Day 1. Utrecht to Hoog Soren via Amersfoort and Harderwijk.
Distance Cycled 93km. Average 17.4km/h Max 35.5km/h.
We had been very glad that we were able to pick up the trikes the evening before. Despite this, it took us a while on the Friday and on the Saturday morning to work out how to carry enough stuff. The trikes had only a rear rack so we were limited to one pair of panniers and a Rack Pack each (unless you buy pod-panniers that hang underneath the seat on the sides). We realised that a) we would have to take less and b) there was nowhere for our handlebar bags. In the end we used my rear Back Roller Classics and matching yellow Rack pack on the Scorpion, and Damae's grey front panniers and the larger black Rack Pack together with a 15 litre Sealine bag, fastened down with elastics and straps on the TriceNT. We had been lent a special top bag which fitted on top of my Rack Pack with my handlebar bag in it. Damae's handlebar bag, having straps on the underside, was fixed to another Sealine bag containing folding chairs which was in turn fastened on top of the rack pack on her bike. Heath Robinson eat your heart out.
It was time to go but not before the required photo shoot. Stan on his steed for the weekend, Damae on hers, and the two of us together. After the hassle of trying to get stuff on the bikes we now left rather late on Saturday afternoon with mixture of apprehension and anticipation. It was clear we were not going to get to Oma in Harderwijk for mid-afternoon coffee so Damae re-arranged the appointment.
Starting off from home, we ran out to Amersfoort via Groenekan and after Den Dolder along the section by the railway though the forest. I'd wanted to find and use that route for some time now but had not taken the time to look at the maps. Damae navigated well all the way to Amersfoort. She was helped by the good LF9b signs and because she was sharp that day (in fact she was most of the weekend). As we neared Amersfoort we stopped along the way to eat some late lunch and drink some tea. It was all very strange being so close to the ground and not having to balance. The route runs across part of the Utrechtseheuvelrug so we managed to cycle a few minor inclines on the way into Amersfoort. The sun was up and the weather looked promising. The wind was not particularly favourable but hey we were on recumbents, so a headwind should present no problems. Hmmm, we obviously had lots to learn this weekend!
After an easy ride to the edge of Amersfoort we followed the signs towards the centre of town. Running into town was fine and we were seeing Amersfoort in its best light (albeit a dog's eye view). The old centre was lovely and quite different to the centre of Utrecht. Unlike Utrecht, Amersfoort does not have a split level centre (wharfs and wine cellars at canal level, the streets three metres above them) and looked rather more Germanic than Utrecht.