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Day 12 .... Algermissen to Schöningen....... 86 km ...(total 653 km)

If you were going to script a magnificent days ride on a bike this would come in your top 5 copies. 

Wake up in a quintessential German farm house and eat a quintessential German breakfast. Wander outside to mount your bike and be greeted by a working farm in progress. Mount your bike and ride along tree lined roads that are ridiculously well tarmac’d with a slight cooling breeze over your left shoulder which more often than not turned into a tail wind. 

Pass through seemingly deserted but beautifully maintained German villages and have lunch in an historic town famous for its half wood houses. 

Post lunch continue as the morning did but mid afternoon find yourself climbing gently through a heavily forested region of park land on billiard table smooth roads before celebrating creating the climb with a cold beer in a remote cafe and only 15 km of gentle downhill to home to come. Yes a little rain falls but with it a sense of accomplishment and gratification for the wonders that the day has delivered you . 

Finish it all with dinner in a traditional German town inn, washed down with amongst other liquor a pear schnapps as the rain drums a regular beat on the 200 year old roof tiles. 

Our accommodation last night was a farm house of immense proportions. The rooms were spacious and basic but it did have a self serve drinks salon and honour bar. What’s there not to like ?

Part I of any German breakfast .....

Part II.....

Part III...

Look away Mom.........Part IV 

Leaving breakfast fuller than a state school we were met with the visions of a farm at work. A blacksmith files and shoes the horse as it stands with patience, day dreaming of the hay it’s about to receive and a hen pecks nonchantly at the ground in hope of a culinary discovery all the while the boss lady looks on..... 

With the European Parliament elections later this week we’ve passed countless candidate boards with traditional sounding German names like Juergen Knaff , Katarina     

Clump, Stefan Morgen, and then there is .......

Did I say the morning roads were flat , tree lined , and straight ? Oh and the road surface smoother than marble. 

We stopped for lunch in the historic town of Wolfenbuttel and what a visionary delight it was.

Spot the anomaly

History on your doorstep.

We lunched at an outdoor cafe and watched this young one do countless laps of the water feature. His was unbridled joy, enthusiasm, innocence and energy and bought a smile to all our faces. We kept on thinking it was only a matter of time before he encountered a lesson of life (ie:slip) but full credit to him he stayed upright. Life’s simple pleasures . 

Post lunch we encountered a climb into a natural park area but just prior to it were the last vestiges of the open farmland to pass by. 

Off the road and with a gentle climb the air was rich with fertility .

Most the fertility given over to the rich aroma of garlic. 

Conquering the summit (we climbed more meters in 10 km than I had climbed in over 400 km on the Mosel and Rhine rivers) we helped ourselves to the offerings of a cafe in the centre of the forest. 

Fuel and a map . Two key ingredients to asuccessful  ride. 

As we closed in on our final destination the furniture upstairs sounded as though it was been moved, some flashes of lighting emerged but neither did anything to dampen our spirits. Spotting a rare Pine Marten (go google that) an afternoon highlight too. 

A rare shot of the “Laeman” in action as he freewheeled into Schöningen and home for the night . 

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