Week 3 : Bremen – Stroby (DK)

From Bremen naar Lauenbrück (63 km) – Hamburg (51 km) – Bösdorf (88 km) – Weissenhausser Strand (38 km)– Puttgarden (49 km) – Ore Strand Camping (61 km, DK) – Stroby (64 km)

Week 3 was a quiet week, climate-wise, no rain or tempests.The trajectory in Germany became heavier, with more and longer slopes.Once I even had to push my bike uphill… I am sure this is going to happen more often, once in Norway on the steep slopes around the fjords.

Bremen – Due to a lack of time, I only crossed the city on my way to HanseCamping, in the northern part. This camping was noisy, expensive and not very accommodating for tent campers, so I decided not to stay and to move on to Lauenbrück the next day. On HanseCamping I again met a tent dweller: A Danish man who works in Bremen and who lives for three months in a tent while he is looking for an affordable apartment in Bremen. Fortunately, he had a large Coleman tent, so he was beter of than the poor Werner Dieter in his cheap minitent at the camp site in Meppen.

Lauenbrück – De ride to Lauenbrück was very nice, under a deep-blue sky. After Bremen, Campingplatz Alte Löweninsel was an oasis of peace and quiet, located on beteween a few lakes and a little river. The campsite also had to rows of very impressive, age-old Taxus trees. I had never seen Taxus trees of this size! The internet connection was fast, so I decided to stay a day to work and to swim in the nice pool they have.

Hamburg – Until Harburg I followed rout 75, which had a fairly good cycling lane. The highlight of this day was the pair of cyclists’ gloves that was given to me by Guido Wehnert from AtlasTitan.
After Harburg I traversed the old harbour of Hamburg, with a few photogenic old port buildings. I crossed the Elb via the very nice St.-Pauli Elbtunnel. On the other side of the Elb, I had to climb a bit to Ossenstrasse, where I had to pick up English-language flyers. It had been another schorching-hot day, so I decided the treat myself on a cool Tonic at the terrace of a Greek restaurant. The owner of restaurant Xenios and his staff even gave a very nice Paypal donation, which made me extremely happy!

Bosdorf – After Hamburg a long and very tiring cycling day followed: 88 km, the first 50km via miserable roads alongside big roads, that last 30 fortunately via smaller rural ways and alongside the Plöner lakes. The (big) camp site was quiet, but I was actually too tired to enjoy it. Moreover, during the sweaty climbs and wind-chillish descents I caught a snotty cold, so I crawled out of my tent the next morning with a very heavy head.

Weissenhauser Strand – Cycling from Bosdorf to Puttgarden in one day was impossible in these circumstances, so I decided to take a midway stop at Weissenhausser Strand, a huge holiday resort with camp site. This is not really my thing, but a quiet evening walk along the beach was very enjoyable.

Puttgarden – De ride to Puttgarden went along small rural roads and it was less hillish than the days before, so I had a good time, apart from the very last stretch on the Fehmarn island, where I had to cope with a very strong wind.

Ore (DK) – Taking the Scandlines ferry to Rokdby, DK, was a nice experience. A cyclist pays no more thant 17 euros. Entering Denmark was a real relief. It is so much quieter than Germany and cycling road are more than decent. Moreover, I was welcomed by a very strong tailwind, so I went faster than anticipated. Only the crossing of the old and fairly long Storstrom Bridge was difficult because of the strong wind bursts from the left, which almost pushed me against the railing.

Stroby – After Ore Strand Camping I took off via road 151, which goes in one straight line to Copenhagen. After a few kilometers, however, the cycling road stopped, so I decided to take an alternative rural road which was about 20 km longer. I was rewarded, though, with very nice scenery along lakes, fjords and rural and forrest roads. I also saw a tree with a trunk that was wider than my bike!

So far, the trip via cycling paradise The Netherlands was marvellous. Germany is less convenient for long-distance cyclists and alternative rural roads would add to many kilometers to the teller. Landscapes in northern Germany are also fairly monotonous: fields interspersed with small forrested areas.

Another thing which struck me: Most Dutchmen who heard what I was doing, replied: ‘Wah, amazing! Respect!’ and they promised to give a donation. Most Germans looked at the sky and said: ‘ ‘Wahnzin’ (madness), and kept their money purse closed. Would different peoples have different mentalities after all?

Dwars door Hamburg met de fiets