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Journal for 24-Aug : Whitehorse

Lovely sunny morning. Cycled 15ks before bäckery breakfast.

More lovely cycling, but the headwind - and the prospect of cycling directly into it - had me suffering as I approached the ferry crossing of the Elbe river to Gluckstadt.

Massive queue of cars at the ferry. 4 ferries simultaneously servicing this route.

As an Aussie I hate to say this, but it was hot here today. Over 30C for most of it. And unlike some places (eg New Zealand, Canada), the sun really packs a punch when it's out, just like home.

Flaked out outside the supermarket in Gluckstadt. The other thing I've been having trouble finding apart from public toilets, is water. I'm sure it's around, I just can't find the taps for it. Today I bought 3l of apple juice (on special at the supermarket), drank 1l of it, poured the rest into the plastic bottles I've been carrying my spare water in.

Found the tourist info, and from that the way out of Gluckstadt. Gluckstadt had a public loo (tourist office told me, and there were signs to it) but I couldn't find it.

The Elbe river is tidal at this point, and most of the country here is virtually mudflat. But there are still lots of trees marking paddock boundaries and lining roads, so about half the time I had good shelter from the wind.

I'm not getting lost as often now, but my legs are paying for it. At every sign, and every junction I need to check I am where I think I am, and where I should be. This means stopping (sometimes I get away with doing it while moving), checking both my maps, then getting back up to speed again (ouch).

Found a patch of unoccupied forest (finally) and got to relieve myself.

I never really lost my route today, but I *thought* I had many times. My recommended route has taken me down some awful roads at times, but today it gave me some real crackers i 'd never have found on my own.

Reached the campground at Daldorf at 6:40pm, totally stuffed. It looked a bit uninspiring (to say the least), and I was abandoning ideas of a rest day there while i searched and waited for the manager.

Had it not been for my experience at Worms I might have set up camp and waited for someone to ask me for money. Instead I cycled off (after depleting my snack supply)

20km down some very nice roads I reached what I anticipated being my final turn. Road closed. Like their bike paths, German roads are completely closed for maintenance, dug up, and fixed whenever. The closures are for periods varying from 6 to 18 months.

Thanks to the lake the road went beside, no sensible alternative. There was a sign exempting residents of a town along the road and patrons of a campground I had no information about. As I did not expect to see German road workers beavering away at 8pm, and I could always pretend to only partially understand the signs, I tried to ride through the roadworks. It turned out to be nothing much, just a bit bumpy in stretches, but no bumpier than the parve on the Wesser bike route.

Eventually found my campground by the lake at 8:30pm, and felt I'd fallen flat on my feet again. Cooked tea, played a bit of soccer with some kids, then headed off to have a very much needed shower a15 min before the hot water gets turned off at 10:30.

Bugger, the showers need tokens purchased at the closed park office. "Wass ist 'bugger'?" asked the cleaner. Went for a dusk swim in the lake instead.

Found the going much harder today. Headwind instead of tail.

Made the detour out to Takhini hot springs. This made up the distance I didn't get to ride because of the pilot trucks. Very nice swim, but not deep enough water to do laps. Eventually found someone my own age (8) to play catch with.

Sore knees.

For a town the size of Goulburn, Whitehorse seems to have 10 times the traffic. In fact, Whitehorse itself is a bit disappointing, though I don't really know what I expected. An american town with Wal-Marrt and fast food chains should not have been a surprise.

Did (most of) my shopping. I'll try and enjoy my rest day tomorrow.

Set up camp in the rain.

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