Cycle Tour Iron Curtain Tour, part 1: Klaipeda-Grense Jakobselv
Dag 3, etape 3: Maglabykärr-Kristianstad
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Added on 30 Jun 2017
on 19 Jul 2017
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by Ottocolor on 03 Jul 2017
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Svalöv, Skåne, SE (213 m NHN)
Kristianstad, Skåne, SE (56 m NHN)
03 May 2017
Sunny, chilly weather, 12-15°C with a brisk easterly wind, at times a strong headwind.
Charlottsborgs Camping & Vandrarhem
SE-291 62 Kristianstad
The third day in the Iron Curtain Tour's four-day introduction from Naesby to Klaipeda. Mainly on minor roads and on bike lanes along major roads.
Text message, May 3rd 8.51 Hi everyone. Your cycling mate has reached Sweden after a long stage with a lot of headwinds. But nice sun. And it shines again today. Arrived in twilight here to my forest lake in loneliness. So beautiful. Had a good time swimming in the lake and cooking in the tent, chili con carne with rice and a cucumber. The dishes are not done yet, so it smells of food in here. So now I have to start. After cleaning and packing I have 120 km across Scania ahead of me. Not a light program. But the wind has settled. My goal is a campsite in Blekinge, another one of the old Danish counties. Along the way, I'll look at Kristianstad if I have the time. Built by Christian IV in Baroque style. Have a good time at home or wherever you are. My son Simon, for example, wanders around the Himalayas. Hugs from Helmuth
Again, the wind blew a lot stronger in the open landscape than in the woods, where I spent the morning to get ready to ride off. It's the time of day when I take care of myself. When I sit on my bike, I have a goal, and when I've reached it, I'm kind of busy getting ready for the night, that's pitching my tent, moving all the stuff into it, get washed and cook and eat dinner if I have not arrived so late that I have had supper along the way. But in the morning, the pace is always slow. Typically I sleep to 8 or 9, unless the sun has warmed the tent to unbearable degrees. This happened only two to three times on the Iron Curtain Tour. Typically I have fallen asleep at 1-2 o'clock in the night, so it's not that I sleep a lot on cycling holidays. But things also take longer in nature, as there is no running water or toilet. If the sun is out and it's warm, I like to swim again, but now I'll do it only if I fancy a dip. Then I make breakfast with coffee on the gas cooker and pack a lunch of rye bread in the lunch boxes. Afterwards I make a big morning toilette using a wilderness mirror with toothbrush, two kinds of bristles, shaving and perhaps sunscreen in the face and baby cream in the buttock to treat my sore bum, which is worst at the start of a cycling holiday. That has to be cycled away. And lubricated. Afterwards, I typically change to bicycle clothes after having coiled around in nightwear or shorts and ten-shirt. And I have to fill in my logbook, where I write down all data from the cycling computer every day. The GPS must be reset by saving yesterday's stage and loading the day's one. Now I only have to pack the clothes in the backpacks, nightwear, sleeping bag and mat and finally to get all the stuff out of the tent and pack it. Without any waste time I spend three hours with all that. So it's about 11 or 12 before all the bags hang on the bike again. There are two rear panniers with clothes, two front panniers of cooking utensils and dishes and with food in the other, a backpack with winter equipment, chargers and spare sanitary items, as well as my papers and some tools and oil for the bike, a handlebar bag of food boxes, cans of energy, bananas and chocolate and my binoculars plus the big drybag with tent, sleeping bag, mat, nightwear and pillows as well as shoes and sandals (if I ride in running shoes like I usually do). The total weight of the baggage is approx. 35 kg.
Today, the start was easy, because it was in a fast pace down the Northern slope of Söderåsen. I had slept at a good 200m altitude. The first village was Kvidinge. On my way into it, I got a little dizzy in my head, because the east wind was really hard. And the 120 km to Valjevik's campground seemed like an insurmountable big mouthful. Well, this was confirmed later, but for the time being, I just had to go at pace I could handle. In Kvidinge I filled my bicycle bottle with water at the church. It was a little awkward to park on one side of the railway track and go quite far to the church on the other side. After Klippan, I already felt hungry, but I made 20 km before I found the boxes in my handlebar bag. A small field road was enough. When I have packed lunch, I do not need much comfort for lunch. Typically, I drink a can of energy drink, if I have one, otherwise just water as today. Energy drink I got at the station in Perstorp. After that followed a bicycle path along the highway 21. I could only ride 14-17 km / h in the strong winds and could now figure out I would not reach Valje in daylight. Kristianstad became my new goal. Thus, tomorrow's stage was about 30 km further, but as it was only planned for 35 km, it was reasonable. Now I felt a lot better, for 90 km's stage was no longer impossible. And suddenly I could again enjoy the beautiful route through the Skåne landscape up and down the gentle hills through pretty big forests. And the weather was wonderful. Hardly a cloud in the sky. Especially the dirt road before Tyringe was really beautiful. I had my coffee break in Hässleholm at a railway station cafe. The idea was to do a little research at the tourist office regarding a campsite in Kristianstad. Since I had not planned to stay here, I did not know where it was. But the building which was the home of the tourist information was closed due to renovation, so I only wasted my time cycling all the way to the railway station, but it was nice to sit inside and sip coffee and eat a cake and some bananas. After Hässleholm the terrain became a little less hilly, but also more woodless and open, and therefore the headwind was now evil, evil, evil. In addition, I passed a place called Skoglösa, which is Swedish for forestless! I damned that place far away. In Önnestad I had a small break with energy drink and bananas on a bench in a schoolyard. Some boys playing on bikes asked me what I was doing. When I said I cycled 90 km in headwinds, they were impressed. It stiffened me a bit for the last stretch to Kristianstad. It was a bit boring big road, but there was a bike path. I wondered how to find a campsite now. If there were any at all. I did not really fancy to pitch the tent in a wood again. Nor was I geared up to it with water and food. But five kilometers before the city, I saw a sign for a campground, and it turned out to be just across the road. Lucky! There was also a hostel which facilities I could use. I pitched the tent under some trees. There was plenty of space in the cool weather in the middle of the week. Now it was just about taking a hot shower and cycle five kilometers into town to find a place that was still open for dinner now at about half past nine. Fortunately, after a couple of failed attempts I found O'Leary's pub very close to the town hall square.
FB-post, May 3rd, 22.39: Hello friends. Sitting at O'Leary's pub in Kristianstad and having wiped a burger along with a Brooklyn ale and the Champions League in the background. The stage today ended up with 91 km instead of the planned 121 km. The headwind proved to be stronger than me today as it slowed me down too much to make it to my goal. I made only 10 km/h in average speed today. It's also quite hilly here in northern Skåne. But very beautiful when the sun shines through a newly sprouted forest with a blanket of anemones below. Sun all day. The tent is pitched on the town's campsite. There I enjoy the amenities after my primitive overnight stay in the forest yesterday. Incredibly beautiful morning there. See the picture. Tomorrow I have to ride a little longer than planned. I want to reach the ferry to Lithuania in Karlshamn at 5, and I can do that. 65 km at today's pace requires 6 1/2 hours. So I have to leave at 10.30. And it always takes three hours from waking up in the tent until I roll out of the exit. So I know when to wake up. Sleep well everybody. Your's Helmuth