24 April 2023

Day 13 Inner German Border Tour

In the entrance to our hotel there were two Bears to welcome the guests. We had some discussion with the host if the ferry was operating today. 

On the wall in the dining room were many stuffed fish. Something for Steve Slater we thought.

After packing and loading our wire donkey we set off first to the Bank to get some more cash as from here on we were going to be in the back of beyond where cash was king!  

Needless to say the main ferry was no running, nor was this little one. It had Monday and Tuesday off. Our BBF now had to replan the route to stay on this side of the river. He wasn’t too happy as the Green Ribon actually ran along the other bank which was flat, on the West Bank there were a number of hills that had to be negotiated. But did we have a choice, no,  so on we plodded once our BBF had the new route.

The route more or less followed the line of the river and flood plains. The sky behind us was ominous and looked like rain was coming, but thankfully we can say it did not materialise.  

Then came the hard part.

This is actually the down sign for the way we came, but just to prove that our BBF had to peddle hard to get to the top.

At the top was path to an observation tower, so we were parked and our BBF went on up to see.

We think that he was silently relieved that he could not climb up the steps!

Eventually we came to the village of Bleckede where the ferry was waiting just for us before setting off.

We rode straight on and there were only two cars on it.

No sooner were we on than it took off for the other side.

We left the ferry behind us and now cycled on the top of the Dyke. 

The going was easy until the wind came up when it needed a bit more help from the motor.

Here you see how the fence were placed on this side, the middle of the river being the actual Border. It is difficult to imagine now, but these fences and defences went all the way from the Baltic Sea to the Mediterranean Sea!

As the wind got up our BBF tried to stay below the Dyke to get out of it, which worked for a bit.  At this rest stop we found a talking Bank! 

If you scan the QR Code it will tell you a fairy tale.

We came to another watch tower and here the sun was out so our BBF stopped and relaxed on the bench in the sun.

And here you can see the true extent of the Iron Curtain which went across Europe.

By Boizenburg we had to climb out of the valley and found a place where the town had planted 12 trees.

They called them the 12 Apostles and there now were two different versions as to why. One said they were to honour the French Officers from the Napoleonic Wars were buried here and the other that there was a connection to the Prussian/ Austrian War of 1866 when 12 Positions were place to prevent a crossing of the river Elbe by the Enemy.

Just outside the town on the B5 road there was an actual Border Crossing point and the original Checkpoint tower was still there with information boards relating to the Border.

These two boards tell the sad tale of a Michael Gartenschläger who after spending time in a DDR prison for objecting to the border was deported to the West. He however, continued his protesting by taking down the mines on fence. Needless to say the DDR didn’t like this and laid a trap for him and actually shot him when he tried again to remove the mines on the fence.

We crosse the Elbe/Lübeck Canal and then rode into Lauenburg. Our BBF cast about for a place to stay and saw a sign toe the DJH German Youth Hostel. At the first one he came to in the old town they had no room, but told him of a second Youth Hostel which did. The description of how to get there was, “ just go down those three steps and follow the path round.” 

Do they look like three steps to you? But we managed it.

We have a room to ourselves with four bunks. One must make one’s own bed up which is the first thing our BBF did. The Bike is in a bike cellar. We have a washbasin but the toilets and showers are across the corridor.

We are now by Point 53 on the map.



  1. Good to see your progress Alan, keep your spirits up-not far to go now!

  2. Almost there! Found 53 with my trusty magnifying glass. Hope you found a good way home!!! Stay strong, love, Sandy