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Cycling down the Danube

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Day 8, 8th September 2008

Bad Gögging - Staubing - Weltenburg - Kloster Weltenburg - Kelheim - Poikam - Bad Abbach - Oberndorf - Matting - Regensburg


Radweg day 8

From Bad Goegging to Regensburg 51 kms (431 kms from start)

Photo: Google maps


From Maria's Diary:

The day dawned fine, sunny and dry! We had a lovely breakfast in the dining room with all the other guests. As I went to pay I discovered my purse was missing. After searching through all my things I came to the realisation that I must have dropped it accidentally in the cafe the previous evening. We told our hosts and then resolved to find it.

This meant going back to the cafe and writing down the phone number on the door. The cafe wouldn't be open till noon and we didn't want to wait around till then. We managed to contact the owner who would be coming in at around 10.00. So we waited till then and we discovered that I had the wrong cafe!

Once again we tried to ring the owner when we found the right cafe and as luck would have it we didn't have to wait long. They had the purse which was a big relief. It was a black cloth purse with a red swiss cross which I had bought in Geneva at the UN to replace the wallet which was stolen in Barcelona. This meant leaving Bad Gögging very late. As we left town we called in to have a look at an old church. Not far out of Bad Gögging we then rode across country through some magnificent hopfields

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Hops are important for the brewing of beer. We first passed hop trellises which had already been stripped, then found these which were yet to be harvested. The plants are tied to very high horizontal wires.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008


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Hops are a climbing plant. They are trained to grow up strings or wires which support the plants and allow them significantly greater growth with the same sunlight profile. Energy that would have been required to build structural cells is also freed for crop growth.

Male and female flowers of the hop plant usually develop on separate plants (that is, the plant is dioecious), although fertile monoecious individuals will appear occasionally. Because viable seeds are undesirable for brewing beer, only female plants are grown in hopfields, which prevents pollination. Female plants are propagated vegetatively; or male plants are culled, if plants are grown from seeds.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008
Text: Wikipedia


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Luckily we came upon some men and machinery harvesting the hop plants. It was fascinating to watch.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008


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The track went up and down through farms until we got towards Staubing. These asparagus plants had been left to grow and produce big fat crowns ready for the asparagus harvest next spring.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008


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From Maria's diary:

From Staubing we followed the right bank of the river through Weltenburg and then hugged the bank towards Kloster Weltenburg, where we had to take the ferry to Kelheim. The Danube goes through a steep gorge here and the Radweg is actually on the boat. It is marked as a dotted line on the map.

We were getting close to the Kelheim gorge, and came across these people getting a raft ready to float down the narrow passage. It looked like it would be a lot of fun!

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008


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The boat service comes every twenty minutes or so in the summer, and there were a few boats on the circuit.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008




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From Maria's Diary:

The boat trip seems to be quite popular and there were many people visiting the monastery in the fine weather. We bought tickets for the boat at a kiosk near the monastery entrance.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008




Radweg day 8

There were other cyclists waiting as well and we wheeled the bikes down the gangway and stacked them in the wide passageway.

From there we climbed the stairs to the upper deck where we sat in the front row, ordered a beer and enjoyed the view. You can still see the iron rings on the cliff walls which were used in the past to help pull the boats upstream or to secure them temporarily. There was a very good commentary on board (in German) which explained the facts about this section of the Danube.


Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008


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Finally we set off down the gorge. It was a superb day, so we sat on the top deck.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008


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Soon the gorge narrowed and the current became stronger.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008


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The sign shows the number of kilometres to the mouth of the Danube, and after this point the river widened again.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008


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Looking back up the river and to some steep cliffs for'ard.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008


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I got us some beers and we enjoyed the view!

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008


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The massive cylindrical structure of the Liberation hall at Kelheim appeared over the river banks. The river continued to alternately narrow and widen.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008


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Another river boat passed us, just as we came out of the gorge.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008


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Looking aft and forward. There weren't many passengers on this trip.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008


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Approaching the end of the cruise.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008


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The Altmuhl River joins the Danube at this point.

King Ludwig I. constructed this Liberation hall at Kelheim in memory of the Wars of Liberation fought by the German states against Napoleon.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008
Text: adapted from http://www.regensburg.de/




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From Maria's diary:

Twenty minutes later we were in Kelheim. Don wanted to visit the archaeological museum in Kelheim, not far from the boat berth, but it was closed on Mondays.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008




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In order to get to the main part of Kelheim, we crossed this pedestrian and cyclists bridge over the Main-Donau Kanal, and were still on the left bank of the Donau.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008






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At Poikam we crossed back to the right bank of the Donau, towards Bad Abbach.

The statue is of Nixe, a water sprite of German mythology, usually in human form or half-human and half-fish.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008
Text: http://www.thefreedictionary.com/Nixe




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The radweg is well signposted most of the time.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008




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We always enjoyed the opportunity to take one of these cyclists/pedestrian boats across the river.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008




From Maria's diary:

There is a large island in the river bend with a canal on the left hand side. Here we saw a few barges which looked like they had come from Holland. The river now goes around a sharp bend and the radweg follows it closely so that you can get good river views for most of the way.

We met up with the Kiwis again along the way which was a surprise. We really thought that they would be ahead of us by then. Instead of going through Matting we took the Treppelweg (Levee bank) marked green on the map out of Matting and joined up with the official Donauradweg at Unterirading.

From there the Radweg morphs into a riverside roadway which passes camping areas and holiday homes. Then it became a joggers/cyclist/walkers path which seemed to go on forever.

Radweg day 8

From Maria's diary:

There was a campsite marked on the edge of the town's sporting fields so we kept an eye out for any signs. After registering, we found a lovely site near a table and bench setting and set up the tent. The facilities were excellent and it was a huge camping area. We were surprised to see Erwin and Sonia again as they came into camp about an hour or so later. We thought they would have been ahead of us by then. It was nice to catch up with them. They had decided to take a rest day the next day so were not in a hurry to see the town.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008




From Maria's diary:

We cycled into Regensburg along the shared pathway dodging numerous joggers and casual cyclists as well as people walking dogs and prams. It was a fair way into the city centre and we walked our bikes once we entered the Old town. Regensburg is a beautiful city with many historic buildings and a Gothic cathedral with a very impressive facade.



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Regensburg - every view was better than the last. It is a beautiful town.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008
Text: adapted from http://www.regensburg.de/




From Maria's diary:

Unfortunately the light was starting to go as we explored the town. We walked through an archway into a traditional restaurant called Zum Augustiner. What a surprise - it was wonderful. They had tables set up in a large courtyard lit by candles and strategic lighting. The traditional setting called for a Bavarian meal of Weisswurst although the Bavarians would probably be horrified at us eating this at night.

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The buildings in Regensburg are superb.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008
Text: adapted from http://www.regensburg.de/


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We found a wonderful little restaurant for the evening meal.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008
Text: adapted from http://www.regensburg.de/


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After the meal, we wandered around the city centre, and saw the Regensburg Cathedral, floodlit at night.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008
Text: adapted from http://www.regensburg.de/


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Regensburg Cathedral, dedicated to St Peter, is the most important church and landmark of the city of Regensburg, Germany. It is the seat of the Catholic diocese of Regensburg. The church is the prime example of Gothic architecture in Bavaria.

It is impossible to fit the cathedral into one shot, the street in front is narrow, so I took two, and stitched them together.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 8th September 2008
Text: adapted from Wikipedia




From Maria's diary:

It was dark when we began our trip back to the campsite. Cycling the track with only our cycle lights was terrifying as we couldn't see very far ahead and had to rely on our bells if we thought there was someone in front of us. We made it in one piece although Don made it a rule to never do that again!

Radweg day 9

Packing up next morning.

The tent performed flawlessly. It is easy to put up, take down and put away, it is waterproof, insect proof, dry and comfortable, and weighs only 1800 gm, which is light for a commercial two man tent. I have added permanently attached carbon fibre pegs, which keeps the weight down, and have re-waterproofed it with silicone spray occasionally.

Photo: Don & Maria Hitchcock 9th September 2008






Cycling down the Danube

 | Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3 | Day 4 | Day 5 | Day 6 | Day 7 | Day 8 | Day 9 |  Day 10 |  Day 11 |  Day 12 |  Day 13 |  Day 14 |  Day 15 |  Day 16 |  Day 17 |  Day 18 | 

Day 8, 8th September 2008

Bad Gögging - Staubing - Weltenburg - Kloster Weltenburg - Kelheim - Poikam - Bad Abbach - Oberndorf - Matting - Regensburg


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