Benediktweg

Day 2: Burghausen to Bad Reichenhall

We could read the ride data and elevation meters from the map. 830m up and 84km long. We knew it was going to be a hard day. And for the most part, we managed it fine, considering it was our second day of the tour, the previous day being a lot less cycling than sightseeing in Burghausen. But ultimately the road won and tore our untrained legs completely off.

The immediate departure from upper Burghausen was fun since the downhill street to the Altstadt is like a raceway ramp. We wove a bit through the few streets to say our goodbyes, then off we went. Christine was confused and annoyed with some constant notifications. Her mobile phone kept welcoming her to Austria. We forgot that just a few meters to the left in the center of the Salzach river is the Austrian border.

Elapsed Time Moving Time Distance Average Speed Max Speed Elevation Gain Calories Burned
07:34:11
hours
05:03:26
hours
84.57
km
16.72
km/h
61.56
km/h
828.00
meters
2,445
kcal

Along the middle part of the day’s route, we came to a large lake, and being on holiday and all, we detoured and found lunch at a cozy place with a terrace overlooking the beach and grassy field before the lakeshore. After some delicious pasta and a few non-alcoholic beers, the day continued meandering amongst the old farms of Niederbayern.

The ride got hard, approaching the 60km mark of the day. We found a few ramps and hills of up to 15% gradient that tortured us for a while. Our mostly lightly packed bikepacking setups made us happy compared to the cargo truck-load we took to Belgium the year before. Happy days to be rid of an extra 20kg of panniers and steel bikes.

The Benediktweg tour was the first trip we took a light bike setup, Christine riding her Canyon Grail SF SL 8.0 WMN, and me with the Sonder Camino Force 1 Ti. Both bikes were gliding smoothly up and down the hills on this segment of the route. And we needed it because this day was the day with the most climbing we expected for the entire trip. Going from a pedestrian 120m to an energetic 830m in one day broke us just a little.

The approach to Bad Reichenhall is quite pleasant and mainly downhill once you conquer 20km of uphill slog just before the relief of cruising into the town. Actually, we departed the official Benediktweg route after one day because our plan detoured us south to Königsee and Bad Reichenhall is the main starting point going into Berchtesgaden.

The town is super lovely, especially the Altstadt center. The buildings and warren of tiny streets are postcard-worthy and have an authentic charm. Even though we had Covid restrictions in effect, indoor and outdoor dining was possible, and the town has much to offer. Our hotel was a Gasthaus with large and classically Bavarian decorated dining areas and a small Biergarten situated directly on the main square.

We stored our bikes in an old cold cellar of the hotel filled with potatoes and kitchen equipment, then checked in, cleaned up, and shot out to dinner in the hotel restaurant. Burgers, beer, and schnapps ended our day. The ride to Königsee is manageable and not too bad, was our last thought before falling deadly asleep.