This week Mark Beaumont spoke to AICR about my Cycling4Cancer charity adventure. Mark rode around the world a few years back, and in the process smashed the Guiness World Record. I have read both his books ‘The Man Who Cycled The World‘ and ‘The Man Who Cycled The Americas‘, and he has been a great inspiration for my own two wheeled charity trip. His cycling adventures have also resulted in two fantastic documentaries, and if you haven’t come across him already please visit his website. Thanks Mark for your words of encouragement!
In a couple of weeks Jon Maiden will be hitchhiking from Yorkshire to the Arctic Circle. He is undertaking this challenging charity event to raise money for AICR, as well as race me to the Arctic!
Not much of a cyclist, Jon has spent the last few months thinking of ways in which he can raise money and awareness for The Association for International Cancer Research (AICR). His 2000 mile hitchhiking journey will take him through eight countries, and as much as I want to win our race I am hoping he does not encounter any dangerous characters along the way!
Jon has determined the logistics of our race, and I will no doubt be in hot persuit as I make my way north on the bike:
“We’ll each have 7 days. I’ll need to cover around 300 miles a day thanks only to the goodwill of strangers. Chris will start the race in Dombas south of Trondheim, and will have 400 miles to cover. His 60 miles per day will be extremely difficult given the rough, mountainous terrain and the weight he is carrying on his bike. Just like Chris, I’ll be carrying all I need and camping by the road each night.
As well as raising money for cancer research, and catching up with Chris, I’m hoping my trip will demonstrate that hitchhiking is an excellent way to travel the world. It’s free and environmentally friendly, but more so it’s about gaining a genuine insight into a country, embracing the unknown and maintaining a sense of adventure. This certainly promises to be a journey I’ll never forget.
This morning as I dashed through yet another Norwegian tunnel I hit 4000km on the odometer. With two thousand kilometres and multiple border crossing since my last blog, I thought it was about time I got myself typing! The past month has been characterised by challenging rides through varied terrain, as well as some fabulous city breaks in Hamburg, Aalborg, Gothenborg and Oslo. I’m now in Scandinavia making my way north to the Arctic Circle, and eagerly anticipating the mountains, fjords and glaciers of Norway in the coming weeks!
The riding through Germany was fairly monotonous as I used the main artery roads linking the villages to Hamburg. The cycle paths continued to be excellent throughout the country; but it proved to be quite a wet and windy ride. As Europe’s second largest port, the industry in Hamburg was immense (after an hour of riding into the city centre I hadn’t passed a single house, just signs of heavy industry and the transportation of international cargo). I arrived as the city was celebrating the birthday of its harbour, so watching the procession of ships on the water was a nice way to enjoy the moment. As I sat on the waterside I met Irja, who kindly took me to an Indian restaurant to enjoy a meal with her daughter Saija. The next four days were spent with Johannes, who took me on numerous rides around the city and showed me the notorious nightlife of Hamburg (during which I lost my phone).