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Grand Tour de Öffentliche Verkehrsmittel Stage 18/59 – Hail Viktoria

Strava Activity
Distance in km92.2
Elevation in m247
Amount of newly ridden kms in Berlin from wandrer.earth38.7
Blood glucose values throughout Stage 18 of the Grand Tour de Öffentliche Verkehrsmittel

An opportunity for another Stage of the Grand Tour de Öffentliche Verkehrsmittel came about due to Nadja cancelling our day plan last minute plus, what I thought would be a relatively quiet day after Storm Viktoria. I was expecting some blustery weather but definitely a lot friendlier than the past few days since Stage 17. After a small reduction in bolus and basal insulin and eating my breakfast of champions, I headed out towards Südkreuz for the first bus route of today’s stage.

Apostel Paulus Kirche / Apostle Paul Church in Schöneberg

The 184 bus route starts just south of Südkreuz and past the Berlin Autobahn ring on Reichartstraße. The only reason for anyone to visit Reichartstraße would be for the industrial buildings, otherwise nothing of interest. This bus route then makes its way through the Southern districts of Berlin before terminating at Warthestraße in the neighbouring town of Teltow. 

The start of the 184 bus next to the Berlin Autobahn Ring

I passed along some of the main throughways of Tempelhof, such as Tempelhofer Damm and Manteuffelstraße, until crossing the Teltower Canal at Attilastraße to cycle through the Lankwitz district. One L-District of the Zehlendorf borough turns into the next L-District (this time Lichterfelde). The 184 bus route passes through the main high streets of Lichterfelde which are full of shops, bakeries and small cafes. There are a few larger modern shopping centres littered around too.

Jeder Baum spendet Leben / Every tree gives life – in Seehof, Teltow

The Lichterfelde district borders Teltow, which is in the state of Brandenburg, and passes through the Seehof area which is full of modern residential buildings. These were built after the fall of the Berlin Wall that separated Lichtenfelde, part of West Berlin, and Teltow which was part of East Germany. Deeper into Teltow, there are more historical buildings but I felt that it was overwhelmingly made into a modern town complete with a large mall area on Oderstraße. The 184 bus route services this mall right before turning on to Warthestraße and reaching the end of its line.

Colourful Teltow Kindergarten

I took Bolt on a little off-road stretch to get to the start of the next public transport route, the S26, at the Teltow Stadt S-Bahn station. This led me next to a whole host of streets named after Canadian cities and provinces (O Canada!). I made it to the S-Bahn station of Teltow Stadt, not the same station as used for regional trains, where there are the cutest benches painted to look like mini S-Bahn trains! Absolutely adorable! 

Bolt posing with the mini S-Bahns at Teltow Stadt station

I decided to have a coffee and food break at the Netto supermarket before starting off on the S26 route. I was drinking my coffee and eating my energy bar, for which I injected the smallest amount of insulin possible – 0.5 units, where teenagers were congregating to smoke. Must have been break time at the nearby school. Nadja also warned me via text that the weather was going to get worse and I could see some dark grey clouds heading right my way. 

Unfriendly clouds near the Edenkobener Steg in Lankwitz

I was not discouraged by these clouds and started following the S-Bahn tracks of the S26 route through Teltow and back into Lichterfelde. Once I was through Lichterfelde and Lankwitz – those L-Districts again – it started to rain quite a bit. The cloud had passed through by the time I got to the Priesterweg station and here was the start of a great cycle highway of the Schöneberger Südgelände (South Grounds of Schöneberg) parallel to the train tracks that go all the way past Südkreuz and into the Gleisdreieck Park at Yorckstraße. 

Priesterweg S-Bahn station

It was on the last stretch of this cycle highway that the second ominous cloud came by – this time to hail on me! I underestimated the lull of Storm Viktoria. It had stopped hailing by the time I got to the Technic Museum but was still raining pretty hard so I opted for the emergency rain cape. A few minutes later, by the time I was at Potsdamer Platz, it was all clear and blue skies were back.

Blue skies at Brandenburger Tor!

In central Berlin, specifically the stretch between the Anhalter Bahnhof and Humbolthain stations, the S-Bahn passes through the underground tunnel imaginatively named as the ‘North-South Tunnel’. Many of these stations were the famous Geisterbahnhöfe (Ghost stations) during the cold war since the stations were located at border zones between East and West Berlin. 

The Bösebrücke / Evil Bridge (WTF?!?) at Bornholmer Strße

The next section of the S26 route passes on many of the sections of the Berliner Mauerweg (Berlin Wall Path) where the Berlin Wall was located. Some of these sections were not really suitable for a road bike as they were really rooty and muddy. I plan on doing the complete Mauerweg at a future point – a One-Day Classic event – so it was useful to recon these paths.

Wilhelmsruh / William’s Peace S-Bahn station

I was now in the northern district of Schönholz, previously visited during Stage 6, and heading into the Wilhelmsruh (William’s Peace) district. The final stretch of the S26 route was along Cyclopstraße – which was appropriate as I felt like I was cycling with one eye since the other was teared up from the wind! The final stop of the S26 is at the Waidmannslust (Hunter’s Passion) station in the Reinickendorf borough. Here both I and my blood sugar needed some food so I ate a non-homemade energy bar which boosted me for the rest of the ride.

Waidmannslust / Hunter’s Passion S-Bahn station

The next and final bus route of today’s Stage was the 122 bus route starting at Titiseestraße, not far from the Waidmannslust station, and ending at Kurt-Schumacher-Platz in Wedding. This bus route snakes through the Märkisches Viertel, Rosenthal, Wilhelmsruh and Reinickendorf districts. The many people living in the high-rise blocks typical of these areas are then able to easily reach the local schools, shopping centre (Märkische Zeile) and hospital. 

Highrise buildings in the Märkisches Viertel

The 122 bus route then terminates at Kurt-Schumacher-Platz, a bustling area full of shops, restaurants and bus stops. It is also a hub for Tegel airport with a larger parking lot designed for a park and ride service to the airport. Kurt-Schumacher-Platz is also a great place to see the airplanes landing at Tegel airport. I didn’t have to wait long for an EasyJet flight to pass overhead.

Planes passing over Kurt-Schumacher-Platz

That was it for public transport routes for today’s Stage and I made my way home on the cycle path parallel to the Berlin Autobahn Ring section (again) that heads to Tegel. The weather had stabilised at this point so I could enjoy some dramatic cloudscapes. I was also very happy with my blood glucose management during the ride even though it did get a little bit low towards the end of the S26 route. All things considered this was a pretty enjoyable ride despite everything that Viktoria threw at me.

The % distance I cycled in each district during Stage 18 of the Grand Tour de Öffentliche Verkehrsmittel

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