After a fairly uneventful night (the ferry didn’t sink) we woke. I had a pretty restless nights sleep and can’t say I felt particularly refreshed but the excitement at what lay ahead of us seemed to override any feelings of tiredness. We plugged in all the electrical gear we wanted to have charged for the next day or so, as you can see us geeks take a lot of gadgets with us!
We then headed down to the café to have some breakfast. I had mug of coffee and a granola pot, followed by a second mug of coffee! The plan for the day was pretty simple, get used to riding on the “wrong side”, get fuel and ride to Vladimir’s house in Jyderup where we would camp over night to test setting up the tents and prepare for the main part of the journey.
When the ferry was about 15 minutes from the port we went down to get the bikes unstrapped and pack away any items we’d taken out to use whilst on the ferry. I was pleased the bike was still upright as I’d never taken a bike on a ferry before and wasn’t sure how well I’d strapped it down. It took a bit of messing about to get my stuff back in the panniers and top box, I really hadn’t organised my gear very well and whenever I opened the pannier on the kickstand side most of the items fell out. The ferry docked, the doors opened and we rode out on to Danish soil.
The weather outside was looking pretty amazing, forecast was for 28 degrees and they were pretty much spot on. Unfortunately hot weather although nice, isn’t ideal when you’re head to toe in black biker gear and wearing a helmet. We queued to get through passport control, Paul was clearly very pleased to see me, Roy had a big grin and I was trying to stop my ears from bleeding due to Paul’s VFR exhaust rumbling through my entire body.
After we cleared customs we hit our first Danish roads and the initial panic of riding on the other side of the road. To be honest it was fine, well until the first roundabout came up and that did feel a bit weird riding the opposite way around it. Our first stop was to find fuel as we’d all used pretty much all we had getting to Harwich. We rode for about 15 minutes and I was starting to worry as my fuel gauge was rapidly decreasing. After pulling off the main highway we found a small petrol station on Paul’s satnav and arrived with my bike showing 7 miles left in the tank!
The petrol station was a new experience, unmanned and card only. You stick in your card, enter your pin as usual but then you select the pump you want to use and what octane fuel in some cases. It actually works quite well but it’s a bit of a change to the UK. We headed off towards the Great Belt where we crossed the Great Belt fixed link bridge, the longest suspension bridge outside Asia, and the 3rd largest in the world. After a brief stop to get our bearings we headed for the bridge, and what a bridge it is! Running parallel to the road bridge is a train track and at the moment we crossed so did a huge freight train, it was pretty cool.
Right where we stopped we could also see a Naval base with a load of Navy Ships sat docked.
trip Skype meetings we had but I knew he was friendly with Paul and they had a “special” relationship! Vladimir’s wife and daughter were there and welcomed us to their home. We had a quick drink and chat before spending time sorting the bikes for the main part of the trip and getting our tents set up.
Thomas Lindberg , another IBM’er, was there with his nice restored Mini which he was proudly showing off.
Vladimir and his family kindly made us a BBQ dinner and we sat eating and chatting for a while. After the food had been eaten I went back to finish sorting out my bike whilst Paul caught up with Vladimir and the others. A short while later we retired to our tents. except Gregg who was staying in a real comfy bed in Vladimir’s house.