The first week of my ride across Europe to raise funds for World Bicycle Relief proved rather epic. To use such a cliché may raise eyebrows but I assure you, my legs and lungs will corroborate this assertion within this post.
With my initial ride completed, I felt buoyant and ready for whatever lay ahead. Or at least, that’s what I believed.
If you recall, I mentioned that the first ride was a lengthy journey consuming both day and night which didn’t overly concern me given the phenomenon of the midnight sun. This is when the sun never fully sets for several days each summer, north of the Arctic Circle.
The goal was to reach the Baltic Sea as swiftly as possible since I was already nine days behind due to unforeseen issues that delayed the trip’s onset. But such is life.
During the subsequent four days, I embarked on some monumental rides, including a 320 km journey, succeeded by a 274 km one. These left me thoroughly exhausted yet brimming with a sense of accomplishment.
It’s worth noting that the majority of these rides were marred by headwinds and rain, rendering them quite miserable. But again, such is life. That week was so intense that I lost 4 kilograms which completely caught me off guard.
I crossed the Finnish border and two days later, the Swedish one. Upon reaching the Baltic Sea, I took a train to a city near Stockholm to make up for four days of riding. After all, the Arctic Circle was the Northern Europe highlight I didn’t want to miss.