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Grand Tour de Öffentliche Verkehrsmittel Stage 1/59 – the Ringbahn

Strava Activity
Distance in km46.0
Elevation in m195
Amount of newly ridden kms in Berlin from wandrer.earth19.0
Blood glucose values throughout Stage 1 of the Grand Tour de Öffentliche Verkehrsmittel

I’ve always had an affinity for public transport planning and maps. They are a lovely graphical representation of where’s what in a city and many cities have their own iconic graphics (London, Berlin, New York to name three). One disadvantage of travelling underground as opposed to cycling is that the names on many of the stops are associated with the stations rather than what’s happening around the area. 

I wanted to delve into the extensive Berlin public transport network and cycle along all the public transport routes (except the ferries). This meant all the bus, tram, U-Bahn and S-Bahn routes. I knew that this was going to be a huge undertaking – over 3000 km – and so it was elevated to the status of a Grand Tour.

On 19 November, it was time for the Grand départ. After spending the last 3 days furiously planning the routes for this Grand Tour, I knew I had to set off and make the most of the beautiful autumn light. While deciding on the different stages, I knew that the Grand départ of the Grand Tour de Öffentliche Verkehrsmittel was going to be the Ringbahn (S41/42).

I rushed out the front door with Earp, my trusted fixie, after setting up my logging system (aka tick boxes in a spreadsheet) for each stage. A quick check of my blood sugar showed that I made the right decision since it was still relatively high, but drifting down, after breakfast. 

Jungfernheide is the closest point on the Ringbahn to home, so from that point I followed my route in a clockwise direction (so avoiding too many left hand turns). This was quite a fun route to use a fixie with. I do plan on swapping to my road bike for the longer stages as anything > 100 km is a bit too much for me on a fixie atm. 

There were mainly well maintained cycle paths on the majority of the route, the sketchiest part is right behind Gesundbrunnen going on to Behmstraße, which has a Col de Behm Strava Segment for a whole 8m of ascent up the bridge. This is one of those bike paths that spits you out between single-lane traffic and parked cars which isn’t much fun given the amount of delivery vans. I’m failing to mention what will no doubt be a running theme during this Grand Tour – vehicles parked in bike paths.

View from the top of the Col de Behm

Prenzlauer Berg makes its way into Neukölln, but not before I had a coffee stop at the Treptow Park waterfront and ate my homemade energy bar (Recipe from Minimalist Baker  – highly recommended! Especially after Nadja’s exceptional idea to melt some chocolate on top. Dark for me and milk chocolate for my sweety pie).  I injected half the required amount of insulin for the single piece which was the right decision since I had very good blood glucose levels for the rest of the ride (no hyper of hypo to speak of!).

The rest of the route was fairly straightforward and the main thing that caught my attention was a washing machine delivery man carrying a washing machine on his back with an over-the-head grip! Very impressive strength!

Tomorrow should be Stage 2 going up to Dallgow-Döberitz via Spandau in some overcast weather.

The % distance I cycled in each district during Stage 1 of the Grand Tour de Öffentliche Verkehrsmittel

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