Thursday, July 10, 2014

#607 Stockholm - København - Amsterdam

Refined the route. Starting Saturday 12th to 27th July (depending on the winds)

Stockholm-Arlanda - Strängnäs - Katrineholm - Tjällmo - Tranås - Skillingaryd - Ljungby - Astorp - (cross to Denmark) Skodsborg - Vordingborg - (then Germany) Oldenburg in H - Bokel - Ovelgönne - (into Holland) Bad Nieuweschans - Leeurwarden - Den Oever - Amsterdam (finish with a sprint up the Champs-Élysées).

Saturday to Strängnäs 96k 4:40 First 60k with a buckled back wheel but got it fixed thanks to Pelle at Cykelhornan in Enköping.

Sunday: Day 2 to Katrinehom 78k 3;32 Big tailwind.

Monday: Day 3 to Tjãllmo 82k 4:14 Very wet.

Tuesday: Day 4, head wind all day but a v nice ride anyway. 5+ hours, about 100km.
Hotel Alberg very nice.

Wednesday. Day 5. Bit of a battering, 115k in 6:28 huge headwind and tedious hills.

Day 6 89k 4:26. Much better day than yesterday, not so much of a wind and practically flat.
Day 7 to Åstorp 115k bit over 6 hours. Navigated with a map as my Garmin threw a tantrum. Last night in Sweden.
Day 8. A ride to the ferry and a 20 min crossing to Denmark. Met a cyclist called Jens who invited me to stop for tea. Them showed me the cannonball lodged on his wall fired by Nelspn's ships on 1807.

Then on, nearly to Copenhagen to stay with my friend Susanne Nielsen. Went to see the Da Vinchi Exhibition followed by ice cream. Here we are with Eric's Merc.

Sunday Stage 9. 112k to Votdingborg, spent half getting lost and half on one straight 60k road, not that scenic but OK for all that.

Monday Stage 10 
Last 60k in Denmark (some on tracks) then ferry to Germany. Another 30k to hotel.

Stage 11. Made good progress to Bokel 121k 5:58 (including some gravel roads) in fact 95% was ridden on dedicated cycle paths. They are well organised for cyclists in Germany. Last night's hotel smelt of feet, you could hear the people next door, the food was crap and I had to wait, while the staff carried on arguing, before being served. Tonight's is MUCH nicer. A glass or two of a nice Weißwein makes it even better :-)

Stage 12 What a day! Got lost. Got found. Crossed two rivers on two ferries. Went deep in the woods on grass tracks and even some cobbles. Took 6:47 to cover 136k ( longest so far) but actually 9 hours door to door. Knackered. No restaurant near this b&b so am microwaving a ready-meal box of Turkey & Potato - Luxury.

Day 13. Made it to Holland :-) 119k in 5:48. Went over a rickety rackety bridge, not as long as one I crossed a day or two ago. I'm coming to terms with my Garmin GPS. I've deleted the option - Follow Goat Tracks Where Possible. However, can't find an option for Do Not Use Spurious Diversions. (I bought a map so I hope not to be Garminated tomorrow.

Day 14. Woke up to; rain, cold, grey, grim. Not brave enough to ride for six hours soaking wet - so I took the train. On the plus side arrived in Leeuwarden and met up with the lad :-)

Day 15. Took the bus to little fishing port Harlingen Havn then rode over the Afsluitdijk  a dead flat, straight dyke that separates the IJsselmeer and the North Sea. It's 32 k and we whistled over in a straight 55 minutes. Today's total, 45k in a wind assisted 

Last night we stayed in the Orange Room of  b&b run by a couple of chaps. Tonight we are in Den Oever and a very arty b&b run by Ina an art teacher. Both seemed to have been teleported from the 1970's.

Day 16 to Amsterdam 82k stopped on Hoorn for a HUGE coffee. 
Jay escorted me for the last two days. Big Ups.
1440Km Job Done. :-)

Sunday, July 06, 2014

#606 f#@k

I just watched the Beatle's film Hard Day's Night.
First shown in 1964, that makes it fifty years old.
FIFTY YEARS OLD!  . . . . . f#@k

Saturday, July 05, 2014