums, and many of the old buildings and homes. After checking in I wandered about town a bit before settling back in at the hostel, as the only occupant of my room for a quiet evening. I could leave my bicycle in the hall outside my room, making unpacking a breeze. The music playing in the hostel bar is light American jazz.
I’ve spent the last two days cycling mostly down. Indeed, I think I can follow the Sava, only slightly angling away from the coast, for another 400+ km. The question remains of what then? More than a week of cycling downhill bodes … poorly … for getting back to the Adriatic across the mountains. I’m tempted to take a train (or bus) over the mountain range, since I’d like to cycle along that part of the Adriatic. It occurred to me today I could go far south inland, and then just cycle back up the Adriatic coast to Venice, bypassing most of the cycling in Italy. I wonder.