ERIK ŠTURM & MANJA PEČKAJ – Bovec, Slovenia
Our adventures in Corsica started pretty calmly. We settled in camp Calamar on the east coast of the island, approximately 50km south of the town Bastia. We went on an afternoon trip by bike to see what we are “up against” in the first place.
We started ascending almost immediately. The slope, it seemed, had no end in sight, so our thoughts wandered – we observed the countless chestnut trees, cactuses, agaves and other Mediterranean vegetation that made the old stone houses beautiful to the eye and only partially blocked our view of the sea. In surroundings such as these, no slope is too long to “beat”! The descent started very soon from there and we were rewarded for our effort.
On the next day we wanted to do some more “serious” biking, from the coast near the village Cervione to the pass Col d’ Arcarotta, 819 metres in altitude. From there we descended to the village Piedicroce and continued our way to the Col de Prato pass (985 metres in altitude) where we spent the night on a pasture. There were no flat or areas where one could pitch a tent for the whole 50 kilometres. Not to mention that it was all overgrown with vegetation.
Vertical walls were present left and right of our trail (it was carved into the rock itself with minor but constantly present ascents and descents), and mighty and thick trees sprang out of these walls, to our surprise.
Apart from the trees, there were also stone houses, narrow and high, that found their place amidst these mighty vertical walls. The villages, mostly small and comprised of only a few houses, appeared every 20 kilometres or so and each had an old church with a tower.
Loud sounds of rifles firing that aimed at countless birds and some wild boars accompanied us while on the biking trail. Hunting, it seems, is a popular sport here!
On the next morning, we headed from the pass to the next valley toward the village Casabianca and continued toward the coast where we biked along a coastal road and reached the campsite.