75km Mellado – Almunecar

We felt a bit rusty as we returned to our bikes after nearly a week off, but the hardest part of the day was over as soon as we’d pushed our way to the top of Bill & Sue’s driveway. Their home, where we’d spent the past few days doing some brush clearing and weeding, is located at the end of a steep dirt track, nearly 2km long. It was fun coming down last Sunday but a real slog getting back up! Once at the top, we cruised along the Haza del Lino road, which made us feel like we were on top of the world. We could see not only the tops of the clouds, but also the sun shining on the Mediterranean some 1,200 meters below us and dozens of mountainous slopes, cultivated with vines, almond and olive trees. It took us a good hour to get down to sea level, where we once again ended up on the N340 road, heading for Malaga. The day was full of regular climbs, but also plenty of downhill stretches, and always a gorgeous view to our left over the cliffs and water. After treating ourselves to a tub of ice cream in the afternoon (no worry about it going to our hips!), we found a 3rd class campground alongside the main road just outside of Almunecar. A welcome refuge after a long first day back in the saddle.