|Distance in km||57.1|
|Elevation in m||178|
|Amount of newly ridden kms in Berlin from wandrer.earth||17.1|
Some unexpectedly sunny but cold weather presented an opportunity for another Stage. Since the temperatures would not go above 8°C and there was a WKG league race that evening, I opted for the shortest remaining stage. This meant I could enjoy a more relaxed breakfast, for which I only slightly reduced the bolus amount. I also injected a slightly lower amount of basal insulin in preparation for the stage as well.
I headed out towards Hertzallee, the major bus terminus at Zoologischer Garten, for the start of the N26 bus route. This route starts out on Kürfurstendamm, passing Breitscheidplatz and Wittenbergplatz, where the U-Bahn station is having a face-lift and covered in scaffolding. Next up was a sharp left at Nollendorfplatz to head towards Großer Stern (Big Star) and into Moabit, through the Hansaviertel.
In order to get to Wedding, where the bus route terminates, the route passes along Beusselstraße. This is a pretty congested road since there is an Autobahn exit just over the Beussel Brücke and it has no dedicated path making for the most part. Full alert is required! The bus route crosses the Westhafen canal and heads on Seestraße (this time with a much appreciated dedicated bike path). There are some lovely views of Westhafen, the largest harbour of Berlin, which houses some impressive industrial buildings as well. The rest of the N26 bus route is along Seestraße and terminates at the intersection with Müllerstraße, where the Seestraße U-Bahn station is.
The 106 bus route was up next and this starts at the end terminus of the N26 route. The 106 bus route also follows the same roads as the N26 all the way up to Großer Stern. During this Stage, I noticed a huge memorial on Levetzowstraße where a large synagogue used to be. This synagogue was one of the collection points used by the Nazis before deporting Jews.
The 106 route continues through Mitte and southwards into Schöneberg for a stop at the Südkreuz train station. On the way to Südkreuz, the bus route passes through some quieter streets and I was greeted by a great view of the Gasometer when turning into Leuthener Straße. After Südkreuz, Sachsendamm was next where the sounds of all the vehicles on the Berlin Autobahn were really loud!
A right turn onto Alboinstraße brought up a curiosity for bus routes – cobblestones! I have noted during the 20 stages so far that bus routes do not pass on cobblestoned streets. Some streets have had their cobbles paved over with asphalt, you can see this when potholes arise and cobbles nastily sprout out. Having said that, this section of cobbles is fairly tame compared to other streets in Berlin and would be a one-star section in Paris-Roubaix.
The final section of the 106 bus route was right after Alboinplatz on Eythstraße right in front of an impressive water tower. Next up was heading due West towards Steglitz and its bus terminus close to the Rathaus (town hall) for the 188 bus route.
The 188 bus route starts in Steglitz and immediately heads into the Lichterfelde district to service the many fancy residential areas of this district. The final half of this bus route was on cobbled roads yet again! A truly anomalous stage so far. This would be a two-star section in Paris-Roubaix, as the cobbles were more uneven and it was a much longer stretch than that of the 106 bus route. The final part of the 188 route passes next to the Parkfriedhof (Park Cemetery) that is walled off and even has lookout towers! Maybe because some famous people are buried there? The 188 bus route terminates at Appenzeller Straße which – as its name suggests – is part of the Swiss area of Lichterfelde.
I made my way towards the Lichterfelde Süd S-Bahn station for the final bus route (the 248) of this Stage. I passed three buses that were advertising Malta as a holiday destination – whoop! I also felt a bit peckish so I had a coffee break at the same little kiosk as on Stage 5 and ate a protein energy bar. My blood glucose levels were doing well and since there were only about 15 km left of the stage, I didn’t need an energy bar loaded with carbs. So I decided to go for the protein energy bar that only had 15 g of carbs and didn’t inject for these carbs.
After the coffee break, I headed across (or rather under) the train tracks towards the Thermometersiedlung (Thermometer Residential Estate) and Réaumurstraße in particular for the start of the 284 bus route. This is a very narrow bus terminus and takes expert driving skills for the buses to pass each other in the opposite direction! The 284 bus route passes the Lilienthalpark which houses a memorial to Otto Lilienthal and the gliding experiments he performed in the 1890s. I made a note to come back to this memorial and explore some more.
The 284 bus route then heads towards the Lichterfelde Ost train station through some residential streets including tiny sections of cobbles! So tiny that they don’t warrant a star rating though. The route passes through Lankwitz and it’s rooty cycle paths before getting to Steglitz. The final section on Albrechtstraße is a traffic slalom where the bus route doubles as a bike lane but also (illegally) triples as a parking zone too. At least the road is very wide making this section pretty fun. The final stop was the Rathaus Steglitz bus terminus and that was the final bus route of the Stage.
I made my way home mainly on Prinzregentenstraße (Prince Regent Street) which as a Fahrradstraße gives priority to cyclists, except when crossing the intersections of course. I was happy to get home and warm up as my toes were pretty cold at this point. My decision not to inject for the protein bar was a good one as my blood glucose was pretty stable for the final stretch of the Stage. Time to rest and recover for the rest of the day until the WKG Time Trial in the evening.