Hard to not be happy in Denmark when there’s so much ice cream everywhere. Only my second day in Copenhagen and I lost count of my gelatos. But the itinerant creed says, don’t stay in one place too long, so things are about to change for me.
Today I biked in Copenhagen, and it was glorious. Without the trailer, my bike just flew. It turns out that riding a racer in a city where most people ride upright bikes is like driving a Tesla next to a PT Cruiser. Newly reckless with this realization, I started mingling with the fastest, most ballsy bikers (I ride in San Francisco for heaven’s sake, we have balls there!). And boy were we FAST.
I rode the 13-km Harbour Circle (Havneringen), the highlight of which is of course The Bicycle Snake, the overpass bridge for bikes across the harbour. This really is a unique ride, so I took a video.
Being from Cali and all, I couldn’t resist having a burger in Copenhagen, and once again I went off the beaten path to a hole in the wall I’d read about: Banana Joe’s Burger. I had Joe’s Special here, a sublime meaty monster with an egg on top and an elegant Indian sauciness. All the trials and tribulations I suffered on this trip felt worthwhile for me to get to sit here and eat this thing. Joe himself came out and chatted me up about my travels, and about American burgers. Good guy this Joe, hats off to his craft.
I ended the day with an afternoon at Amager Strand. It’s amazing how small Copenhagen seems when you have wheels (and when you’re rolling at 20 mph on them!). It takes just 20 minutes to get from one end of town to another. Amager is to Copenhagen people what Baker Beach is to San Franciscans, or Alameda Beach to East Bay people: it’s where people go to chill out, ride cruiser bikes by the beach, get a tan and of course have some ice cream. Unlike the Pacific though, this sea is actually warm enough to swim in too.
Today was my last day in Copenhagen. Sadly, it’s my last day on this leg of the trip too. I’ve been beset by a sprained ankle since the brutal roads of Germany, and my injury has been swelling and hurting despite my best efforts at compression. Going into Sweden at this point is risky, since Swedish trains in Skane (Southern Sweden) don’t take bikes, so there is no Plan B if my ankle gets worse, or if there is continuous rain. Given these factors I had to make the executive decision to take a break.
Tomorrow I’m flying to Bucharest to spend time with my family and friends. Fingers crossed that my bike arrives too – there are many beautiful roads to be cycled in Romania and more adventures await there.
It’s bittersweet to leave Denmark and my Northbound route. This tour has been sobering in so many ways.
I’ve cycled 791 miles (1273 km) over 3 countries in 19 days.
Camped at 10 campgrounds.
Climbed 13,500 feet (4113 meters).
Had 0 flats (zero).
Seen more beautiful places than I can count.
Learned fewer foreign words than I can count on one hand – because everyone speaks English so well!
If you’re reading this: cycle in Scandinavia. Alone, with friends, it doesn’t matter. Just get on two wheels, be outside, be open. Sure it’s scary, but it’s well worth it. If I can do it, anyone can.
Some old Eddie Vedder seems in order too, as I pack my bags. See ya later, Denmark!