180512-Ouch

I had a long discussion last night with Cracker, the hostel host, and learned about hostel operations. Then up even later. I’ve been sleeping in the same room as the staff, and they displaced two to make room for more guests (who then never showed up, making a great night of sleep for me, less so for them).

I left Zagreb this morning at 8:30 with a long way to go. I followed the Sava all day, on small roads with little to no traffic. I pay a high toll for following the Sava. Arriving in Sisak, 50 km from Zagreb, I’d cycled 75 km through more small towns than I care to remember with names I have no hopes of pronouncing.

On this cycling route in Croatia, I came across a cycling support station, complete with tool and a solar-powered pump.
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I had second lunch at the castle in Sisak, although the castle doesn’t open until June.
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I passed an abandoned manor house 5 km from there.

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From there I had 20 km until the first campground. I had six campgrounds between me and the Bosnian border. I wanted to get as close to the border as I could, so I planned to work my way closer one campground at a time. I made it to the farthest one; glad it was open as backtracking to the last would have added another 15 km to my 136 km day.

That’s farther than any day in a long time; on my 16-week trip from Istanbul to Ireland my recollection is the longest day was 134 km. Of course, most of the time on that trip I was headed upstream. Today was all down.

Tired, I was counting down kilometer to kilometer from 30 km, and the last 10 were exhausting. 15 actually; 5 more km than calculated.

I ache all over. I couldn’t stop for a break because the last 30 km were marshland. Whenever I stopped mosquitoes swarmed.

Unsurprisingly, the same situation at the campground near Puska. I was just wondering yesterday why I carried insect repellent as I never used it. Asked and answered.

The hostess pf Ekoethno Selo Strug showed me where to put my “little house.” They’re still constructing the campsite, although the main building supports multiple solar panels. A cold shower and dinner at the associated restaurant, and I’m ready for bed!

I have a reservation tomorrow at a hostel just across the border in Bosanka Gradiška. Hopefully a shorter day-other cyclists have suggested I can cross there with no issue.

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