Thursday, November 10, 2011

Cycling in Rio and the best ride

OK, riding in Rio's traffic was a little crazy at times. But, avoiding potholes and bumps was probably the hardest task. Overall, it was fun and, like in my childhood riding on the streets of Copacabana and to school, I happily got into riding in between the cars, and even amongst the buses - and there were thousands of them.

Safe? I wasn't there long enough but I felt the drivers didn't mind sharing the roads or sitting behind me in the traffic. When they did, they just changed lanes and overtook me as if I was just another vehicle on the road.

Thumbs up were frequent and there was the occasional salute from the traffic police men and women. So friendly, and warm in a way, it was nice not to feel the get-the-fuck-off-my-road I frequently feel when cycling at home. And if I felt uncomfortable I could just jump on the ciclovia.

I rode from Barra da Tijuca to Ipanema. I rode in the Autodromo Int. Nelson Piquet. I did a couple of bunch rides. I rode to the beautiful southern beaches of Grumari and Prainha and I even rode on cobbles to get to my sister's work to meet her kids.

But, and by far, the best ride was the climb to Corcovado.

I did this ride last time I was in Rio, in fact more than once, and liked it so much I had to do it again... and again. This time(s) I was a bit more comfortable though. I knew the roads and I was riding my own bike. I also listened to my cousin's advice and added the 4.5 km Estrada da Castorina climb to the ride (the video is a small part of it). Thanks Xiko, I am so glad I did it!

And the ride? Well, flat along the coast with a little climb to warm up. Then, up and up towards Tijuca Forest Park, a stop at the Emperor's Table and the descent to Vista Chinesa and Jardim Botanico. Back up the new climb, and off to Alto da Boa Vista, Estrada do Sumare and Estrada Redentor (Redeemer's Road). No need to say where the road ended...

Great views, good roads through fantastic and vibrant rain forest, or coastal jungle as they use to call it. The best.

It was fun and invigorating to be back and to be riding in Rio. Time with my family was priceless and treasurable. What's next? Perhaps it is time to organise a trip for my friends.

Enjoy the video!


Groover said...

I wanna do this ride with you one day...

AMR said...

You certainly will!

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