Today in Finland on my way to Joensuu, I’d have skirted several very large lakes. To celebrate that plan, I cycled around Lake Barcroft fractally, following every road I could find that skimmed by its shoreline. At one point, instead of skirting around the lake, I crossed it on a bridge. I spotted a kayak in … More Resets

Towering Observations

It was a long way to go to simulate the Vaisalanmaki Lookout Tower we’d have visited today in Finland. I’d been in touch with Matti Koistinen, Executive Director of the Finnish Cycling Federation (FCF), about my route through Finland. He suggested posting it on the FCF Facebook page. Satu Ekmark jumped on it and suggested … More Towering Observations

War Monuments

Through Finnish forests, we’d have cycled to Puolanka. A 50-mile car ride east of Puolanka right on Finland’s border with Russia is Suomussalmi. There stands the Winter War Monument, a commemoration to 17,000 lives lost in a 105-day war in the brutal winter of 1939-1940 when the Soviets attempted to break through to the west but failed. … More War Monuments


Today we’d have cycled along a river from Rovaniemi to Ranua, where there is a zoo. I’m not fond of zoos ever since I went to one in San Diego in blistering heat and watched the polar bears suffer in their cage.  I cycled up from Bethany Beach northward to the hospital in Lewes where … More Unzoo

The Arctic Circle

Today, we’d have finally cycled far enough south to reach the Arctic Circle in the city of Rovaniemi, Finland, where it’s always Christmas. Santa Claus has his own post office in Santa Claus Village here. It’s tough having to read a half a million letters from all over the world every year. Santa shares a … More The Arctic Circle

Lakes and a Border

Yesterday, a few hours after the 1 AM sunrise, we’d have cycled out of Norway into Finland in a cold (39 degrees) rain, pushed by favorable wind. We would still have been north of the Arctic Circle in land speckled with lakes. Gareth, a Canadian cyclist who guided me in to Thunder Bay, Ontario in … More Lakes and a Border

Checked that Box

For years, I’ve either run or cycled through the parking lot that serves Teddy Roosevelt Island. At the north end of the parking lot, there’s an inconspicuous sign that’s always intrigued me. As today’s ride in Europe would have been a rugged ride, 79.2 miles with 8090 feet of climbing, much along rivers and one … More Checked that Box