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Veluwe - Day 1 : The warming up

I (Bart) gathered all my gear and cycled to Koen at 8:45. Bram was already there. Of course Koen's mom told (forced?) me to eat something, I must be starved so soon after breakfast. Koen's brother Stijn gave me a Liga cookie, but more about those later. Koen hadn't packed anything yet, all his stuff was spread out over the kitchen floor. We had planned to leave at 9 but he didn't even had panniers.
 

Koen and his mom left to visit the bicycle store while Bram and I waited. At 9:45 they were finally done and almost ready to go, Koen only needed to attached the tent to his bike. In some mysterious way he had lost one of the bungee cords required to do this. Fortunately we found another one and, after Koen's mom forced us all to take some fruit, we were finally ready to leave.
 

After departing an hour later than planned the first 40 km of the trip went well and we decided to have lunch. Between the three of us we ate an entire bread. We continued cycling along a train track and a marshy area. The road was perfectly straight and about 6 km long. At the end was a village where we bought more bread for dinner and tomorrow's breakfast. While Koen went to the bakery Bram and I waited outside. Because of our natural attraction several girls came up to us to talk. When they came closer we saw they were more Koen's type, they were only 14 years old. They asked if we smoked and wanted to buy them cigarettes. Of course we didn't. When Koen left the store the girls harassed him, but fortunately he restrained himself. Even in exchange for a kiss he wouldn't do it. We continued cycling and after 60 km arrived at the "Strawberry land" amusement park.

I don't know what one could do there, but it seemed interesting. We cycled via Tienray, Wanssum and Meerlo and started looking forward to a break. Fortunately we came across a map that showed a nearby village with a campsite. After another 30 minutes of cycling we found it. Today it seemed like it had been difficult to find a campsite, but compared to the following days it was really simple. Although the 80 km we had cycled was 5 km more than planned, we still felt fresh.

In the front is Bram's tent. We were put on a random piece of grass that was left after making a parkinglot.

In the rain we started cooking sausages and soup with our friend Stefan's pans on a disposable barbecue. Afterwards we had enough time and energy left to visit the local bar. They sold Hertog Jan beer in a beautiful glass. Before going to sleep we played cards for a while in the playground.

route1.jpg

This is the route of today. We didn't make too many detours and visited many natural areas and dirt roads.

Distance cycled: 80 km