• Scotland 2017 (3)

    View of the Scottish countryside from Stac Pollaidh.
    View of the Scottish countryside from Stac Pollaidh.

    We had actually attempted to climb Stac Pollaidh twice. The first time from the back, without a path. It was nice, but also quite exhausting, as the greenery is not just grass. So we returned back before it got steep. The second time we went up the hiking trail on the south side. Because of the altitude, it was still good sport.

    A time lapse of the sunset from the accommodation can be found on Ronny’s youtube channel: https://youtu.be/UqokoCJz76M

    3 hour time lapse of the sunset in Scotland, with sheep, great colours, and interesting clouds
  • Norway 2014 (9)

    Forested slopes on the Divielva river. View is downstream. (Norway)
    Forested slopes on the Divielva river. View is downstream. (Norway)

    After crossing the Divielva we hiked up for some time through idyllic forests. But it was also nice to have a wide view again at some point.

  • La Palma 2014 (5)

    View of the plains of Los Llanos de Aridane and El Paso, Pico Bejenado behind, and La Cumbrecita (the gap in the mountains) from a viewpoint near Montaña Quemada, La Palma, Spain
    View of the plains of Los Llanos de Aridane and El Paso, Pico Bejenado behind, and La Cumbrecita (the gap in the mountains) from a viewpoint near Montaña Quemada, La Palma, Spain

    My first weekend bike tour on La Palma led up the Cumbre along the LP-3, just to see how far I could get. Thanks to the early start, the road was relatively quiet. As a slow cyclist you are otherwise quite an obstacle, as it is not easy for the cars to overtake on the winding road. The altitude meters were challenging, but I was happy when I reached the tunnel portal at an altitude of about 1000m. After the tunnel I continued along the LP-301. I knew that the island gets flatter to the south and therefore expected only little more altitude. I should have looked at the map. The road went uphill for another 500m, only at the Refugio de El Pilar did I reach the highest point. I was very happy to finally be up there. The return trip, on the other hand, was just great.

    East portal of the Tunel de la Cumbre with Ronny's bicycle in front.
    East portal of the Tunel de la Cumbre with Ronny’s bicycle in front.
    Elevation profile (red) and speed profile (green) from Ronny's bike tour.
    Elevation profile (red) and speed profile (green) from my bike tour. I was definitely faster downhill than uphill. You can also count the numbers of hairpin bends going downhill, because I slowed down a bit for them.
    Geographic map with route (there was no GPS reception in the tunnel), created with https://github.com/ronnyerrmann/cycle_logging
    Geographic map with route (there was no GPS reception in the tunnel), created with https://github.com/ronnyerrmann/cycle_logging
  • Germany/Switzerland 2014

    Rhine bridge and border between Germany and Switzerland. The Rhine flooded in July 2014
    Rhine bridge and border between Germany and Switzerland. The Rhine flooded in July 2014

    We visited friends in Switzerland and went there by bike. Crossing the border is also part of it, here we are between the countries and between Waldshut and Koblenz. It’s not the most photogenic place.

  • Brittany 2013 (3)

    Sunset behind Le Mont-Saint-Michel, France, with lone cyclist on the mud flats.
    Sunset behind Le Mont-Saint-Michel, France, with lone cyclist on the mud flats.

    During our bike tour in Brittany we spent a night in Normandy, east of Le Mont-Saint-Michel. The tour there was quite flat and so we had time to spend almost 3 hours on Le Mont-Saint-Michel on the way there. We stayed only 6 km away and wanted to go back in the evening. However, not the boring way on the road, but over the solid mud flats. The sky was impressive. While we got going quickly, the Watt stretched out. Long stretches weren’t easy to ride, there were also a few creeks, it got darker, so that we finally longed for the road again and were really happy when we reached it. Luckily there was neither high tide nor fog.

    Illuminated Le Mont-Saint-Michel seen from the mud flats.
  • Norway 2014 (8)

    Wade through the river (Divielva, Norway)
    Wade through the river (Divielva, Norway)

    According to the map we expected a bridge, but only found a ford. It wasn’t the first we had to cross, the nice thing was that the sun was shining this time. The only problem was that we only had one pair of sandals. This was always allowed to be worn by those who wanted to bring their backpack to the other side. And so there were a few extra crossings, but after everyone had splashed around extensively, we could continue. From here we only walked upwards:

    Elevation and speed profile of the day
    Elevation profile (red) of the day
  • England 2022 (3)

    Spring in England

    The Easter weekend came like (nearly) every year with the best weather, lots of sun and warm temperatures. Being outside is nice, it’s so green and flowery. This is one of many impressions from the weekend, as a flower lover one could take photos like this every 5 minutes. I took these images on a 90 km cycle tour, the longest this year, so far.

    Cherry blossoms
    Cherry blossoms
  • Racism in the middle of society — Ronny Errmann

    Actually I wanted to meet a friend tonight who has his job at the university in Central Europe and wanted to go to a friends wedding at the weekend and wanted to see some other friends before then. But as the meetup didn’t work, I can write a little bit about racism. Racism is the […]

    Racism in the middle of society — Ronny Errmann

    Racism is the reason why he cannot enter the UK. He has the wrong passport and therefore does not have the privileges that one has with a Western European, North American, and probably also Australian, New Zealand, or Japanese passport: You can get into almost any other country without a visa. He only got as far as the check-in counter at the airport, where he was told that he was not allowed to go to England and would need a visa to enter the country. It’s just not on the British Border Control website, so he didn’t apply for one. And for many years he could easily travel without a visa.

    At least the airline was kind enough to put him on a later flight so that he could make a few phone calls to the British Embassy and his nationality’s embassies in the capital and in London, as well as British border control. And there seems to be this rule with the visas, but not officially, because the British are too cowardly to cancel the mutual agreement on visa free entry, and instead have only an internal rule for their own border protection. After seven hours of phone calls, it was clear that the trip would not work out.

    And of course nobody is responsible either, there is nothing official, so that he will still have to pay his own expenses.

    And all because he was born in a country on the African continent. And that’s the racism of the white western world. This is not only a British problem, also in France, Denmark, Germany, Spain, Austria, Sweden, other European countries we treat certain groups of people as second class citizens. Every day.

  • Hawaii 2011

    View from the Subaru telescope on Mauna Kea, Big Island, Hawaii, to the telescopes of the Submillimeter Array and Mauna Loa at sunrise
    View from the Subaru telescope on Mauna Kea, Big Island, Hawaii, to the telescopes of the Submillimeter Array and Mauna Loa at sunrise

    After one of the nights of observation at the Subaru telescope in Hawaii, I was given a guided tour of the telescope and was then able to enjoy the sunrise from the “catwalk”. In the image above you can see the shadow of the mountain I’m on projected onto the other tall mountain on the Big Island.

    At an altitude of more than 4 km you are almost always above the clouds, so there is little rainfall/snow. And due to the volcanic formation, the landscape looks like lunar landscape. As a contrast, another photo 40 km away and 4 km further down.

    West Coast north of Hilo, Big Island, Hawaii
    West Coast north of Hilo, Big Island, Hawaii

    This was the trip where I rode my bicycle to the airport.

  • Germany 2011

    Sleeping place in the morning, surrounded by green, just before packing up
    Sleeping place in the morning, surrounded by green, just before packing up

    If you go on a business trip to Hawaii (and the North American East Coast on the way back) and live 250 kilometres away from Frankfurt Airport, why not cycle to the airport instead of taking the train? And while you’re at it, why not go wild camping too? Having experience of long bike rides before, the trip didn’t seem too crazy to me. The bike tour didn’t really improve my CO2 footprint, but the feeling of having achieved something was still good. I didn’t usually have that much luggage when cycling: a lot more clothes, my big hiking backpack, laptop…

    However, I noticed the biggest and unexpected benefit on the return trip. I flew back to Frankfurt from Boston overnight, the day of the return flight I had explored Boston on a hired bicycle. I think I was in Frankfurt at 8am, still had to go to the hotel where the bike (and everything I didn’t need in the USA) had been safely stored for the last 3 weeks, then pack everything from the travel backpack into the bike bags, early noon and off I went. And so I cycled on two different continents within 15 hours. It went upstream through the Main and Kinzig valleys, see how far I can get. I spent the night on the watershed to the Fulda valley, the last few meters uphill I noticed that I had slept only on the plane the night before. But on the other hand I didn’t have problems with jet lag, but felt that I could use the time well. I slept great in the tent and felt really good the next morning.

    Fully loaded bike on an empty bike path