|Bike touring in Australia|
One way to avoid time constraints is not booking any transportation in advance which is most easily achieved by starting from home. As the only thing I could call home now is the place where my storage unit is located I will start directly in Berlin. No flights to catch, no trains to board - I have never started a trip that easily.
From there I plan to cycle up to Denmark visiting friends in Northern Germany on the way. I will spend plenty of time in Denmark taking advantage of the extended bike route system there before taking the ferry to Sweden. There again I want to use a bike trail called "Sverigeleden" to make my way up North and cross into Finland. And now comes the beauty of this trip: If I run out of time or don't like it, I don't have to cycle all the way but can take a ferry over to Finland. Finland does not have that many bike routes, but there is the Baltic Sea Cycle Route and Via Finlandia that can take me to Helsinki where I will take the ferry to Tallinn. In the Baltic States there is the Baltic Sea Cycle Route again and the Tour LatEst. I could theoretically cycle from the Baltic States all the way back to Berlin on the international bike route R1 but I doubt I will have enough time left. But again: The beauty of this trip is that I can just take a ferry back to Germany from Klaipeda. So with all these possibilities of shortcuts via ferry I hope not to encounter any time constraints this time. I am planning on being back to Germany around September 1st to start my next long hike across Europe.
|My bike set up|
The other half of the preparation concerned my bike. I spent a couple of evenings at my local bike club and with my friend Wulf and in the end I had changed the oil of my Rohloff hub, put on a new back tube and tire, changed brake pads and gear shift cable. Already having a true and tested bike set up helped a lot. I basically just had to do a tiny bit of maintenance and get my old bike gear out.
I am most worried now about the weather. I have spent the whole month of May in Britain basically freezing my ass off. And now I am going even further North! I just hope the weather improves and summer finally arrives. Updating this blog will be another challenge: Usually I buy a SIM card for every country I hike in but I'll be passing through so many countries in such a short time that this does not make much sense. I will rely on free wifi and my smartphone. Also I have not cycled long-distance for quite a since 2010 and wonder how I will get back into it.