I don't know about you, but we Bears are getting fed up of this pandemic and the reduced freedom to travel at will. We were fortunate enough to have a super summer holiday on the island of Borkum in July with Vincent and the rest of our Worms family, but that was it!
We badgered our BBF to plan something to get us out of the house for at least a couple of days. Now he has been thinking a lot about cycle adventures he could have. He says he fancies cycling down the Rhine and Elbe Rivers. Staying in B&Bs each night makes the trip expensive and so he thought that camping along the way was the way to go. Staying in B&Bs when the weather is bad. Part of his problem though, is that he is a gadget maniac, loves and uses them all, (iWatch; iPhone; iPad; iPod; hearing aid)but they need power at the end of each day. In a B&B charging is not a problem, but on a campsite? We have heard stories where campers charge phones and leave them in the toilets, not something he was willing to do. We have all the kit so we needed to get out there and see how it goes. To this end our BBF planned a trip of three or four days staying at three campsites marked on a cycle map.
Here at the top of the picture you can see our first intended destination. Each leg of this adventure was to be around 50kms.
Our second destination by a lake near Düren. He thought we should stay here two nights as there was a nice interesting circuit of just over 40kms we could take on the second day.
This the third site chosen off the map was to be the last before returning home!
We had a trial pack and so now all we needed was good weather. On the Friday 3 September the ridge of high pressure arrived so we could set off after lunch, as the first destination was not so far away. However, Alan had ordered another gadget a mini air pump to blow up his mattress and to suck the air out when packing it up. Alexa informed us at breakfast that it was to be delivered that day so we waited and waited.
We all throughly enjoyed being on the road again out in the wonderful fresh air and sunshine.
Now we should mention that our BBF decided at the outset NOT to book or phone the campsites. He felt that this would tend to be the way one travelled down the Rhine. Making a booking meant one was forced to go the distance to get there and did not allow for the spontaneity of going off the beaten track.
The ride to our first campsite in Rosendahl went well and without any problems. The campsite was easily found, though initially the entrance was not and we ended up cycling right round it.
The campsite is hidden in a wood and consists mainly of caravans parked permanently. It had a bit of run down feel to it, but we were offered a site with access to power and close enough to the ablutions to please our BBF. In no time at all we had erected our tent and made ourselves at home.
The day started cool and foggy, but by lunchtime the sun came up and burned off the fog.
In Jülich we discovered an old Citadel which was worth a quick look.
We took our time over breakfast using the wifi to check mail and the route we would take!
When we were not on cycle paths alongside the main road the route took us on minor farm roads and tracks through the country side.
Sometimes we had to share the road with cars which we never enjoy!
Places to stop and rest were few and far between, but when we found one we stopped for a rest and to drink, though our BBF with his water bladder on his back was able to drink and cycle!