Pedaling from the Black Forest to the Yellow Sea
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Day 220 (China): just before Yupian - past Mingfen (back in Central Asia?)

daily distance: 137km
total distance: 12,529km
riding time: 7-8h

Yupian didn’t hold much in store for me … except for this statue (a version of which I had seen before) …

and this formation of policemen, which marched through the whole of the city. And I wasn’t quite sure of whether to take that shot or not. A hord of angry policemen on the chase …

Once out of the city, I thought I was on the wrong road. It was badly surfaced and so different from what I have grown used to over the last few days. The markers were there alright, but it was narrow and the asphalt broken all over the place. This was to last all day long, until I got to Minfeng. It was bad … and I sort of felt like I was back in portions of Central Asia. And I was tired. My tires seemed to be glued to the road, my legs weren’t willing to move any and I didn’t really know what to make of it all. I kept taking breaks needlessly … well, I guess they were necessary. But nothing seemed to make sense. The tailwind that I had in the morning sort of helped, but when the road is too bumpy, high speeds just aren’t possible.

It was then desert, desert, desert … all day long. Ugly desert too. Vast expanses of nothingness. This was about as good as it got.


Mingfen seemed to be OK, but there was a problem with finding a place. Most turned me away, ostensibly because I am a foreigner. The one place that would have had me tried to rip me off and so I left Mingfen again. I bought what I needed for dinner and the next day, headed out to find a suitable spot. Still no shower and no laundry done and 300km away from Qiemo. Ouch …

One of the readers asked me how I was doing these days and this question prompted me to think about this today. Actually, I am doing fine. There are certain times when it is difficult to be by myself … but for the most part I am really happy. Things are good. The bike seems to be OKish right now and I am doing well. I will have to take a break sooner than later as the distances that I am pulling at the moment are just too great.

Just FYI and if you are really paying attention to the markers and the distances, there has been a jump in the markings, dropping by about 45km between entering and leaving Mingfen. And believe me, that place isn’t that large.

I spent the night under the roof of a shed, about 10km past Mingfen - not far from a cemetery.


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