June 14, 2018
Not a good start to the day. First I had an awful nights sleep, then we discovered the phone is still not working. We went to Aldi and they gave us another Sim Card, if this doesn’t connect then it is obviously the phone.
After saying our farewells to Renate we returned to the Rhine and followed the Rhine south.
I optimistically thought the signage would be good, but it didn’t turn out that way. There are three or four routes – the Pilgrims Way, which eventually heads west into France, the River route which could be the Rhine or the Ruhr or the Mosel, Eurovelo 15, 4 and 3! All of the Eurovelo routes head south along the Rhine for a while then head away in different directions. We are supposed to follow Eurovelo Route 15.
We tried to follow the signs for Eurovelo 15, but sometimes they disappeared all together and we were following the Pilgrim’s Route and then the River route. I figured that so long as we were heading south(ish) and had the Rhine to the right or left we were o.k.
The Rhine has always been a “working” river. There was a lot of loaded boats going up and down.
This small Town had the remains of a wall surrounding the Town.
There were areas where we were away from the river. Then we were directed back to it and discovered we would have to cross the river on a small ferry to get to the other side and follow the route in to Duisberg.
An older cyclist showed us the way around the busy industrial area. As we crossed the bridge going towards the Centre of Town we spotted this lovely old tower.
Then we hit Duisberg. What a depressing City and DIRTY.
Our memories of Germany have always been of a clean, country. We never saw any litter or garbage on the streets. Duisberg was a pig sty! Sorry to all our family but it was so depressing.
The worst of it was there were hardly any signs directing us through the City and when we did spot one it was often covered in graffiti and you couldn’t decide which way to go.
The north of Germany is very industrialized and therefore not very pretty. Alongside a large industrial plant and on the floodplain of the river we spotted these sheep. They looked very funny crowded together up the small hill. No idea why they were there.
This morning I had changed my garmin so that I could see which direction we were heading and if we were heading south I was happy. If we got turned around and headed north or west then I knew we were going in the wrong direction.
Eventually we found ourselves on the other side of the City and spotted an Aldi in the small Town of Mundelheim. By this time it was after 2:00 p.m. We had left Wesel at 10:00 a.m. – and only travelled 55 kms our average speed today was 15 km per hour!
I went in and bought Greek salads, bananas and 2 x chocolate milk (cost E5.50 about $8.50) and when I got outside and this young woman was trying to pick-up my sexy hubby. I can’t leave him alone for a minute! Actually she was very interested in what we were carrying and where we were going. She has done some smaller trips carrying a back-pack and was interested to know whether it is easier having panniers. Ralf told her that so long as the wait was distributed evenly it was much easier than carrying anything on your back for long distances.
We eventually found our way back to the Rhine and of course to top the day off, it started to rain. We still had another 14 kms to go the centre of Dusseldorf and no idea where we would stay for the night. We were about to cycle past this small Town of Kaiserswerth and as we looked down the street, it looked very pretty. I suggested to Ralf that we blow the budget and find a hotel for the night. Neither of us enjoy setting up a tent in the rain and having to cook in the rain.
We managed to get the last room in the Kaiserswerth hotel – cost E67 (Cdn $101.) including breakfast, worth every penny.
The weather was cool to start today and once again a head wind. The sun came out and I took my windbreaker off, but I didn’t put any sun-cream on, my arms are a little red tonight. At 4:30 it was raining and the rain is supposed to stop overnight. Hopefully it will be nice day tomorrow and the scenery will improve. Although we will be going through another big City (Dusseldorf).
Windmills: Ralf one Jacky one, both in small garden plots (allotments) Running Total Ralf 9 Jacky 5