My 'repaired' front rack
In Port Szczecin, PL, on my way to Germany, I broke my front rack. It didn't break because a it failed structurally or because a bolt failed. It broke because a new, stronger bolt I put in as a precaution at Robert Mink's house, wasn't tight enough, came unscrewed, and fell out when I had to ride a bad cobblestone road. Then the bottom mounting point of the rack came into contact with the spokes of the front wheel and was broken off. This wouldn't have happened on any road better than bad cobblestone. And, of course, it wouldn't have happened if I had gotten that bolt tight enough, or just left the old bolt in place. It is hard to find a replacement front rack in Poland or even in this part of Germany. Fortunately I was able to cobble (ouch!) together a temporary repair that, with load reduction in the front panniers and avoiding bad roads, should last to Hamburg.
Very urban riding coming into Port Szczecin
I'm glad there was a bike path over this bridge
I took it easy this morning. My back felt OK till I tried to put my socks on. After that I was more careful. Breakfast was good and after breakfast I spent an hour or more reading part of an e-book. Then, around 10 AM, I packed up and hit the road. I had a hard time figuring out how to get out of Szczecin going towards Germany. There was no German city marked on the road signs and even the road numbers were rarely to be found. I finally gave up and asked at a service station. Then when I messed up trying to follow the service station directions, I found a map of Szczecin and it all became sort of clear. You have to go south from Szczecin before you can go west. There is a big bay that you have to go around. Then you get to got through Port Szczecin which is, unlike Szczecin, a big city.
Going through Port Szczecin requires making multiple left had turns on roads with four to six lanes. This is not and easy task on a bicycle!
This one of the intersections where I had to turn left
I became a pedestrian and used cross walks instead of turning across five lanes of traffic
When I finally did get through most of Port Szczecin, the road became bad cobblestone, my rack broke, and I stopped to do my next to the road repair. Then I rode on the sidewalk until the cobblestone ended. Later in the day, I decided that I should reduce the load in my front panniers. I switched the Townie with the right front Ortlieb and then reduced to load in the left front Ortlieb and and increased the load in the - now - right rear Ortlieb. I'll completely repack the Ortlieb panniers tomorrow to further lower my front load. The bike doesn't handle as well with less weight in the front, but I'm now fairly confident that the rack will last till Hamburg even if I do have to ride some bad roads.
My first food/rest break in Germany
Those 'little' things sticking up in the left of the picture are megawatt wind machines
After I got to Germany, I rode through a series of small towns. The riding was good, the road was smooth, and the wind was light. I stopped at a bakery - German bakeries are great! - and bought three kinds of small bread to use, with the cheese I already had, as food for the ride. Then, when I got out into the country again, I leaned my bike against a tree and made a pretty good lunch out of two of the breads and some cheese. I ate the third bread with cheese a couple of hours later. While I ate, I watched wind machine in medium sized wind farm. They had started up - machines that big 'motor' to get started as the wind picked up while I was riding towards them, At this point, it was a side/head wind, but later, riding more to the north, I had a decent side/tail wind.
B109/B110 with narrow lanes and a good bike path
The middle section of B109/B110 had narrow lanes and no bike path, but traffic was light
On the bike path about 10 km from Anklam
B104, the road to Phasewalk and the first 30 km of my riding in Germany, initially had wide lanes. Later the lanes got narrower and the bike path which was often alongside the road started looking more attractive. I started riding the bike paths, when they were available outside of the towns, about half way to Phasewalk. I stuck to the road inside of towns, but rode bike paths whenever they were available - perhaps 20 of the 50 km - between Phasewalk and Anklam. I also saw signs for bike routes on the way to Phasewalk and saw several families with kids on touring bikes that were using those routes.
It was a nice day of riding with lots of smooth roads and smooth bike paths, not a lot way of climbing, winds that were gentle, and roads that often wound their way though neat villages and towns. They only rally straight section was the middle part between Phasewalk and Anklam where I was often able to cruise at 14 mph on a flat road with a gentle tail/cross wind. Nice riding!
As I neared Anklam, I ran into autoroute 20. My mapping software, from 2002, doesn't show it, but it runs a little west of Anklam. As I was reaching Anklam, there was was a little light rain, but, when I got into town, the only real problem was road construction. I knew where I wanted to go, but I ended up taking a round about way to get there because the road construction blocked me - unless I wanted to illegally ride a narrow lane into heavy oncoming traffic - from going in the way I had planned.
The new 1A Hotel where I am staying tonight.
When I got to the 1A Hotel and Pension, the small hotel where I stayed the last time I was in Anklam, there was no sign of the owners. Then some nice folks staying there pointed out an intercom system that called the owners cell phone. I called, he answered, and a few minutes later showed up and greeted me warmly.
Two years ago, I was in Anklam for the first time and looking for a place to spend the night before riding into Poland. I was riding in the direction of some hotels when a man called out to me, in German, from a building he was working on. I responded that I spoke English and he smoothly switched to English. I stopped and he asked if I was looking for place to stay. He told me he owned a small hotel a hundred meters away and would call his wife to let her know I was coming. I did and he did and they are very good people and it was a very nice place to stay. See: www.cs.unca.edu/~boyd/touring/tour06/day38/index,html for more details.
Tonight I am staying in the building he was working on. It is a 100 year old building which had been unused for seven years when he bought it three years ago. Now, after a LOT of work, it is his new hotel. My room is very comfortable, roughly twice as large as my much more expensive room last night, with high ceilings and three big windows. Nice!
It is hard to do interior shots in a hotel room, even with 28 mm lens
This shot was taken from he corner above the TV which is sitting on very nice long desk
There is also a big bathroom behind the wall you see here and a very useful - my panniers are there - hall with a long padded bench in front of the bathroom.