I left Berlin this morning by riding to a S-Bahn station and taking the S-Bahn to a regular train station where I got a slow train to Dresden. My host helped me get tickets yesterday and a nice young vietnamese man - I think his parents are diplomats in Berlin - rode with me on the S-Bahn and made sure that I got off at the right stop.
A class sedans - my favorite Mercedes - and a smart car
Castle grounds A lot of nice riding there
Frederick the Great's Castle
Boulevard in Berlin
Real peoples park in Berlin
These images were taken while riding around Berlin on Sunday A beautiful city that is easy to get around on bicycle
My bike on the train
It took over three hours, with a train change at about two hours, to get to Dresden. In Dresden, where I have been before, I headed north from the main train station to the Elbe where I was able to get on a radweg along the Elbe and head, not very direcectly, towards the Czech Republic. Its a nice ride with a lot of variety in the radweg, but consistently near the Elbe and easy riding. As soon as I got a few km along on the radweg, I stopped put on my bike shorts and snack.
Where I took a break
Kayaks on the Elbe
After riding 20 or 30 km, I started looking for something to eat, but I have only seen 'Beer Garden' places and they don't appeal. I stopped at a nice shelter which I saw from the train almost two weeks ago when I was travelling from Prague towards Berlin. I made a snack from Nuttella and some excellent German bread my host gave me for this trip. It is so pleasant here that I decided to take a break from riding and start working this ride report / web page. I saw this shelter from the train because it is less than 20 meters from the tracks. Several German passenger trains have come along since I got here, but they are not loud enough to disturb me. One freight train came by and it was loud enough to be annoying.
Where I took my second break and wrote part of this report
Cargo boat, registered in Prague, on the Elbe
Train passing me as I rode the Elbe Radweg
Two boats passing on the Elbe
I rode on down the Elbe, The radweg crossed under the railroad tracks and climbed up the side of the valley till it was 20 or 30 M above the tracks. Riding was harder and the radweg now climbed more, but the views were better and there were actually some places where it looked like stealth camping might be possible. The radweg climbed far enough up above the river that it go noticeably cooler. Then it descended again into the next town. I think it was 37 km from Dresden, but what mattered most to me was that this town, Rathen (?) was a tourist place and had several places to eat. I'd only snacked since breakfast at 7:30 AM and it was now about 4:30 PM.
Elbe Radweg on the other side of the tracks before it started climbing
View from the radweg when it was well above the Elbe
I stopped at the first restaurant I saw and ordered a large beer and a nice fish with potatoes dinner, It was good. After dinner, I decided I would ride on till 6:30 and then look for a place to camp. The radweg went back across the rairoad just before the place where I ate. but it soon went back above the railroad. There were places where you could access the river by going through a tunnel under the rairoad and, glancing through one of those I saw a really nice river access point with a place to park a bike and a nice bench to sit on. it also had promising looking paths going off along the river, so I decided to explore one, on my bike,looking for camping sites. When I started down the path. I was in too high a gear and my attempt to shift quickly down to my lowest gear resulted in a dropped and jammed chain. I couldn't fix it there, so I headed back to the tunnel and out to the radweg/road. As I got out onto the road, I head voices and shortly thereafter, a couple emerged from the tunnel and asked if I needed help with my bike. I explained I just needed to get the chain back on correctly and they walked on. I rode on down the road afte fixing the chain and discovered the biggest town I'd seen since Dresden. That path was obviously NOT useful for stealth camping!
Train passing while I ate lunch
When I tried to follow the radweg through that town, I ended up having another misadventure. The radweg, after some cobblestone, headed uphill, but the road continuesd along the river. I stayed on the road, but it eventually ended at a really old road that went down towards the river. It became a dirt road with mud puddles. I tried, and failed, to ride around one of the puddles and ended up having to stopped and almost falling, with the bike into the puddle. One foot was submerged in the puddle. I had to walk back out, getting the other foot, and some of my clothing, muddy as well. I came close to falling on my back in the mud with my bike and bags on top of me.
Coming into Koniegstein.
This is the town where I had some problems with my bike
and also almost fell in the mud.
After this image, it started to rain lightly so I put away my camera.
After that, I got back on the road and had a long climb, with moderate traffic up a narrow road. Near that top of that climb, the road was one lane for about half a km while the the outer lane was being rebuilt. It looked like part on it has fallen down towards the river. That road came down to Bad Schanden, another very touristy place. I cruised through it looking for a place I could afford to stay. The places I checked were full, so, in light rain, I continued out of town.
I was no longer on the Elbe Radweg - it was across the river with the railroad - so I thought I might have a better chance of find a place to camp. I found one less than a km later. It was under a big tree between the road and the radweg, but well hidden from both. I wasn't the first person to find it, judging from the litter, but it was good enough for my purposes. I set up camp in light rain, but, an hour later it was moderate to heavy rain. That is when I discovered that I had, because I had to set my tent up between two small trees, created a situation that let water running off the tent come in on both sides near the front of the tent. I sort of fixed that problem and went sleep in moderate rain rain about 9 PM.
At 9:40 PM, one of the stakes at the front of my tent came out of the, now muddy, dirt. I woke when the tent collapsed on me. I managed, from inside the tent, to get the stake back in and the tent back up, but I had to put my hands in the, very sticky, mud to do it. I did the best I could to get the mud off of them,then wiped them on my sleeping shirt and went back to sleep. The tent stayed up and the rain let up, so I slept well till about 7 AM. Then I packed and headed back into town for some breakfast. I got quite muddy in the process, but thought I'd managed to look reasonably presentable. However, the lady at the bakery where I had breakfast wasn't very friendly.
After breakfast, when I cleaned up in their restroom, I discovered that the collar of my shirt had mud on it.