We set off from Bellingwolde just after 8.30am . There had been a light drizzle but it cleared so I packed away my wet weather gear- wrong – it started to rain in earnest so they had to be unpacked yet again.
We continued to follow the LF9a along a zig zagging route through Zandstroom , Bilijham and into Winschoten where we called into a supermarket that I had not expected to see – Aldi – as I had been told they weren’t in the Netherlands. From there we headed to Meedam and stopped after 20 miles having our 2nd breakfast at 12.00noon. At least we sat dry but it was still very cool for June.
From there , we cycled along to Froombach , having taken a 6 km ” exploration detour”. However, we did see a local village fair and I was delighted to see a lady knitting and selling socks on her stall. I showed her my home knitted socks and despite a language barrier we were able to communicate abut socks of all things.
The fair was also supporting and raising money for the local ambulance/paramedic service and it was nice to see they had a demo unit there too.
From Noodbroek, we crossed and recrossed bridges over a motorway until in Englebert we came across a campsite. At 4.00pm , we decided that would be it for the day and pitched the tent. The sun made a brief appearance so we cycled on unloaded cycles to Harkstede to buy a few more food items. I wanted some rice but it wasn’t available in a small quantity, so made do with ready prepared potatoes, to have with a tinned chicken tikka masala. During the evening we saw three hot air balloons pass overhead and apparently its very popular in this area as the air currents work well.
One looked like Betty Boop.
Next day was midsummers day and the dawn was grey and damp but fortunately by the time we were packing up, the weather had dried. The youngsters in the tents next to us had only just gone to bed and as we started to get sorted it rained , so the tent was packed away wet. We had to wear waterproofs all morning but as it was cool, it wasn’t too uncomfortable.
When we got to Groenigen, the route as is usual was difficult to follow but at least the sun showed its face. There was an amazing statue of a father helping his child to ride a bike. I loved it.
This is just one bike parking place , there were about 3 or 4 we passed. Incredible. How anyone retrieves their bike is beyond me.
We had some lovely off-road riding on great paths through woodland, heath and moorland with plenty of ups and downs. Who says the Netherlands is flat?
We finished the day at a campsite near Havelde and treated ourselves to Pizza and ice cream in a small restaurant in the village.