Thursday, June 6, 2013

You take the high road, I'll take the low road

With all that open road, I couldn't stick to the speed limit.
As the Danube continues to rise, the low roads along the banks are flooding and being closed to motor traffic. On alternative routes, traffic chaos ensues, giving morning migraines to thousands of car-bound commuters.

For cyclists, though, the flood's not been a problem. In fact, yesterday on the Buda quay, the flood made bike commuting even faster. I hate to gloat in front of my four-wheeled friends, but when I hit the freshly closed embankment north of Margit híd, I FLEW!!

Reminded me of those magic months a few years ago when the embankment was closed for a sewerage project. People were out on running, skating, pushing strollers and riding bikes, with an abundance of space rarely seen outside of Wyoming.

After rocketing non-stop all the way to the Graphisoft Park, I downshifted to subsonic speed and slalomed through the police road blocks along Királyok útja / Nánási út. (With the exception of one cop who told me I should ride on the sidewalk (according to Hungarian traffic rules, this is actually illegal unless you're under age 12), police basically turned a blind eye to cyclists. This has been a very easy way to get around.

The fearsome Hungarian rendôrség takes charge near Római part.


I rode along Eurovelo 6 route on the riverside for a ways, then through strawberry fields around Budakalász. Finally got up to Szentendre, which is putting its brand-new mobile dike through the paces. If you're curious about what the powers that be have in mind for Római part, this is a good reference. The difference, of course, is that in Szentendre, the mobile dike is merely replacing a section of a conventional earthen dike that has been there for decades. In Római part, they'll have to build it up from scratch, which will mean a drastic transformation of the river bank.

Traffic jam on the Buda embankment

At a low point between Szépvölgyi utca and Tímár utca, the water was already over the road, so had to jump up onto the bike path.

Skaters on the embankment -- what's the world coming to??

At this point, the Eurovelo signage was leading me astray.

This road through Budakalász is restricted to local motor traffic -- but transiting cyclists are no problem.

A U-pick (szedd magad) strawberry field near Budakalász.

Atop the old dike in Szentendre, and looking at the new mobile dike around the bend.

Southern end of the Szentendre mobile dike.

At the north end of the Szentendre dike, it's a simple concrete wall. Workers are doing finishing touches with cut-stone facing.

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