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Old 10-16-2011, 01:08 AM   #1
nordicbiker OP
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Location: Near Stockholm, Sweden
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Autumn allroad touring in Sweden

Hello Folks!

For almost ten years I am living now in Sweden, a country that offers great possiblities for touring on all kinds of roads. Best thing: because of the Allemansrätten (the "Everybody's Right) you are allowed to pitch up your tent virtually everywhere, observing some basic rules.

Now that fall is coming and the trees are chaning colour I have been out two weekends, as long as the days are sufficiently long and darkness doesn't take over already at 15:30. This time I decided to drive south from Stockholm to Sörmland and northern Småland. Started right after work at friday 16:00 and managed exactly to reach my destination, before darkness came.

After setting up the tent I spend the evening at one of the rocky outlooks over the lake, but allready at 21:00 I crawled into my sleeping back. Next morning I was woken up by hundrets of grey geese, who had spend the night on the lake and now where ready for takeoff for their trip south. A magical morning!

Slowly the mist cleared and the sun came out.

So after a short breakfast I was on the bike at 8:00 - can't remember when I managed to take off that early last time - you know, we are all getting a bit older over time...!

After the mist had cleared a fantastic day lay ahead. Morning temperatures are now around 5 degrees C, so you really need to dress warm. But that weekend daytime temperatures managed (for a last time this year?) to crawl above 20 and when parked the bike in the sun the thermometer went up to 29. Ok, that's cheeting...!

When I discovered this beautiful spot in the early afternoon I seriously considered setting up my tent here for the day, but then decided it's too early and I should make use of the daylight. Darkness comes soon!

So on we went, Kati and me. This time I had packed quite light, no hard boxes but just the two Wolfman panieres, a tank bag for those things you want to reach quickly (like the camera) and a little rollbag containing my warm sleeping bag and the madress. And o course my tent, a Hilleberg Nallo which has been with me on many adventures.

Many gas stations out on the countryside have been forced over the last years to shut down, because of a stupid law which would force them to sell a certain amount of biofuels (E 85, biogas, biodiesel etc), but many owners can't afford the investment, so they shut down, which is very much annoying for the locals. And of course also for me, if you stand there with an empty tank. So it's good to plan ahead and refuel when you have the chance to do so. In Björkfors however, an old station from the 50s was preserved and today offers a lot of nostalgia.

Later that afternoon I came to this beautiful stone setting in the shape of a ship... well, I don't know exactly when and why, but the spot itself was so beautifully located near a lake, that I decided that it's now time to set up tent. Of course a good bit away from the protected historic site. But I had my own beach! Just those water temps, brrrrr.....!

This evening I was spending quite some time watching the stars. I was a warm night, around 10...15 degrees C and boy, was it dark out there!

Next morning the mist was back and made riding quite difficult: the helmet visor collection small drops all the time made it necessary to stop almost every kilometer to wipe them of. Driving with the visor open doesn't help either, then my glasses catch the drops. Maybe I need to consider a laser therapy?

Up to now the roads where quite reasonably, but suddenly I noticed that mister Garmin had guided me on a previous railway track. No rails any more, quite easy to drive, but then this! Should I just push on? No, better not, I walked that wet half kilometer ahead and checked it out. If I sink 260kgs of KTM in the mud out here I will have a hard time finding someone with a tractor to pull me out. So it's better to check the situation first - this showed that driving through won't be a big deal, the water was max 15-20cm deep and the ground solid (railway) gravel.

After that roads improved again and I really enjoyed riding through the beautiful Småland landscape. Compared to the areas north in Sweden, where wide forests characterize the landscape, there are much more open areas here. People worked hard here to remove stones from the fields by hand and looking at those never ending stone walls one can imaginge why so many crossed over to the other side of the Atlantic, where they hoped for an easier live.

I had a stop of one of Swedens biggest/oldest trees, an oak near Rumskulla. What a gigant of a tree, measuring 13m of circumference around breast height!

On we went, beautifuld small countryside roads, easy to drive and ver scenic!

Tourist season is short in Sweden. I found a beautiful road, crossing a labyrinth of lakes and land east of Tranås, but what I didn't see on the map or GPS was, that I would need to cross on a ferry named Victoria. Normally those little ferries operate at least every half hour, but I soon realized that the place looked quite deserted. Absolutely nobody around! So I checked the timetabel again a bit closer and figured out: the last ferry crossed over September 30. This is Oktober the 3! So I would either need to wait until next spring - or drive back those 25km to the last crossing. The ferryman had gone home for this year peparing for Christmas.

A beautiful road, even two or three hairpins, but needed to drive really careful - the wind had spread a lot of leaves all over the wet asphalt!

Everything took a bit longer today, to I decided to shorten down my way home. Needed to be at a meeting of my foto club at 19:00, so now I needed to use the bigger roads.

Summary: a nice autumn trip, great tent spots, nice road, beautiful colours and the last comparatively warm nights of the year! Now the tent will probably be packed away for some months and soon snow will "imprison" my bike in the garage for some months.

I did another nice trip yesterday, almost 350km around Uppsala north of Sweden. So now it's time for breakfast and then I will be out on the bike again - this time my mountainbike. Need to do something for my shape! Hope you enjoyed my report!


nordicbiker screwed with this post 10-16-2011 at 01:20 AM Reason: Pics added and text corrected.
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Old 10-16-2011, 01:43 AM   #2
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Wonderful pictures. What do you use as a remote for the pictures with yourself in them?

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Old 10-16-2011, 07:11 AM   #3
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Thanks for sharing your trip, fantastic photos. The one with you illuminated with the stars above you is especially cool.
'89 Honda Rebel 250cc,'94 Yamaha Virago 750cc,'79 HD Superglide 1200cc,'09 Yamaha Silverado 650c,c '11 HD Electra Glide, '13 1200RT[/FONT]

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Old 10-16-2011, 09:42 AM   #4
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Thanks, great to hear that some folks like my pics and tour reports. Have posted here much to seldom! And sorry for some typos and grammar errors, this was too early in the morning, while typing I was inhaling the first coffee of the day...

Those pics with myself on them are either done with the build in "countdown timer" and a delay time of 20sec, in case of the star pic the exposure time was around 30sec and I used my headlamp to illuminate myself. The other pics where done using the build in timer, which allows you to automatically shoot a series of pics at a certain time. So I set the camera to start in 5minutes taking 30 pics with a frequency of 1/sec. The camera clock needs to by adjusted to the time shown on my GPS, so I know exactly when it's going to start taking pics. Fortunately there are so few people around in the Swedish countryside, that my camera was always still waiting for me when I came back some minutes ago!
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Old 10-16-2011, 04:40 PM   #5
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Great photos,thanks for sharing!
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Old 10-16-2011, 09:05 PM   #6
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Those photos are awesome. I too would like to know what camera you are using. Great use of available features.
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Old 10-16-2011, 09:29 PM   #7
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Great report

Thanks for showing us your beautiful country. Nice set up on your KTM too.
"Experience alone is not the great teacher; Experience has to be multiplied by intelligence to yield sustained progress." Phil Schilling
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Old 10-17-2011, 12:16 AM   #8
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Thanks for the stories. Some parts of Sweden seem to look like Minnesota. (my home)
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Old 10-17-2011, 12:30 AM   #9
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Beautiful scenery and great photos. Thanks for sharing your trip.
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Old 10-17-2011, 02:10 AM   #10
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Outstanding! Beautiful tranquil locations. Very peaceful looking. Thanks.
I'd rather be dragging a club than clubbing in drag.
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Old 10-17-2011, 03:23 PM   #11
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God. Family. Motorcycles. Guns. Music. Books. Dogs. Beer. Baseball. Work. That about covers it.

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Old 10-17-2011, 09:22 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by slugsmasher View Post
Those photos are awesome. I too would like to know what camera you are using. Great use of available features.
Those trip pics are taken with my good ole' Nikon D200 using a 2.8/20 or a 1.8/35. This is quite a compact setup which is ok for trips like this. I recently sold most of my DX stuff and upgraded to a Nikon D700 with FX sensor, so I sold all of my DX Zooms. The 16-85 would be ideal for a trip like this, but I will not spend any money in DX lenses any more. I had also a light carbon fibre tripod with me on the bike, otherwise no chance you can get good shots of yourself.

Just the last pic (yes, I admit, I cheated a little bit...) was done at home a day later, this time using a Canon G11, which I always carry with me on the bike (both motorcycle and MTB). It fits so well as a final pic in the report.
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Old 10-18-2011, 07:25 AM   #13
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Lovley photos

I have ridden some of those roads, Björkfors is a quite beatufull place.
By that ferry there is a good restaurant and the camping there is also good.
Just on the other side of that short bit of water there are miles and miles of gravelroads. :)
Mvh Jens on a big black Goldwing
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