One man. One bike. One gear. And a long way home for Christmas.

It’s a while since I did anything about touring. But in the middle of winter, Markus Stitz will be cycling from Scotland’s capital all the way to his home town of Erfurt, the capital of the Thuringia state in Germany. In 13 days, on a single gear bike.

Markus, currently living in Edinburgh, has toured in New Zealand and Scotland before, and has been training in the snowy conditions over the past few weeks and does not seem fazed by it! (click on the image for more photos)

Wintercycling Dunblane to Callander

Markus is used to taking cycle touring a bit further and is properly prepared for the upcoming challenge. “My cycling trips in Scotland have been pretty unique this summer, so I came up with describing them as race touring trips. Essentially I had no time for longer tours with working two busy jobs at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and Edinburgh International Festival, so I had to squeeze in as much as possible in the weekends. Doing more than 400km in two days is probably not what people understand as cycle touring, and adding the Scottish weather in made them real adventures. But as my body was coping very well, I came up with the idea for this Christmas tour.”

The ride is supported by DFDS Seaways and Montane, based in Ashington near Newcastle, which has provided Markus with some warm clothing for the trip.  There is a full preview of the trip in the press section of Markus’ website.

Itinerary (as of 5/12/2010):
o 11/12 Edinburgh – Sunderland
o 13/12 Ferry from North Shields to Amsterdam
o 14/12 Amsterdam – Hilversum
o 15/12 Hilversum – Nijmegen
o 17/12 Cologne
o 22/12 Ilmenau (route between Cologne and Ilmenau is flexible, weather permitting)
o 23/12 Erfurt
o 24/12 Schwobfeld (optional)

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