Day 17: To the Caspian Sea
Leaving Alborz Mountains
Around 40 km were between us and the Caspian Sea when we stopped yesterday after almost 140 km and stayed the night at a forest camping. The night was not particularly quiet because the camping was right next to the highway, but we were tired enough to get the sleep we need.
In the morning we left the Alborz Mountains and reached the town Amol, in which we found a bakery with fresh bread, and hence our breakfast. After that, we continued our ride to the coast of the Caspian Sea and reached our goal in less than 1 hour after Amol.
Caspian Sea – or Lake?
A little background research: It is still disputed whether it is a sea or a lake. The reasons are of economical nature because the Caspian Sea is rich of natural resources. By international law, a Sea’s resources are split by the territorial slice of the Sea it borders, whereas a Lake’s resources have to be shared among all littoral states equally.
Anyway, for us it did not matter. The water is salty, that I can confirm, and it is also not very warm at this time of the year, so my swimming session was limited to about a minute. In addition, the beaches unfortunately are also polluted with garbage and not especially beautiful. All in all I can say that I cannot recommend that beach to any beach-tourists, but it was still nice to reach the Sea once in my lifetime.
Overnight in private apartment
We spent already many nights with local families, but tonight is special: The family actually left us their whole apartment and went to a relative’s apartment overnight. I was really surprised how much they trust us foreigners. I would never let someone I have met during the day alone in my apartment overnight. But it is again a clear proof of the Iranian hospitality which I love so much.
Max elevation: 339 m
Min elevation: -3 m
Total climbing: 173 m
Total descent: -421 m
Total Time: 09:43:36