North Ridge on Sivri Dağı

After having not been up Sivri Dağı in many years (five?), I went up two different routes last week. The first, shorter and less successful effort, was with Philipp. He had been up to the ridge a number of times but had never made it to the summit. I told him I knew a summit route that didn’t require a rope. Well, we’d only been on the trail about five minutes when Philipp said we were going the wrong way. I suggested we go on. Another five minutes — same thing, and five minutes later — the same thing again. Not being so sure that I was going the right way, I acquiesced. We walked back about 10 minutes and started up what Philipp thought was the correct route.

As we made our way up the wide ramp, I kept thinking we weren’t going the right way, but at the same time it seemed familiar to me. Indeed, all became clear later. We were on the Classic Route, but I had wanted to take Philipp up the Yusuf Yusuf Route. We got to the ridge where you get a nice view of Çalbalı:

WhatsApp%20Image%202022-11-12%20at%2017.19.22%20(3) by bryandkeith on flickr

Looking in the other direction, however, you see this:

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Another week in İstanbul

This is what? my 6th visit to İstanbul? Ferda and I started by staying a few nights in Kadıköy, the first time I’ve stayed on the Asian (Anadolu) side of the Bosporus. With the exception of the beautiful Rüstem Paşa Camii, we spent the week visiting sights that we hadn’t seen before. It’d be easy to go back to İstanbul and spend another week seeing all new (for us) attractions again. We’re already talking about it!

We started our first full day with a walk from Kadıköy to Üsküdar. The courtyard of the 18th century Ottoman Ahmediye Medresesi:

IMG_20220929_132051 by bryandkeith on flickr

looks a lot like the courtyard of the nearby, also 18th century, Yeni Valide Camii:

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The end again, in Munich

Wow, four months pedaling from Corfu to Munich. That’s my longest bicycle tour in a decade. By the time we arrived in Munich, Corfu and Greece certainly seemed like a long ways away. The last couple days of riding from Füssen to Munich were flat. It’s easy to remember the few flat sections of whole tour — the Dukagjin Plain, the SW edge of the large Hungarian plain, and the Friuli Plain. That’s it — perhaps about 10 days of flat riding in four months.

IMG_20220729_113324 by bryandkeith on flickr

Every time I go to Germany, I am more and more impressed with the cities and the sights. This was my first time in Bavaria, and, well, the scenery’s pretty good as well.

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Welcome to Bavaria: Füssen and Neuschwanstein Castle

On last year’s Gökova Bicycle Tour we met Sven from Bavaria. If you’re anywhere near it, he said, make the effort to visit Neuschwanstein Castle. So we did.

We crossed the border, crossed the river, and entered the historic center of Füssen. Dang, how does Germany manage to do these historic centers so well? Why is Ptuj dead and Füssen so lively?

IMG_20220726_164624 by bryandkeith on flickr
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Bicycle touring Austria: from the Dolomites to Bavaria

Ferda and I planned this tour as far as the Dolomites. Then we started looking at tickets back to Antalya — from Venice, from Milan, from Innsbruck. Turns out Munich was a lot closer than we realized, and the tickets were the best deal with frequent non-stop flights to Antalya. I still had about three weeks left in my Schengen permission so we had time to enjoy the ride.

We started with a long downhill from Colfosco.

IMG_20220721_112715 by bryandkeith on flickr
Colfosco

We descended into a busy highway corridor and took over an hour that evening to find a place to camp. This castle:

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