Sunrises and winter fayres

The last few weeks have been very wet and not very  pleasant for cycling to work. But as reward there have been some spectacular sunrises.

From 2015

And in central Reading the “Winter Wonderland” has been assembled in Forbury Gardens.

From 2015
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Line up

This morning Jupiter, Mars, Venus and the moon all lined up nicely. Mercury was around as well, but it was too low on the horizon and I think I was also a bit late for it. The sky was already too bright to see it.

From 2015
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Lunar Eclipse

At the end of September there was a special lunar eclipse with a particularly red moon. It was visible in Berkshire during the very small hours of the morning. Fortunately, I did manage to wake up in time and was rewarded with a spectacular view.

From 2015
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Bungsberg

Last month I managed to ride to the Bungsberg again, the first time for a long time. It is Schleswig-Holstein‘s highest point with phenomenal 168m above sea level. On the way there I followed the B202 from Kiel which wasn’t too bad. But the cyclepaths along are quite bad in places due to roots from trees popping the tarmac. Also, cyclepaths designers are also under mistaken impression that cyclist enjoy bonus tight corners and extra hills. Near the Bungsberg the cyclepaths were even worse with big cracks and large potholes. I also made the mistake to follow a signpost indicating a cycle route to my destination which for the last kilometre turned into a steep and narrow footpath. But the weather was nice, sunny but not too warm,

From 2015
From 2015

and I had good view from the top. Unfortunately, I had not brought a lock along and therefore could not climb up the telecommunications tower. The ride home was more pleasant, though still riddled with bumpy mandatory cyclepaths through villages that have a 30km/h speed limit. I took a rural route to Preetz just to the North of Malente and Plön.
Still, a nice trip that was just above the 100km mark that I can recommend for a bike ride on a sunny day.

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Old Lübeck

Yesterday’s visit to Bad Schwartau finally gave me the opportunity to visit the location of the original settlement of Lübeck which was later abandoned.

From 2015

You can still see why the location must have been a good for a small settlement, a small hill overlooking the confluence of two rivers. However, there was little room for flood proof extension.

I also had a go at trying to take a picture of the forest in Bad Schwartau as panorama, good effort, but room for improvement.

From 2015
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Westerhever

On a recent visit to the west coast of Schleswig-Holstein I finally got the chance to a picture of Westerhever lighthouse.

From 2015

And yesterday there was a fine evening and sunset here in Berkshire.

From 2015
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Inside a Marathon Plus

Last weekend I changed the tyres on my main bicycle from Marathon Pluses to Marathon Winter tyres (just in time for Monday morning’s frost). I took the opportunity to cut up one of the Marathon+ tyres to take a look inside.

Pictures of a Marathon+ tyre, from 2014

The tyre tread is certainly impressive for a use of about 10,000km, unfortunately other bits of tyre didn’t age as well (it’s about 6 years old). The sidewalls did not look too happy in places and the reflective strip had come off on one side. But I’m certainly going to run the next set for a longer distance if possible, having seen how rubber and puncture protection is left. The tyres did, by the way, have not a single puncture in their lifetime.

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