13.5 kg Inspiration: The best bikepacking and cycling books

It's February and outside it's cold, icy, unbearable, at least that's how it feels. While I can "fortunately" still rely on my protective layer of extra winter fat, Jana struggles with the low temperatures and the desire to get on the bike seems to be a long way off.

But hey, don't worry! We still have a plan to distract us from the gloomy weather. Because last year, we got a taste for new destinations and adventures through our bikepacking trip on Vestkystruten. And what better way to do that than to daydream in the freezing cold with inspiring books about bikepacking and cycling?

We've collected a few of our favorite books and will feature them in this blog post. 13.5 kg full of inspiration that will make you pedal as soon as the sun shines again.

Cycling Through A Pandemic

"Cycling Through A Pandemic" is a 350-page hardcover book that features the stories and photographs of cyclists* around the world, who escaped the never-ending news cycle during the COVID-19 pandemic by escaping into the vastness and tranquility of nature on their bikes. These are the stories of women cyclists who took adventures during the pandemic.

This book is about people who were looking for a break from the corona crisis and the constant news. They take advantage of the gaps between lockdowns, or the easing of restrictions, to escape briefly into the vastness and tranquility of nature on their bikes. The stories and photographs in Cycling Through A Pandemic show how bicycling was a way for many people to cope and relax under the strain of the pandemic.

Be inspired by the amazing stories and dive into the world of bikepacking during a global crisis. You'll see how cycling can be not only a sport, but a means of coping and relaxation. "Cycling Through A Pandemic" is a must-read for those who are passionate about bikepacking and adventure, but also for those who are simply looking for inspiration to start their own adventures on a bike.

Format: 29 cm x 22,5 cm x 4,5 cm

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Orbit 360

Our friend Nils Laengner has published "Orbit 360", an inspiring 268-page hardcover coffee-table book that shows how diverse and adventurous bikepacking and gravel riding can be in Germany.

In the book, Nils accompanies various riders on the routes of the Orbit360 series. He shows what makes the rides special, from tense muscles on the mountain to the unbridled joy of a completed stage finish. The great photos show not only action shots, but also magical landscapes in which you almost disappear. The protagonists' accounts of their experiences are intended to encourage readers to dare their own adventures.

At the beginning of each chapter, the characteristic points of the route are presented. With the QR code at the beginning and end of the book, you can go directly to the Komoot Collection by Orbit360. There is also a chapter about bike essentials, which presents important bikepacking products for one-day and multi-day tours. With the information in the book, you can go on a big ride with confidence.

Format: 21.0 cm x 27.0 cm

Right Ride - One

"Right Ride" is an inspiring book that focuses on feeling rather than performance. It combines inspiration, motivation, photography and design with enthusiasm for entertaining (road) bike rides and intense stage tours in great areas that are not far from your doorstep. As a special highlight, we have also contributed two routes in this book that you can follow immediately by simply scanning them or starting them on your smartphone.

The book offers you destinations, landscapes, cafés, gastronomy, sights and accommodation for your perfect road bike tour. With over 4,200 km to follow, tips on cafés, restaurants and sights, and routes with QR codes to start directly, you'll always be motivated for your next adventure.

This deluxe edition of the book is bound in a high-quality linen cover and contains more than 165 photos as well as portraits of 20 athletes who take you on their favorite routes and show you where they relax, recharge and enjoy. 40 rides are waiting for you in Germany and Austria. Meanwhile, two more books from the series have already been published.

Format: 16 × 21 cm

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While the first three books presented were all self-published, the next books are all from the renowned design publishing house and are promising a captivating read for anyone who is passionate about travel, adventure and cycling. Those who are familiar with gestalten Verlag know that you can always expect high-quality photography and text here. With the next books to be featured, you can look forward to a breathtaking combination of inspiring stories, fantastic landscapes and unique snapshots.

Nordic Cycle: Bicycle Adventures in the North

You can experience a breathtaking bicycle journey through the Arctic landscapes with "Nordic Cycle: Bicycle Adventures in the North" by Gestalten. Co-authored with mountain biker Tobias Woggon, the book offers both practical instructions and stunning photographs and stories of bike trips in Greenland, the Faroe Islands, and the Nordic countries.

Experience the fabulous snowy landscapes where civilization seems to be non-existent and combine radical touring, camping and cooking with the best that local nature has to offer. Be inspired by this journey of discovery through the Nordic landscape and explore some of the most popular bike trails and terrains.

"Nordic Cycle" is an exploration of regions, people, and food on a mountain bike, with stunning photography and aerial views. Discover illustrated maps and routes, follow the path of Tobias Woggon on his adventure, and learn 16 recipes with step-by-step instructions that pay homage to regional cuisine in the Nordic countries.

Unfortunately, I have to mention that for us as vegans, there is not really something there. But it's actually about cycling and discovering the world, not about the recipes. Still, you can get inspired by the breathtaking landscapes and adventures.

Format: 26 cm × 21 cm × 2.5 cm

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Bikepacking - Exploring the roads less cycled

"Bikepacking - Exploring the roads less cycled" is the ultimate book for all cyclists who want to take their adventure on two wheels to the next level. It was voted one of the best cycling books in 2021 and, as already mentioned, is published by the renowned gestalten Verlag.

In this book, you will find an insight into the world's most famous cycling routes, which are a paradise for bikepackers. On a tour on two wheels, driven only by your own motivation, you can explore new terrain on little-traveled paths and let yourself be enveloped by a feeling of freedom.

The book's 288 pages are packed with practical tips and tricks that will help you plan your own expeditions. Whether you're already experienced or just an occasional weekend bike rider, authors Robert Klanten, Andrea Servert, and Stefan Amato have carefully compiled background information and inspiration to help you have an unforgettable reading experience.

With stunning photos, inspiring information, and great tips, this book will inspire you to get right on your bike for a multi-day tour. The illustrated maps and routes will help you plan your adventure, and you'll be thrilled by the stories and experiences you discover on every page.

Format: 22.5 × 29 cm

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One Year on a Bike - From Amsterdam to Singapore

"One Year on a Bike - From Amsterdam to Singapore" is an absolute dream for all adventure lovers on two wheels. Martijn decided to leave the comfort of his car and the stress of everyday life behind and go on an intercontinental bike trip. On his way from Amsterdam to Singapore, he left the routine behind and set out on a slow and unforgettable journey.

The book takes you on a journey through the eastern European fields with their yellow rape and the welcoming culture and community in Iran. "One Year on a Bike" is a colorful chronicle of what can happen when you leave your normal path and embark on extraordinary self-discovery and breathtaking landscapes. Martijn shares not only his equipment and knowledge, but also his passionate love of adventure that led him on this journey.

Spanning 368 pages of great images and profound entries that explore cultural experiences, the beauty of an ever-changing landscape, trusting strangers, and much more, "One Year on a Bike" is a visual adventure. It documents not only the good times, but also the challenges, inspirations and everything in between. A must for those seeking adventure!

Format: 24 cm × 32 cm

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Two Years On A Bike - From Vancouver to Patagonia

"Two Years on a Bike - From Vancouver to Patagonia" is the sequel to the just mentioned successful travel book "One Year on a Bike - From Amsterdam to Singapore". Martijn Doolaard once again got on his bike and embarked on another epic journey, this time taking him from Canada to Patagonia in Argentina. This book is a real treat for anyone inspired by impressive feats and planning their own bikepacking adventures.

In "Two Years on a Bike" Martijn shares his unforgettable experiences and authentic feelings with us. He describes his ups and downs, his friends and emotions, his lovers and heroes. The accompanying photos are breathtakingly beautiful and add an extra dimension to the story.

Martijn shows us what it means to travel by bike while being at home in the world. Through his minimalist life with only the most necessary things in his saddlebags, he explores the world in an exceptional way. The tips and tricks he learned on his journey can also be helpful for other adventurers.

With "Two Years on a Bike" you get a wonderful book that offers a perfect balance of visual beauty and experiential storytelling. It's a book that will take up a permanent place on your coffee table because it's just too beautiful to put away. The book itself is of high quality and when you turn the pages it feels more like a dive into Martijn's journey than a simple book.

Martijn has given us an unforgettable insight into his world with this book and allowed us to experience his memories, his thoughts and his incredible journey of two years on the bike. We can only thank him for sharing with us his unforgettable images, his reflections and two years of his life.

Format: 24 cm × 32 cm

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Grand Bikepacking Journeys: Riding Iconic Routes Around the World

"Grand Bikepacking Journeys - Riding Iconic Routes around the World is a comprehensive guide to the world's most iconic bike routes, which are a bikepacker's dream.

In this book, the follow-up to the successful (and aforementioned) "Bikepacking," suggests Stefan Amato must-ride routes around the world, such as the Iditarod in Alaska, the Trans-Pyrenees between France and Spain, or the Cross Cape Route in South Africa.

Stefan describes the history and geography of each route along with hidden treasures (no, not gold treasures) and provides practical tips for planning, equipping, and overcoming the unique challenges along the way.

And the best? Our friends Sabina and Robin aka Farawayistan from Sweden have already explored two of the routes and their photos are featured in the book: the Annapurna Circuit Trek and the Pamir Highway route.

At 272 pages, this book is a must-have for anyone ready for their next adventure.

Format: 22.5 cm × 29 cm

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We hope ...

... that our recommendations for bikepacking books have excited you as much as they have us! There are so many inspiring stories and adventures out there to be had by bike. Whether you're looking for new routes, practical tips, or just inspiration, these books have everything your bikepacking heart desires. So what are you waiting for? Put the winter blues aside and let yourself be infected by the fascination of bikepacking. See you next time!

Our first Bikepacking Overnighter in Denmark

This weekend in April marked our second wedding anniversary, and we wanted to celebrate it in a special way. So, we got on our bikes and set off on a bike packing adventure that took us to the islands of Sylt and Rømø. The sun was shining all the time and the scenery was breathtakingly beautiful, but unfortunately, we also had to contend with fierce gusts of up to 50 km/h. In addition, Jana's gears broke down after only a few kilometers, which meant that she had to ride the entire tour in only one gear. Nevertheless, we didn't let it get us down and stuck to our goal. In this blog post, we share our experiences with you and reveal how we finally prevailed against the odds.

First stop: Morsum cliff

Early in the morning we took the train from Hamburg-Altona to Sylt and got off in Morsum after almost three hours on the train. Our first stop on this day was the Morsum cliff, which we had wonderful memories of from our last visit to the island. We wanted to have our second breakfast there and enjoy the view. During the short ride there, we already noticed that it was going to be a windy day. But we didn't let ourselves be deterred and set off. After all, we had just arrived and still had a lot ahead of us that day. When we finally arrived at the Morsum cliff, we were once again amazed by the beautiful view we had. We briefly ate a snack and then set off again.

Nothing is worse than a headwind, Jana thinks. Headwind is her final opponent. Therefore, we hoped that the wind would still turn that day. We set off along beautiful but bumpy dirt roads and then drove through Keitum, which is always an eye-catcher with its beautiful old Frisian houses. Just as we were leaving the Sylt airport next to us, our stomachs came forward. Unfortunately, the bar at the cliff had not been enough to satisfy our hunger. Actually, we didn't want to include Westerland in our route, but it was the closest place at that moment. We still had a score to settle with Sylt and wanted to try fries again. Maybe you remember our Sylt circumnavigation, where we had searched in vain for a portion of fries. This time we were more successful and found what we were looking for at the "Münchner Hahn". Of course, why not eat fries on a North Sea island at a snack bar with a Bavarian connection? There was nothing closer. Anyway, full and satisfied, we set off again.

We continued on our way along the west coast, when suddenly Jana's gearshift gave up the ghost. She had noticed before that something was wrong, but now she did not shift at all. We had had problems with the Di2 and the connection to the battery at home before, but we thought we had it under control. We were wrong. And of course, we didn't have the right tools with us. There it was, our first learning for the next tour. So now Jana was standing there with only one gear, but she didn't give up. We had planned a short stop at a beach, which was beautiful on the one hand and had a clean toilet trailer on the other hand. At the dune that lay between us and the beach, Jana then unfortunately had to push, the ramp and the surface were in conjunction with the luggage on the wheel and the wrong gear for her so not rideable. I could have saved myself the "Who loves his bike, who pushes" saying when passing, but sometimes I talk first and then think.

Being on Sylt by bike is always a highlight for us. This is how you get to the most beautiful corners of the island, places that you might only be able to reach by bike or on foot. Of course, the island is always full of tourists, including e-bike tourists. But hey, we are tourists too, so we have no right to complain. After all, we also want to see and enjoy the beautiful places. So what makes us "better" tourists than others? Nothing. So let's stop complaining and be happy that so many people want to discover the island and its beauties.

Unfortunately, we had to change our actual route a bit because we were not quite in timing anymore. The headwind and the broken gearshift were not really helpful. We therefore decided to skip the Ellenbogen, the northernmost point of the island (and Germany), this time, even though it is beautiful there and the north of the island is our favorite place. Instead, we wanted to take a ferry earlier at the List harbor and thus have more time on Rømø. Jana has never been to Rømø, but I always rave about it so much that she was very excited. We already knew Sylt, but Rømø had so many secrets in store for us. So, we made our way to the harbor and looked forward to our next adventure island.

The Sylt ferry was already waiting in the harbor and was about to depart. Perfect timing! With the ferry, you only need 30 minutes from Sylt to Rømø. A ticket for one person including the bike costs 12 euros. Unfortunately, there were no really good places to leave our bikes on the ferry, or we overlooked them. So, we decided to stay with them and hold them. As a result, we regrettably saw nothing of the landscape during the crossing and were also annoyed by the alarm systems of the cars next to us set off by the vibrations. But after all, we were soon at our destination and were looking forward to exploring Rømø.

The ferry docked on time in Havneby (the harbor might look familiar if you've seen the Roman Polanski movie "The Ghost Writer") and we were allowed to get off the ferry after all the cars. We were seen off by obviously good-humored, singing sailors and headed towards Sønderstrand. Rømø is a beautiful island that somehow manages to captivate people. The sandy beach is endless and the sky is so infinitely blue. We were lucky that the weather was on our side and the sun kept shining. All of a sudden, the wind was gone, too. How great! It was allowed to stay like that.

It only took a few minutes for a real vacation feeling to set in. I wondered what it would be like if we were to stay here for a little longer, maybe even a whole month. With our jobs, that's quite possible. The only catch is our cat, which unfortunately prevents us from doing so. But how nice it would be to go out by bike before or after work or for lunch break and lose ourselves directly in this beautiful Scandinavian landscape. It would be quite something to be able to work in such stunning surroundings. However, I also have to admit that Rømø is quite a small island and the tours would eventually perhaps always look the same. The well-known saying 'the grass is always greener on the other side' seems to apply in this case. Nevertheless, it was a really nice thought.

With these thoughts in mind, we rolled on towards Lakolk Strand. At the campground, we were a bit lost at first and couldn't find our site for the night. The grass overgrown stones with numbers on them were hard to see, and we had trouble finding our way around. Fortunately, other campers were able to help us, and we eventually found our spot. It was our first time using our tent, and we had to figure out exactly how to set it up. It's a breeze to set up, but when it's as windy as it was at that moment, it can take a little longer. It was at that moment that we must have been happy about the existence of SUVs because our neighbor offered to put his in front of our tent as a windbreak. That really helped a lot to have such a tank, as a windbreaker.

When the tent was finally pitched, we made our way to the beach. The sun was still shining, and it was windy, but the temperatures were still pleasant. Jana was completely impressed by the size of the beach when she saw it. It is 12 km long and 1-3 km wide, and the fact that cars are allowed to ride on it was something entirely new for her. We sheltered in the middle of the beach behind a mini dune and called my mother to tell her about our adventure. After the phone call, we made our way to the ocean. The sand crunched under our wheels and the wind whipped at our faces. When we reached the sea, the sky was still colored in different shades of red and the sunset was breathtakingly beautiful. Unfortunately, it got cold pretty quickly, and we had to make our way back. Nevertheless, it was an unforgettable evening, and we were already looking forward to the next day of our trip.

Back at the campsite, we made a quick meal with our small stove and then crawled into our sleeping bags. Of course, not without first securing the wheels double and triple. We have a great bike insurance, but you never know. ...

The first night in the tent together was exciting. We were both a bit nervous if everything would work out and if we would have enough space. But after a few minutes we had already gotten used to the confinement and fell into a deep sleep.

The next morning, I was awake before Jana and woke her carefully. We had decided to explore the island a little again at sunrise, without our luggage on the bike. Unfortunately, the night had not been very restful. Sleeping in a sleeping bag is still a bit unfamiliar, and sometimes the noises made when someone turns around can seem quite loud. Regardless, we proceeded with our plan and discovered a lake in the middle of a small wooded area that looked beautiful in the morning light. I had been to Rømø a few times before, but the lake was also new to me. After we ate breakfast and took down the tent and packed everything, we headed out. The wind had died down a bit overnight, but now it picked up again.

During the morning ride, we had noticed that Jana's gears were suddenly working again. This made things a little better looking into today, as she hoped not to have to fight the wind again with only one gear. Especially not with the Rømø dam ahead. The dam connects the island with the Danish mainland, is just about 10 km long, and it only goes straight through the Wadden Sea.

Well, we had rejoiced a little too early, hardly had we attached our bags to the bikes again, the gears suddenly stopped working again. We were baffled and discreetly annoyed. But we did not want to take the ferry to Sylt again, but ride back over the Danish mainland. So we had no other choice but to keep on pushing. The ride on the causeway was a special experience, although it is questionable whether it was stunning. There are only two or three parking bays along the entire route where you can safely stop. You get passed by cars and RVs that don't pass too close, but then the wind slams in all the harder when it's been briefly blocked by a camper or a truck. It was a little scary, but we had no choice but to bravely hang on. I rode incessantly in front of Jana to at least give her some slipstream. I think my pulse got pretty racing there, we in terms of speed rather less.

After we had successfully passed the Rømø dam, left the main road and reached the first gravel road on the dike, we took a short break sheltering from the wind to celebrate our wedding anniversary with a huge protein cookie. Because as we all know, no munch, no fight! As we continued to ride along the beautiful gravel path along the dike, which is part of the North Sea Coastal Bike Path, we spotted cute baby sheep everywhere, watching us curiously. One of the sheep almost stumbled in front of our wheels. Fortunately, we were traveling slowly anyway to avoid the lambs, and we were able to brake in time. The strong tailwind made riding much easier, and we were on our way much faster than expected. As soon as we reached the German border, however, we immediately felt the stress of the motorists again. We wondered why the drivers in Denmark are so relaxed and prudent, while just a few kilometers away, suddenly everyone is driving like hell.

We stopped at a farm store with a self-service machine and Jana got us two bottles of Fritz-Cola to shorten the waiting time for the train to Hamburg. Since we arrived earlier than expected in Klanxbüll, we just saw the previous train leaving. So, we had to wait an hour, but at least we had the Fritz-Cola to pass the time.

Our first Overnighter was really a special experience, and we have many fond memories of it. We realized that we really enjoyed cycling in Denmark and will surely plan another tour soon. See you soon, Rømø!

Our vlog for this tour:


The early bird and his worm or the northern heath in the mist

It was that time again - for our little bike trip through the nature reserve Lüneburger Heide we set our alarm clock at 4:30 am. Our plan: take the first train to Buchholz and then off into the heath. The flat and wide landscape almost lends itself to small excursions from everyday life. In Lower Saxony, this is the largest car-free area and therefore the perfect place to downshift. Many hotels and vacation accommodations around the Heide are designed for cyclists, because the best way to explore this beautiful piece of earth is by bike or on foot. Since we live not too far away, a day trip by train or completely by bike almost offers itself.

So after the alarm clock rang, it meant for us, off to our stomachs with our morning drinks and a fortifying oatmeal breakfast, put on the laid out clothes and off we went.

We had already prepared the bikes the evening before with foresight. We were exhausted because, besides the fact that it was incredibly early and on that night, the time had been changed, and on top of it, our cat was very restless. We didn't have any coffee, as we wanted to brew some ourselves later on the way.

Outside our front door, it was pretty chilly and a bit foggy. The head unit showed 2 degrees, but it felt less. We, therefore, quickly rode our bikes through the sleepy city to the train station, only to learn on the spot that our train was delayed. So we opted for an alternative connection and finally arrived in Buchholz at sunrise.

Just a few meters from the station, we had then discovered one of our highlights of the day. The small town pond, in the middle of which stood a tree and dense fog that surrounded all this. An insanely beautiful sight and briefly the cold and the early time were forgotten.

Having taken a few photos and a little pee break, we continued towards the Lüneburg Heath. There was silence and fog even on the larger roads we rode along.

There were hardly any cars on the road, so we caught a glimpse of a deer standing not far from us between deforested trees, or ones knocked down by the storm. Just long enough to take a photograph of it and admire it for a moment.

Finally we reached the heath landscape and the Büsenbach valley. The heath landscape shows its full beauty and splendor only in late summer, when everything is in bloom, but there was nothing to see of it on this day anyway. The dense fog hung low over the hills of the heath. It was beautiful. And incredibly quiet.

Only when we stopped, and our tires made no noise on that gravel surface. In the distance, we could hear a few birds but nothing else. In addition to the fog, silence surrounded us like we had not experienced in a long time.

Continuing along our planned route, we reached the Pferdekopf (horse's head). Pferdekopf is not a horse's head but a small hill in the Büsenbach valley, which offers an excellent area overview.

We had only ridden just under 12 kilometers, but with a chilly 5 degrees and it still being early, it was a perfect time to stop for coffee on the hill.

Except for a runner and a few dogs barking (and people screaming for the dogs) in the distance, there was no one around.

With the warming jacket put on or over her legs, Jana gave our camping stove a try for the first time, shivering from the cold. We had already mixed the coffee and milk powder, and slowly the water was heating up. Due to the wind, unfortunately, it took a while. Nevertheless, finally, we had some coffee and cookies. The only thing missing was something to stir up the clumpy coffee powder. We'll keep that in mind for next time.

Because we didn't want to freeze, we then quickly moved on to the adjacent Brunsberg nature reserve. After all, we didn't just want to drink coffee, we also wanted to do a little cycling. To warm up our limbs again, that was also a good idea.

On our way through the heath, past Brunsberg and Höllenberg, and down to Höllenschlucht, we drove through small patches of forest and had to dodge several (or rather: a great many) trees knocked down by the last big storm. The larger trails were cleared, we were told by an elderly couple we met in the forest. Other, smaller paths, however, resembled a tree graveyard. A sad and awe-inspiring sight: the force of nature and the number of fallen trees.

The early bird and his worm: in the middle of the path sat a small redwing with worm in its beak. The little one sat stubbornly on the path and after Björn had passed it very closely, we stopped to look at (and of course photograph) the small, seemingly fearless bird. After the little one had initially hopped in our direction to pose like a model in front of the camera, it finally hopped to the side of the path.

The fog persisted. The visibility was much better in the woods, but on the more open stretches and heathland, there was still fog even at noon. The sky was covered with clouds, and there was not much to see of the forecasted sun.

Finally, the sun made an appearance on the way through the Seevetal, which we traversed on bike paths and a quiet road. Temperatures increased quickly, so we had to take a short break to take off our warm clothes. Despite some wind, we rolled on perfect bike paths to our day's destination. The train station Maschen.

The train station in Maschen was small and colorful. Painted in all colors and by the stairs hung many colorful pictures. Otherwise, there were two tracks and the trains that stopped here ran about every hour. In two directions. However, the long distance traffic went by loud, noisy and fast. We had to wait half an hour for our train, so we sat down on the track and enjoyed the sun, which had warmed up our frozen bodies by now. And then no train came, but the announcement that it was cancelled. We didn't feel like riding our bikes all the way home, although that would have been quite possible. That's why we waited another hour at the railroad track for our train. The warmth of the sun and the few other people waiting made the time quite pleasant. Only to eat we had unfortunately nothing more.

We reflected on our day. For far too long we had not made such a beautiful tour. Despite the cold in the morning, we were blissful. We had needed that again. It was almost like a vacation.

Two very different castles

One thing to be said up front, this isn't an incredibly long or challenging route. It's a relaxed 40 kilometers that invite you to linger and marvel at the highlights. For us, discovering new places or rediscovering places we already know is always part of the experience.

To ensure that the route is accessible to many people, it starts at the small train station in Werne. It then leads along the Werner Stadtwald, past the school center, and along the hospital out of the town.

Already after a few, really very few kilometers you pass the first highlight. (Not for us personally, because we don't drink alcohol). For you could be the Grain distillery Ehringhausen however, be interesting. Here you can browse the selection of liqueurs, brandies and gins in the farm store, or book a tour of the distillery including tasting in advance.

You are continuing amidst fields, meadows, and woods. Along the edges of Südkirchen and through a small nature reserve called Bakenbusch. After about 13 kilometers, you will reach the southern entrance of the Nordkirchen castle park. Through beautiful forest paths, you proceed to Schloss Nordkirchen. While you can already see the castle, you will pass the Oranienburg before the steps at the moat in front of the castle invite you to pause and daydream.

The next kilometers will take you through the typical Münsterland area: fields, meadows, and forests. After a total of just under 30 kilometers, you'll reach Schloss Westerwinkel. It's not as massive as Schloss Nordkirchen but has a charm all of its own. For us, it's much more appealing than Schloss Nordkirchen. We prefer it to be low-key. To leave Schloss Westerwinkel behind you, you keep riding across the golf course, on paths, of course.

After another kilometer, you pass the Horne spring. A bench invites you to take a break, but you've just had one. So you continue riding down the forest highway. Passing a stamping station of the Way of St. James, the last 10 kilometers lead you back to the train station in Werne.


Distillery Ehringhausen

A local Korn distillery that is passionate about creating new flavors for brandies and liqueurs: also, since summer 2016, the company has added a gin made from high-quality botanicals.

The origins of the Ehringhausen distillery date back to 1962. It is located on the Ehringhausen farm, whose history dates back to 1237.

Distillery Ehringhausen


Nordkirchen Castle

Schloss Nordkirchen is one of the most famous and popular destinations in the Münsterland region and is an impressive example of great architecture. The "Westphalian Versailles" is situated in the middle of an enormous park. It is an outstanding example of an entirely preserved baroque complex.

The 18th-century castle with its spacious park of around 170 hectares has been declared worthy of protection by UNESCO as a "total work of art of international standing".

Westerwinkel Castle

Schloss Westerwinkel is a baroque moated castle.

The peculiarity of this castle is not based on an eventful past or on a fascinating architectural history. Rather, it differs from all other castles rather by its own character. It is reserved, like the inhabitants of this area; it hides in the high forests and in the meadows and fields enclosed with hedges; it seems to want to remain rather alone, hidden from any stranger, content with itself and its small world.

The heathlands of the Nordheide

We were highly motivated when we planned our tour towards Lüneburg Heath for April 2, and all of a sudden, we had 130 km to cover. Lots of loose ground, but also some tarmac lay ahead of us. We were well aware that we would certainly be hungry on this tour. The only open stores (supermarkets) would be utterly overcrowded because of the Easter holidays. So, I prepared little pizza rolls to take with us the day before. Nothing worse than being hungry on the road. I just like to be prepared.

So we started our day on Saturday morning after breakfast at about 2° Celsius around 8:30.

We drove through the Hafencity - pretty relaxed this morning, because a large part of the streets was closed off and security guards were standing around everywhere. Supposedly a film shoot was taking place here, which we didn't see anything about, but many people took the chance to shoot here for YouTube or for Tik Tok - who knows.

Then we passed the futuristic subway station "Elbbrücken". This looks architecturally really imposing. From there we went over the old Elbbrücken bridges, which contrast nicely with the new subway station and are a beautiful sight every time, both the bridges themselves and the view across the river to the Landungsbrücken.

We rode through Wilhelmsburg along small empty streets and paths, past allotment gardens (of which there are quite a few here) and beautiful old houses. The remains of an Easter fire were still in the air, and we also passed one. The wood was still quite smoky.

To cross the Süderelbe, we had to pass over a highway bridge. The water below us glistened in the sunlight, and we briefly watched the kayaks cruising in the water below us. At the end of the bridge, stairs led into the greenery and along a beautiful path. Convinced I had to ride along there, I carried my bike down, and we took a few photos, only to realize that this was not the right path, and I had to carry my bike back up. Going up a flight of stairs on a bike is always a lot of fun. Not.

Now it was finally time for a break! Of course, I (we) were hungry, but I also desperately needed a place to take a pee break. Luckily we found a perfect spot for both, on a small path, with a pinwheel and no people in sight. We were looking forward to the delicious pizza rolls, but were disappointed to find that they were a bit dry. But still better than having empty stomachs. Relieved and slightly satiated, we continued on our way.

Gradually, more and more nature emerged around us: the Seevetal. The trail led us along the Seeve. The Seeve arises between Handeloh and Undeloh and joins the Elbe after winding 40 km through the Geest. There were several meadows full of horses, and we passed through a small forest with a beautiful wooden bridge, and just behind it, an old stone bridge was waiting for us, the viaduct railroad bridge over the Seeve near Jesteburg.

In the direction of Undeloh, we rode through a beautiful forest area. We found greetings from Udo (whoever Udo was) and an artistically designed rest area. The light and the forest had a magic all their own.

When we finally reached Undeloh, the heath landscape opened up. Although not much was blooming at this time of year, the view over the heath is always beautiful. We wanted to take a break and had targeted a spot for it that was listed as a highlight on Komoot, a bench overlooking the heath. But thanks to the beautiful sunny day, the benches were all occupied by hikers or other cyclists. So no rest for us for the time being. Our food cravings had to wait a bit. And so we continued to follow the path through the heath, which became a small single trail with some roots. A beautiful ride.

Finally we found an empty bench for us and I could finally eat something. A little exhausted from the few meters of altitude that we are just not used to. But that's just the way it is when you live in such a flat region. Every bit of hill becomes a challenge.

Continuing on, we rode over cobblestones and sandy paths. Needed to make good use of our strength; we were at just under 70km and basically already on the way home again, very close to the Seeve on a single trail and through the beautiful Büsenbachtal.

Exhausted and wanting to just go home, we rode through the Brunsberg nature reserve and then through forests near Buchholz and Rosengarten.

Unfortunately, there are hardly any pictures of the rest of the route here. As Björn mentioned (again and again), every single part of his body hurt, and every little hill we had to climb sapped our energy, and I was already dreaming of a delicious meal on the couch at home. We drove on to get home quickly.

At this point, at the latest, we were more complaining than enjoying the surroundings and the beautiful nature. But sometimes, that's just the way it is. We approached the route very ambitiously, knowing full well that we hadn't ridden so many kilometers at a stretch in a long time. We probably also directly felt almost 800 meters of altitude. We are real flatland people.

Of burning white moors and green forests

After a trip to the west of Hamburg on Saturday, we found ourselves on the sofa in the evening talking about where to go on Sunday. As so often, it ended with "I don't know, what do you think?" So we decided on a direction, this time it was north.

So we opened Komoot and started clicking and building our route. From a conversation with a friend, I remembered he really liked Wittmoor and Tangstedter Forst, and since neither of us had been there yet, that was definitely going to be part of our route. We added a few other places and ended up with about 70 km.

On Sunday, the next day, we got up around 8, had breakfast, and left the house.

The first part of our route took us along the Alsterwanderweg, first in the city, then slowly out of the town. Since it was already around 9:30/10, the path was already pretty crowded with people. Runners, people walking their dogs, you name it. It was still lovely but could have been more fun with fewer people (if only we had gotten up earlier).

The first place we stopped for a short break to grab a bite to eat was Hummelsee, located in the Hummelsbütteler Moor. We had been there a few times before, and this time we decided to just look at the Müllberg (English: garbage mountain) (yes, that's what it's called) and not go up it, like another time before.

After this short stop, we rode to Wittmoor, a wonderful place that I definitely want to visit again to take more photos. I didn't take too many this time as it was also quite crowded, but it should be just fantastic on a Saturday and at an earlier time of day. What a beautiful place.

Next up on the menu: Tangstedter Forst.

And what a beautiful place. A vast forest area. Even though there were also many people, it didn't feel that way because there are many options when it comes to trails. Definitely a place we HAVE to return to.

We had another quick snack stop at Wilstedt Lake or Costa Kiesa, as the locals call it. Usually, the lake is a pretty crowded swimming spot, but it's closed because of the Corona pandemic. So besides us, there was only one family and an elderly lady who actually went swimming. I got a lot of respect for her because the water must have been still pretty cold.

Our ride continued through the Henstedter Moor, but we had to pass 5-6 vehicles of the local fire department before we could enter the moor. We wondered why they were there, but there was nothing obvious. When the firemen were about to leave, we rode on.

Just a few minutes later you could smell smoke and the smell of something burning. Just a few hundred meters away we could see it, and it was sad. Parts of the bog were completely burned. The trees still looked fine for the most part, but most of the ground was black. It was a strange experience. On the one hand it was sad, but on the other hand it looked visually interesting, so I took the opportunity to take a few pictures while talking about how it might have happened.

As I write this, I have just learned that two teenagers were trying to prepare food with a camping gas stove, it tipped over and started the fire. The press says: "The teens, however, prevented worse by immediately calling the fire department themselves and, when police and firefighters arrived, ruefully reported their mishap." So, at least there's that. But in any case, this is a reminder to all of us who enjoy the outdoors to treat it with respect and to be careful at all times when dealing with it.

We continued, followed the railroad tracks on nice gravel for a while, crossed another forest, and passed another small moor area before heading back into town on the Kollauwanderweg, turning into Niendorfer Gehege, and heading home. What a great ride.

Among nuclear power plants and tree-covered ruins

It was a sunny Sunday morning and we had decided to take our bikes out. But we didn't know exactly where to go yet. I had two options in mind: two routes in the Hamburg area from the Orbit360 series. One of them led to a place we had visited many times before - the Holmer Sandbergen. So we decided to take the other route, which our friends Johanna and Timo had scouted and of which I had seen interesting photos. However, we did not want to drive 190 km, so we re-planned the route and tinkered with a variant that was just under 100 km long.

After we ate breakfast (at least I did, Jana didn't feel like eating much this morning), we got ready to go. But of course, as always, there were any little delays - I had to look for my missing socks first. You know how it is: you're looking in the drawer for the right pair of socks, but they've disappeared off the face of the earth. You keep searching and suddenly they show up right in front of you. How can you be so blind? But no matter, now we downloaded the route to our Wahoo and off we went!

Since we wanted to leave the city on the eastern side, we had to cross it first, but fortunately this is not quite as annoying on a Sunday as on other days. Via the Oberhafen Connection we went out via Moorfleet and the Allermöher Wiesen in the direction of ...

Wait, wait, first there was this tree lying across the path, but somehow lying is the wrong expression, it was hanging over the path, not low enough to just climb over, not high enough to just walk under. What seemed comparatively easy for Jana was the first reason for me to grumble about what this was all about. I slid the bike underneath, took the camera off my back, and then somehow squatted and crawled through. That must have looked pretty stupid to outsiders. Eventually, I managed to squeeze under the tree and get back on my feet. Jana laughed at me and asked if I was okay. I nodded, and we continued on our way, full of anticipation for all the adventures that lay ahead of us.

During a break at the lake in Neuallermöhe, we enjoyed the view. We had a few snacks with us, which we shared. The fresh air and exercise had made Jana hungry after all, so the snacks tasted especially good.

We continued on our way through Neuallermöhe, which, by the way, was Hamburg's youngest district until construction began on HafenCity. It was built with a focus on special housing quality for young families of the ecologically oriented middle class. Through this planned construction, the district looked a bit boring to us, but also somehow quite nice due to the houses with access to the water and canoes in the garden. Unfortunately, I have not taken a photo, but I think that Neuallermöhe can be quite nice.

We were lost in thought for a moment and didn't realize until it was too late that we had missed the turnoff. So, we turned around and then crossed under the highway on a narrow, dark footbridge. And then we continued on gravel.

Shortly after, we reached the gorgeous forest around the Dalbek Gorge. Where there is forest, there are trees, and where there are trees, there ...? Correct, there are trees on the paths. And not too scarce. In addition, a real mini creek.

The last climb we pushed the bikes up because it was pretty nasty. First a nice descent on gravel, then a 90° bend, and suddenly, it goes uphill. Inconveniently, exactly at this moment people were standing in the middle of the corner, so we had to brake to 0. Jana was already struggling with her allergies and breathing that day, so we took a short break after the climb. She had her vegan jerky all to herself. For some reason, I just don't like that stuff.

This was followed by a charming forest section with climbs and descents. Wonderful. I could have stopped and taken photos at pretty much every corner, but we wanted to keep going.

"...And so it ended with him offering me, as you would expect, on the face."

In retrospect, I would have liked to spare myself the following, but I was probably too impulsive on that day. Somewhere in Geesthacht, a muscular guy lectured me from his car that there was a bike path. Although I confirmed that I was aware of this, on his request to then use it, I responded out of reflex with a "shut the fuck up" and so it ended with him offering me, as you would expect, a punch in the face. Fortunately for me, he then probably had another thought and rode off. But up to the point where we parted ways, at the next intersection, I wasn't sure he wouldn't consider it again. Well, I was lucky and maybe next time I will just be quiet or find a more diplomatic answer....

We then took a kilometer-long private road to the following stop location: the Krümmel nuclear power plant.

The Krümmel nuclear power plant in Geesthacht was once the second largest nuclear power plant of its kind in the world and a source of enormous energy. But it has been shut down since 2011, after public protests led to it being shut down. As we approached the power plant, I felt goosebumps. Even though it was shut down, I could feel the energy that once flowed through the facility. It was a strange feeling to be in a place that had once been full of power and life, but now lay silent and abandoned.

After a break, we continued our way through the forest, towards the Besenhorster Sandberge. But the peace didn't last long, because we, or rather I, got into another conflict - this time with a female SUV driver who was convinced that the road belonged to her. It was not my day as far as encounters with people in cars were concerned.

I was already very excited about the Besenhorster Sandberge and the ruins of the former dynamite factory, which I had seen in photos. I really wanted to take my own photos as well. Unfortunately, however, it was relatively crowded there, and other photographers were already at work with models. There was neither enough quiet nor enough space for more photos. But, we can always go there again.

The Besenhorst Sandbergs are truly a fascinating place where you can experience the power of nature up close. The ruins of the former dynamite factory are a fascinating example of how nature reclaims its terrain. During World War II, the roofs of the buildings were greened to protect them from attack. But now, decades later, you can even find trees and plants on these roofs. It is remarkable to see how quickly nature can reclaim and take control again.

It is also fascinating to observe the different stages of weathering that the buildings have undergone. Some are almost completely overgrown and almost unrecognizable, while others still bear the traces of their former function. It is a place full of history and change, showing how nature always takes over

After the somewhat more extended break in the Sandberge, we headed back towards Hamburg. As beautiful and relaxing as the old Marschbahndamm is, as you simply ride through greenery for many kilometers without cars, it can also be boring because you only go straight ahead for what feels like eternities. Perhaps this monotony has also led to the fact that I complained more about my tired legs and back pain. The camera on the back is just not always so optimal. Let's see, we will test alternatives.

There is not much more to tell about the way back, and we did not take any more photos.

Festive 500 / 2020 - A field report

DAY 1 - 0 from 500 km

When we woke up in the morning, the rain was pelting our windows. We decided to stay a little longer in the warm bed and strengthen ourselves with a delicious superfood bowl. But soon we had to get on the road because 64 km were on the plan for today.

We made our way through small forest areas and over empty paths full of puddles and deep mud. It was a real adventure to ride through the mud and sometimes even have to push our bikes. Some of us had more fun with it than others, but at last we were all pretty mud encrusted.

But the weather held all day, and so we made our way back home in the dark. Our feet were wet and cold, but we had still had a lot of fun. However, when we parked our bikes in front of the front door, we realized that there were only 53 km on the speedometer, not 64 km. WTF?!? So, we made an extra round without further ado and made sure that we had 60 km on the Wahoo in the end.

After cleaning the gross dirt off our bikes (thanks, brave little low-pressure cleaner!), we could finally head into the warm weather. With us, we brought a lot of mud into our apartment, but it was worth it. Now we're full, warmed up, and ready to relax on the couch. We are already looking forward to day 2 of our challenge.

DAY 2 - 60 from 500 km

It was to be a day full of adventure and challenges as we set off early in the morning to enjoy the bright sunshine promised by the weather forecast. According to Komoot, a "tough gravel tour" awaited us in the Sachsenwald forest, where good physical condition was required and we would even be forced to push our bikes in some places. Despite the cold and tiredness, we did not want to miss the opportunity to take on this challenge.

But we were well-prepared and with the Cannondale Topstone Lefty, we had a bike that helped us on the muddy and rooty trails with its suspension and 47 mm tires. Still, it was not an easy day. We had to make our way through narrow, muddy passages where the risk of falling into muddy puddles was high. The forest was on full display, the trees glistened in the sunlight and the air was clear and fresh.

After 5 hours of riding we had covered 75 km, had been on the road for over 7 hours and had frozen feet and empty stomachs. It was a long and tiring day, but we were rewarded with the beautiful sunset that awaited us on the way back home in the Boberger Dunes. Now we are looking forward to a movie and the couch while we focus on what the next day will bring. We don't know yet what tomorrow will bring, but one thing is for sure: we will go on and face the next challenges.

DAY 3 - 135 from 500 km

Yesterday our route took us through strenuous terrain, and we were glad to have a flat route today that would take us along the Elbe River. Unfortunately, we didn't really feel fit after yesterday and were tired, had sore muscles and Björn's right knee hurt.

The landscape along the sheep dike offered us a beautiful view during the ride, but the monotony of the northern German landscape in winter also made itself felt. At least it really didn't rain, and the wind initially only came from the side. On the way back, however, we had to face the nasty headwind that almost blew us off the road and the cold that slowly crept through our clothes didn't make things any better.

We couldn't wait to finally get back home and had enough of the wind, cold and hurting knees. Nevertheless, we managed to cover just under 72 kilometers, which is 40% of the distance of the Challenge. Now we will relax our tired muscles and aching knees and take a rest day tomorrow. This means that we will have to cover more kilometers on the other days, but for now, we have to listen to our bodies and give them the time to recover.

DAY 4 - 202 from 500 km

After the exhausting round yesterday, I feel completely exhausted and tired. It feels like I used every single muscle in my body and now I feel parts of me that I haven't felt in a long time. Today's rest day is obviously much needed to recharge and replenish my energy reserves. But I wonder how it is possible to feel so wimpy after a round of cycling? What does my body want from me? And this aching knee ... It seems that I have reached my limits and urgently need a break to feel fit and energetic again.

Jana also feels a little tired and has slightly sore muscles, but compared to me, she seems to be in top shape. She seems completely unfazed and I envy her a bit for her energy and stamina, but I know that each of us is different, and we all have our limits. I hope that tomorrow I will have enough energy again to go on the bike together and continue the challenge.

DAY 5 - 202 from 500 km

Today was day 5 of the #festive500, and we were excited to see how it would go. After our rest day yesterday, our muscles felt rested and ready to take on the challenge. We decided to ride the same route as the day before, as we were faster there than on gravel roads, except for the headwind. It may not have been the most exciting option, but it was still a wise choice.

But after the first ten kilometers, we had to interrupt our plan when Björn's rear wheel suddenly lost air. We refilled it and continued our ride, but unfortunately, it lost pressure again soon after. We knew we had to take a closer look, and eventually discovered two holes in Björn's tire. Since we were riding tubeless, we hoped the holes would close themselves, but disappointingly, they did not. A look inside the tire revealed it: the sealant had dried up completely. So, we had to switch to an inner tube, which cost us a lot of time, but at least we could continue without further problems afterwards. Although Björn's knee started to hurt sporadically, it wasn't as bad as on the last ride. Despite the minor setbacks, we were determined to finish the #festive500 successfully.

DAY 6 - 281 from 500 km

Lefty, I'm sorry, but disappointingly I can't ride with you today. My knee is giving me problems again, and I also pinched a nerve yesterday, which is causing my back to hurt. So, I guess I will just have to stay on the couch and rest today.

Jana did a solid 40 km today on Zwift and I mentally supported her being the good husband I am and kept refilling her water bottles. It's a shame I can't ride today, but I need to listen to my body and rest. I hope that tomorrow I will be able to go out on the bike again and continue the Festive 500.

DAY 7 - 321 from 500 km

It's day 7 of the #festive500 Challenge, and I'm once again lying on the sofa, my leg elevated. Unfortunately, my aching knee still hasn't improved, which means I have to end the challenge for me.

The wonderful woman by my side, wants to push through. She has already completed 387 of 500 km and plans to ride the remaining kilometers in two stages on Zwift tomorrow. I am impressed by her stamina and her will to finish the Challenge. I wouldn't last more than 2 hours at a time on the roller trainer.

I'm keeping my fingers crossed for her and hoping she'll reach her goal, even if I'm no longer able to continue myself. But hey, at least I can watch her pedal away from my comfy sofa and encourage her with. "You can do it! Another 113 km, that's nothing! Haha, just a walk in the park for you."

DAY 8 - 387 from 500 km

It's the last day of the #festive500 Challenge and the excitement is building. Happy new year! Unfortunately, Björn could not continue, and his challenge ended after 280 km due to his hurting knee. But you have to listen to your body. That means I still have 120 km to go.

"You can do it! Another 113 km, that's nothing!

Indoors, I've never ridden more than 50 km at a stretch before, but even though you're not exposed to the elements, riding outdoors is more exciting and varied. Full of motivation, I rode the first 61 km, ate a piece of cake and then started the second round. After 4 1/2 hours of riding, I was finally done and had managed to cover 511 km.

We're both proud of ourselves because we've never done so many miles in one go, and I only really started cycling this summer. Let's see if we'll try again next year, but in any case we're looking forward to having a 2021 full of time on the bike.

First time on an e-bike: Specialized Turbo Creo SL Evo

I remember one day Jana told her mother on the phone that I now had a new bike and her mother asked, "An e-bike?" At that moment, I looked at Jana indignantly, "Excuse me? Is she trying to insult me? Tz!" After all, I've only been riding my fixed gear bikes for 8 or even more years. Me ...? An e-bike? Never!

Friday night, once Jana's workday at the agency was over, we picked up the bikes at Concept Cycles Hamburg. The two Specialized Turbo Creo SL Comp Carbon EVOs were already waiting for us, fully charged and ready for the sunrise ride on Saturday morning.

On Friday evening, after Jana's workday at the agency was over, we picked up the bikes at Concept Cycles Hamburg. The two Specialized Turbo Creo SL Comp Carbon EVOs were already waiting for us, fully loaded and ready to go at sunrise on Saturday morning. Specialized Turbo Creo SL Comp Carbon EVOs were already waiting for us, fully loaded and ready to go at sunrise on Saturday morning.

But before we tell you about the ride and our impressions of the bike, let's share a few details about the bike itself....

The Turbo Creo SL Comp Carbon EVO is based on the same frameset as the Turbo Creo SL Comp Carbon e-road bike and is available in two different finishes: Satin Sage Green/Black and Gloss Navy/White Mountains. Our favorite is definitely the green bike, and luckily we had this one for testing.

At the heart of the Turbo Creo SL Comp Carbon EVO is the SL 1.1-E motor with maximum assistance of 240W, powered by the 320Wh battery in the down tube. Specialized specifies the full range at 120km, but it can be extended by another 60km with an optional range extender.

The Comp Carbon version of the bike is equipped with a 1×11 Shimano GRX 810 group and brakes; I already know this group from my Canyon Grail CF SL and like it very much. Specialized installed Praxis cranks on the bike.

Integrated into the head tube is the Future Shock 2.0 system, which is adjustable in the intensity of its damping via a knob on the stem and offers 20 mm of travel.

Specialized has also equipped the Turbo Creo SL EVO with an X-Fusion Manic dropper post with 50 mm travel.

Standard equipment includes 700 x 38 C Pathfinder Pro tires on DT Swiss R470 Boost wheels. The front axle is 110 mm wide and the rear axle 148 mm wide. The frame allows maximum tire widths of 700 x 42C or 650b x 50.

The Specialized Turbo Creo SL EVO IN THE WILD

The alarm clock rang at 6 a.m. Saturday morning, after coffee and a banana with peanut butter and pretzel sticks, we left home. Recently we had discovered Himmelmoor on another ride and wanted to return there.

Since we absolutely wanted to be there in time for sunrise (which we still have not managed, because sometimes we just dawdle), we have not changed the pedals as planned. (Never say: "Oh, it will be fine!!!).

So there we were, on the probably most simple flat pedals that Specialized has to offer, on the road. Perfect dream if you are on the road with clipless shoes. Well, for the next time we know that we have to finish it in the evening.

One thing we noticed right away on Friday evening: The Specialized Turbo Creo SL EVO is light for an e-bike. We could not find exact data on the weight, but carrying the bike to the 4th floor was no problem. That was our impression again on Saturday morning.

The assistance wasn't as spectacular on the road, but off the pavement, I think it was more noticeable, as you usually need a lot more power from your legs to match the speed on gravel. I can't say that it wasn't fun to zip around this way.

Arrived in the moor, we were rewarded with beautiful light and sunshine, first a quick snack, a few photos, and then move on. At this point, we already noticed that the bike attracts attention. And rightly so. It is a beautiful bike, and the most remarkable thing about it is that it does not scream e-bike at first glance. Until you notice or hear the engine. It is noticeable but not annoying. Since it was our first time on an e-bike, we can't compare it to other motors out there.

Jana, who rides a Specialized Diverge Base Carbon with Future Shock 1.5, was very impressed with the adjustability of the Future Shock 2.0 while riding; the suspension was noticeable on cobblestones and bumps and helped make the ride more enjoyable.

I was very impressed with the smooth and direct shifting. Maybe I should readjust mine on my Grail.

Of course, we were not spared a flat tire, but the tube replacement went quickly, thanks to the thru-axles. It is hard to judge whether this is a direct argument against the tires or whether Jana was simply unlucky. She has not yet had a puncture on her Diverge, which is also equipped with Pathfinder tires.

Now let's move on to the...


We are not quite sure what the purpose of the Specialized Turbo Creo SL EVO could be for us. For a moment, I thought that I could use the bike for bikepacking tours, but it lacks mounting points because, except for two bottle cages and mudguards, nothing can be mounted. I know this from my Canyon Grail CF SL, but the dropper post also takes away the possibility of a saddlebag. In addition, the range of 120km, so if I want to ride longer distances, I have to attach the extender and thus lose one of the two places for water bottles.

Jana already mentioned during the ride that the bike is fun for her, but it can never replace the feeling she gets when she rides a bike on her power. At least not while she is still fit enough to do so.

Welcome to Ride Punk Ride

Moin and welcome to www.ridepunkride.com!

We are Jana & Björn, two enthusiastic cyclists, who like to share everything cycling in our lives. So far, we've only done that on our Instagram profile, but we want more. We really like Instagram and spend a lot of time there, but there are just some things we don't like about the platform.

For example, Instagram is very restrictive when it comes to image formats. We've had many discussions about how a picture looks much better in landscape format, but is displayed too small on Instagram to attract attention. Text length is also limited on Instagram and sometimes there are photos that just don't "work" on the platform.

With this website, we solve all these problems for ourselves because we can write in more detail about things that are otherwise overlooked on Instagram. We can share more photos and publish them in appropriate size and quality. Plus, it's fantastic to have something we can work on together. After all, we share a passion for cycling and also for photography and social media. So, why not try to make more of it?

Besides this website, we are making plans and thinking about ideas for the future. In this crazy year of 2020, we decided to take advantage of the time and start new projects. It's going to be exciting for sure.

Would you like to learn more about us? Then visit our "About us" page. There you can learn more about our history, our passion for cycling and us personally.

We are happy to have you here and hope you enjoy our posts!