This was the last day in Austria, we would be entering Slovenia but one more pass stood in the way. Despite not spending that much time in the country, we both agreed that Austria had held some of the best days of riding we had done so far. The scenery was always amazing and the climbs, even though they were tough, we really rewarding. That said, it was going to be nice to get down out of the mountains for a bit and have some days without big climbs.
The lake that morning was covered in a thin layer of mist as we left, a bit earlier than usual. We rode out along quiet Alpine back roads at first, up in the hills, before descending down into a valley an joining up with a main road.
Every descent we had to make was a bit disheartening, we knew there was one more pass to cross before we got into Slovenia. We passed through our last Austrian city of Klagenfurt, stopping for some breakfast out of an Aldi and then started out towards the pass and the border with Slovenia.
One long, curving descent into a wide river valley later and we were at the foot of the Lobl Pass which would climb, according to our map, up to 700 m, then descend, then kick up again to 1300m. There also seemed to be a tunnel near the peak, hopefully we could use it.
This final pass ended up being the hardest of the Alsp. It was very hot and the route was steep. It started with a steep initial climb, as most passes we had crossed had, but then kept going steep as it started up to 700m. We then descended for a bit before climbing again and then more steep climbing and 2 hours after we started we reached the tunnel.
With some relief we saw we could ride through it on the footpath and the cool, dark downhill of the tunnel was so refreshing. We crossed the border in the tunnel, it had taken some work but we crossed into Slovenia.
From the border to Bled wasn’t far, maybe about 40km. We descended and then rode along a small road that skirted the mountain, rising and falling, and then one last downhill all the way (almost) into Bled. The changes from Slovenia into Austria wasn’t that noticeable at first.
Having both been to Lake Bled before we weren’t blown away by the place. It is very nice of course but it was a bit strange for both up of us to be somewhere familiar after over everything be new and exciting almost every day.
We went into the Bled campsite. It was packed, every camper van and caravan spot was full but they could still squeeze in backpackers and cyclists. We found a nice enough spot and lay all our stuff down, and then lay down ourselves for a well deserved day off.