Five Days

2019/08/11-15: Lund as Base Camp

We’ve spent five days at Ingrid and Kristian’s, resting, doing errands, and attending to technical issues of missing cables and a dysfunctional cell phone. We enjoyed meeting members of Kristian and Ingrid’s families. On Sunday we were taken out for brunch with their friends Martin and Anna, along with their son Jonah who has just turned two, so he’s close in age to Oskar.

We had set out by bike, expecting only a 2 km ride into town. Kristian had Oskar in a standard cargo bike, but Martin arrived with Jonah in a unique cargo bike, a prototype of their new design. (GinkgoBike) Kristian will use one of these in a cargo bike race next week in Copenhagen. After brunch, Chris and I were allowed to test drive the GinkgoBike, and I nearly came undone when I slammed on the hydraulic disc brakes.

An impromptu 40+ km ride was proposed, so off we went on bike paths and rural roads, stopping at a castle for a snack. Both the dads are powerful competitive cyclists half our age, so despite pushing heavy loads, they set a good pace. We rode towards Malmo and returned by train. We were wearing running shoes rather than cycling shoes, and shorts/trousers which were less than ideal for this unexpected distance. It was great fun, but my nether regions were complaining as we finished.

On Monday, we did errands in Lund and were invited to meet two accelerator physicists for afternoon coffee at the university. Tuesday was a quiet day with overdue blog writing. On Wednesday we took the train to Copenhagen sans bikes, and did a whirlwind of bus and boat tours. August is high season for tourism, and this made it a bit overwhelming.

We also dropped by the Danish Cycling Embassy (advocacy group) office and adjacent Cyclistbutikken, a shop geared towards cycle touring and bikepacking. Here I found a helmet that fit me well and which has a built in LED rear light to boot! I chose a red one that I’m sure will make me go faster. We’d purchased the 1:500,000 cycling map of Denmark earlier from the tourist information office, but here we also bought the necessary 1:100,000 cycling maps that cover North and South Zealand. We’ll use these as we progress south toward Hamburg, not only for navigation, but also to locate “lille lejrplads” (small campsites) along the way. Denmark is too densely populated to allow Everyman’s Right, so instead provides simple sites for self-propelled travellers. They don’t make them easy to find, however. We’ve spent hours learning how to format their coordinates and enter them into the GPS.

Huge thanks to the cyclist we met over ice-cream on the run from Helsingør to Copenhagen on Saturday. He told us about the Danish Cycling Embassy and Cyclistbutikken.

The Øresund fixed link crossing from Sweden to Denmark cannot be undertaken on a bicycle, because it involves causeway, bridge, and tunnel. This means that tomorrow we’ll pack and return by train to Copenhagen, and pedal onward Roskilde to see some Viking ships. Wish us luck finding our first “lille lejrplad” for the night.

M

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