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Day 15....L’Ampollo to Altafulla ....88km.....(total 1,211 km)

After yesterday’s near death experiences on the N-340 I was determined at all costs to avoid it like the plague despite STRAVA wanting me to take it. So I looked in detail at my maps and figured I could at least avoid it for the first 25 km by taking small country lanes and ducking and weaving in and out of small holiday communities .

The upside being that I got to see some unexpected delights. The downside being that what looked flat on maps was actually a series of country lanes that dipped suddenly and then viciously climbed. I’d happily take that over being roadkill for an over tired truck driver.

They say that the disc brakes on a Surly Disc Trucker will stop you on a dime. Not if you and your bike weigh close to 300lbs and there’s roadside gravel when a domestic cat decides to jump out in front of you.

On one of the obscure lanes I was trundling along I came across a mosaic tiled dinosaur in the front garden of a house. As you do. Bizarre doesn’t begin to describe it. Then I noticed the car parked in the driveway and it solved everything. It was Dutch plated.

Another testament (if any was needed) to the victims of the great Spanish property boom to bust story. This one had spectacular views but wasn’t the only unfinished building I came across in the holiday communities that I cycled through.

Eventually though the small lanes by the coast came to a dead end and out onto the N-340 I was spat. This was the sort of impressive engineering architecture that I passed by.

I am guessing this is where you take unruly kids for holiday .

The experience on the N-340 was in stark contrast to yesterday’s and for some reason after it diverged from also being the A7 I was thrust into the beautiful seaside town of Cambrils with its flat cycle designated lane ways and row upon row of classy restaurants and cafes. Seemed like a great place to stop and enjoy another picnic lunch. So I did.

Cambrils main foreshore Road

Even a Surly has a limit to how far you can go with it.

I really couldn’t fault the road or the scenery between Cambrils and Tarragona .

Approaching Tarragona it became obvious that gas production was / is a big industry here. Passed multiple plants with oversized tanks. Is it just me but do these look like industrially sized onions?

In Tarragona I came across this beauty parked in the marina. At a mere 350 ft she could be the worlds longest yacht. Google “Black Pearl super yacht” for more information.

A sobering reminder as I approached Altafulla.

Is there a better way to finish the day than with a 15 min dip in the Mediterranean followed by a cleansing ale ? No, I didn’t think so.

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