Saturday, August 21, 2010

The last summer overnighter

It was time for a last overnighter for the summer. The following weeks will see some work related traveling and after that it is certainly fall.

I started from Turku at 17.25 on Thursday. The weather was sunny and warm enough for a short sleeved jersey. I rode the usual route from Turku via Paimio to Salo, using mainly small roads.

Bike packed and ready.

Nice small roads.

Lost again... One aim was to check out the trails from Salo to Teijo. The trail description leaved something to be desired.

Back on the correct trail.

Getting dark in the dense forest.

At one point I simply could not find the correct trail anymore. It was now getting dark rapidly, so I decided to set camp here a little after 22:00 (sunset was at 21:15), maybe 10 km south of Salo. One thing that struck me was how silent it was in the forest. No more birds singing. They have done their thing by now and will soon move south.

Riding statistics: 80 km and 4.5 hours of riding.

Friday. I slept quite well and did not to get up until around 07:00, even though a robin just a few meters from me did its best to get me up early. It takes only one and the silence disappears.

Morning porridge in the making.

My intentions was also to check a part of the Hanko peninsula north of Skogby, so I decided to ride directly there by the asphalt road, about 40 km.

In Västerby. From an mtb rider's point of view it is a shame when the old nice doubletracks get improved.

Västerby trails


Now some nice trails, as well as some bushwacking followed. No pictures, since I was tormented by deer flies. I've never experienced such an amount of the nasty small bugs. They were flying around me in the hundreds, rather than tens, which is usually considered quite bad.

Lunch at Vitsjön III. No deer flies here, but during the lunch I picked out 20 of them from my hair and body. For lunch I had some sort of freeze dried Pasta Bolognese, which actually tasted great, probably since it lacked the dreaded sodium glutamate (E621) usually found in these. I think everybody should boycott sodium glutamate: It is probably unhealthy (proof still lacking), has a specific taste and enables using much poorer food ingredients, since it does make up for some lack in taste.

More tank blockings.

It is always a little sad to see the abandoned places a bit from the main cities and villages. These places have been made in the forest with great effort and have supported families, in another time. Back then the landscape would have been much more open with cows grazing. Now these places just slowly whither away, or in the best case are used as summer houses.

More forest roads.


Vitsjön II.

Vitsjön I.

Now a two hour ride mostly on poor forest roads, as well as some asphalt, followed. Around 19:30 I came to the Teijo area.

Dinner time. I tried a meal from the Norwegian Real Turmat series. It was better than the typical Reiter meal.

Another sign of the coming fall was that I saw three flocks of geese, around 100 birds in each, flying above me. The northern geese are slowly flying southwards.

This was also the first test of my new tent, a Tarptent Double Rainbow.

Summer bug bivy mode.

Vestibules partly in use.

Good night.

This day was rather hard and I did not eat nearly enough, so I was a little weak in the evening. 147 km and 11.5 hours, including 2 hours of breaks.

Saturday. I deliberately pick a camp spot where I could see the sun rising. I woke when it was getting lighter and started making porridge and coffee.

The sun rose around 5:50. It was a beautiful morning.

On the move again at 7:15 (I enjoyed my coffee very slowly). First some singletrack and then forest roads. Yesterday's lack of food was felt in the legs today.

Back on (single)track.



Shortest way home, 65 km on mainly asphalt. I would have neede two more hours to map out the route from the Teijo area to the point I arrived at on Thursday, but since I promised to be home for lunch I went directly home at this point.

Home again after 88 km and 4,5 hours of rather hard riding.

Here is a slideshow with more pictures.


  1. The picture quality just keeps gettin beter and beter. Nice.

  2. Great report, and very informative (I try to avoid all E Chemicals as well) and beautiful photos. Here in Tampere/ Kuru we don't have any deer flies yet, but I am not looking forward to them either - I find them much worse than mosquitos.

    Nice to see you using the Double Rainbow, btw - I think it is a very nice tent design.

  3. Hendrik, the Double Rainbow does seem quite nice and versatile. It is big enough for me and one of my children, and in summer bug bivy mode it offers very good visibility to the outside. After thorough seam sealing it weighed 1120 g, so it is quite light, though not ultralight. The fall should provide ample opportunity to test it in hard rain to see how it deals with that.

  4. Incredible photos! Very nice chronicle.

  5. That was a fantastic report and superb photos.

  6. Thanks for posting! Amzing sunrise/sunset photos!

  7. Hello!

    I've been forwarded to your blog! I love it.
    Thanks for sharing. I do a lot of MTB too, but my blog is about Motorcycling.
    I've added you among the blogs I follow.
    Keep on posting.