Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Day 6: All'Acqua to Brig-Reid


We woke up to another day of beautiful weather. It was in the 70s as we left the hotel, and we climbed at exactly the right pace so that the temperature didn't rise or drop as we approached the summit. This was my first climb of Nufenen pass from the East, and it's definitely the easier direction.
From Tour of the Alps 2011

While not a spectacular road, the view from the pass was pretty, with white peaks all around us. The descent was also characteristic of Swiss roads: smooth grades, easy corners, and polite traffic.
From Tour of the Alps 2011

Having had trouble the last few times sync'ing up, I decided that we shouldn't risk meeting in the big town (Brig), but opted for Fiesch, which looked small enough that we wouldn't have trouble finding each other.

At Ulrichen, things warmed up as I made the left turn s Brig along the main road. While there were bike paths, I figured that since the road descended towards Brig I could keep up with traffic. I was wrong. The climb out of Ulrichen valley wasn't long, but it was a gentle grade which meant that I was going slow enough to be annoyed by traffic longer than I expected. Once past the first set of rolling hills, however, I could zip along at speed enjoying the views.

I started seeing ads for various sights and things to do in the area, indicating that this was at least tourist/ski resort area, rather than built up towns. At Fiesch, we found each other with no problem, put the bikes on the car, and drove down towards Brig, discovering that the descent from Fiesch to Brig was anything but boring, and indeed quite pretty and worth riding the next time we were in the area.

Brig itself was smoking hot, but fortunately the train station had the tourist information center in it, and was itself quite cool. We arrived too early for the tourist information center, but found the supermarket and bought ourselves a supermarket lunch. Once the tourist information center opened, we found that a suitable place to stay would be Brig Ried. We drove the car to the center of town, got out the bikes, and rode up the hill in 100F temperatures. By the time we got to Brig Ried I was quite ready to stop, provided the hotel rooms were cool.
From Tour of the Alps 2011

We found a non-descript hotel and XiaoQin and I spent the afternoon at the swimming pool that I'd spied while riding up the hill while Phil stayed and read. When the weather had cooled down enough to contemplate dinner, we drove down the hill and had dinner in the middle of town. I was very impressed by the A180 at this point: it had taken us until now before we needed to gas it up!

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