Leaving Guadix from our cave accommodation … cave houses are everywhere and recognisable by chimneys out of hills and usually a piece of material draped across the entrance.
We are in for a good climbing day at least for the first 27km. Strategically mapped to avoid any forbidden highways, that was easy as there are suitable options today.
We pass through Purullena only 7km into our ride and on a nice downhill, there is a cave museum. ‘I think we should stop and have a look’ that we did and glad. The family home was open and the two houses above displaying the historic set up and memorabilia. The family is in the process of extending … one area is being dug out. Fascinating to say the least Purullena is known in the Province of Granada as the Troglodyte City. Today there are more than 400 families living this way of life.
Off we go the take a turn to the left away from the highways, passing by many rugged hills with familiar chimneys indicative of cave houses. The climb was unforgiving as we went through a couple of small towns. We met an Italian tour cyclists coming in the opposite direction … he restored my confidence staying his mapping has sent him up strange directions also.
Feeling the serenity with no trucks, a handful of cars and a scattering of road cyclists, in fact more road cyclists than cars today. I’m not sure serenity and 27km of climbing should be said in one sentence, though. The landscape changed dramatically, the bare rugged mountains became tree covered. The pine scent filling the air was pleasant as it got hotter. I love the smell of pine forests.
After a couple of hours we reached the peak … a momento scratched on the road that we had made it, well done … I’m sure it was for us. We met some road cyclists interested in our travels, they were out training for a 200km race next month in the Pyrennes. They were going back to Granada then doing some more hills in the Sierra Nevada … ‘what!!! … you are doing that today as well!!!’ Yes he said.
Although we were on the downhill now there was a bit of climbing sections but very little, a lake down below was stunning, the blue water and the rugged rocks … further on it was dammed.
‘Okay … the next town we get lunch’ says John, the village of Dudar 14km out of Granada hit the spot. Tables and chairs out the front of a bar … the publican suggested a table inside … good choice it’s rather hot outside. The locals look at us with enquiring eyes as we say ‘hola’ A 2 beer lunch, I think we have earned it and a Caesar salad each … the publican tried to upsell with meat, dessert, coffee. 14km to go … no thank you. We leave … it’s got hotter … 39C at one stage on garmin.
It’s so nice to be guided to the hotel through the streets without thinking … right to the doorstep … thanks garmin, well Done!
Now the work begins … 3 nights here to see what we can.