July 2022

To Feldkirchen

Being busy lately with presenting the surrounding and most interesting trails to some visitors I had, I have recently gotten a bit wrapped up in making new trails. So – let’s get to it.

As I started July quite a trip, I decided that the last day can’t be worse. Saying that, I must admit that for the moment the desire for more crazy routes has not yet returned. But it won’t be long now, as a new bike is on the way….

Sunday morning turned out to be a bit cooler than the weather forecasts indicated, and I haven’t spotted too many cyclist either. Maybe it’s a matter of vacation’s turns, or maybe that’s how it happens on Sunday morning. In any case, the bike path along the south side of the Ossiachersee, through which today’s tour led, was empty and just right for speeding. No need to pull over into the street to avoid slowing down every now and then in front of other cyclists. Past the lake, unlike earlier, I didn’t ride uphill, but turned onto a dirt road leading directly to Feldkirchen. I usually skip this pretty town on my routes, but this time I rode through still empty city center.


Then a quick jaunt to the round-abound and continue on the bike path north towards Feistritz (this is probably the fourth town with this name in the area, I wonder how they don’t get it wrong) and then Rennweg. Right after the first uphill, steepy but fortunately not too long – about 2km with 10%, then a quick descent along the lake, where I almost skipped my turn and would went somewhere else entirely, without even knowing what I could have missed.

Meanwhile, it turned out that my aversion to unplanned hills that day, through which I eagerly turned back to the right route, allowed me to discover one of the coolest gravel sections in the area.

Premium gravel route

Something that at first looked like „probably-not-this-way” turned out to be a beautiful road in excellent condition. Gentle, with a slight slope, going into forests, fields, groves. Leading around the rocks and the river, well a real marvel, on which one wants to speed as much as possible, although you could probably get it lazy as well. This, however, I was not able to try. Just fantastic 20km of gravel, which could never end at all.

Every now and then one could spot a stream

A river flowing through the forest, along the path, made it even more picturesque It’s not a very common sight, rivers here are always by the forest, or by the road, and here it was meandering nicely between the trees, like in some ancient primeval forest.

I turned again in the northern direction just ahead of Sankt Veit an der Glan, To compensate the earlier pleasant gravel roads, this time I rode along a two-lane road, which was neither pleasant to the ear nor to the whole, because there was no shade anywhere.

I was looking forward to get off again onto less traveled routes, and it took about an hour to leave the main road. Next town now was Straßburg , a respectable old town with a beautiful castle.

Straßurg’s castle

Of course, I didn’t visited that castle I just rushed as hard as I could, because traditionally at the end of such long routes the wind was in my face. When I left Straßburg, more foothills began to appear, and although they were not some mega-difficult, each successive one was unwelcome. Fortunately for the thirsty and tired there were some nice places to rest and add water to your tanks

Reststation in Zweinitz

There were also some nice views around

Gurk river

Just before arriving ti Feldkirchen again, it was possible to take a bit of a breather on a long descent; I had planned to eat something in just Feldkirchen afterwards, but somehow I didn’t come across anything interesting, so I kept going.

I planned the way back this time on the northern side of Ossiachersee – one can find there more campsites and general tourism infrastructure. I only had 15 of the 157km left to go home, my stomach had long forgotten about sandwiches and snacks I had eaten, so I threw myself into the first pizza place on the coast – Santa Lucia in Bodensdorf. I heartily do not recommend it. Probably the worst pizza I’ve had recently. Saying this, bear in mind that after 6-hour drive everything goes in.

So, I made it. I didn’t fall from fatigue, and even hit the town for some more, because that day in Villach, after a two-year break, the famous Kirchtag started.

The entire route was 157km, which took me 6h46min

Route picture taken from Strava.com