Montepolciano to Cortana 47.4 km 408.3 km so far

Yesterday, after a tough day of hills and gravel we gave the bike a rest and explored the town of Montepolciano, another medieval hill town. We met a number of other cyclists, shared stories of the road and compared notes on equipment and tour operators. We feel like we are sort of part of a community.

A Montepolciano street view.

Today we set off again. Our day was shorter and more moderate with a big downhill at the beginning and most of the climbing right at the end as we made our way into yet another historic walled city on a hill. 

Tobacco harvester dumping its load. It’s amazing how this machine can cut the bottom leaves of the plant and not damage the rest of it.

Most of our day was spent in the relatively flat valley. While a lot of the fields were in wheat or sunflowers, which were already harvested, we did stop and watch a machine stripping the bottom leaves off of tobacco plants, and got to see a farmer plowing. The plowed fields here look really messy, with clods of dirt bigger than my head all over the place. The farmer we saw today was pulling a two furrow, rollover, plow with a 100hp+ tractor, putting the plow down nearly 18 inches. The soil is deep here and we are not seeing a lot of stones coming up, but the soil is really clumpy. 

The view from the Montepolciano wall just down the street from our hotel.

We’re getting close to the end of the ride. Just two days left.