Day 8-2. Tönning to Højer contd.
The sky was still grey but it wasn't especially cold as we waited for the kettle to boil. We'd cycled all this way without a proper stop and we felt good after the enforced rest day. Damae's bike with its new wheel was working fine and fifty kilometres before lunch would be a doddle. We made this into an extended tea break, ate a sandwich as well as some biscuits and half an hour later were on our way.
Shortly after starting we passed a much larger pumping station the Arlauschleuse, that drained out into the Arlau Speicherbecken. In the distance the dyke was still visible as were groups of windmills turning in the brisk breeze. There were sheep everywhere too and a small group of cyclists some way ahead of us. They were too far away to chase down, and in any case, the aim of today was to cross the border into Denmark not win a speed trial. We followed them at a distance for a while before we came to our next set of signs. Here we turned left and followed the road out towards Lüttemoor-Siel. Our tailwind turned into a side wind as we cycled across the flat expanse towards the large coast dyke. We approached the sluice gates and then climbed up the side of the dyke to get even more expansive views of the mudflats on the other side. It looked quite busy out there today with people wandering out to the Nordstrandischmoor. We also noticed a railway line on the mudflats, that climbed up and over the dyke and ran out to the island.
We rolled down to the outside of the dyke and were occupied with taking in view for a few minutes. I found a boat lying on the mudflats, and took a picture of the railway line and some buildings huddled on the Nordstrandischmoor island in the distance. Then it was back to the serious business of putting in some kilometres. Unlike earlier in the day there were no sheep here to slow our progress just a gate every now and again. We were not the only cyclists out today and passed two elderly ladies who were also heading north.
The gates were easy to get through the tailwind helped with opening them and we continued to make good progress. I stopped to take a picture of two deer that we spotted on the marshland between the cycle track and the sea. It was quite a surprise to see them there in the open. However the deer were quite shy and ran away from us quite quickly. I only just managed to get a photo before they disappeared out of range.
Not long after we arrived at Schlüttsiel and decided it was time for lunch. Next to the ticket office we discovered a bench in the sun, with a view of the small harbour and sat down to enjoy our meal. Not only had the sun come out, but we had passed the fifty kilometre mark, and, by a long way. Our bike computers showed that we were close to the seventy kilometre mark. Even better it was only one o'clock in the afternoon which suggested we might be able to reach Denmark today. As we sat and ate, the two old ladies we'd passed earlier arrived and cycled on past us.
Behind us at the top of the dyke there was a visitors centre with, if I remember correctly, a cafe. I wandered up to the the top of the dyke and looked North in an attempt to see what lay ahead. By look of it, it was more of the same. That was fine with me, as it meant we could still enjoy the tailwind. I walked back down to find Damae packing up and getting ready to go. The ferry that had been filling slowly during lunch was on its way out to sea. It was time for us to go too. We left the train of empty baggage trailers in the now empty harbour and, in good spirits, we headed North once more.
With the wind behind us and the sun shining weakly we raced towards Dagebüll. When we got there it seemed that Dagebüll consisted of a large hotel, a train station and a beach. It was much smaller than Husum and we didn't stop to look around. After Dagebüll the route would take us away from the coast towards Niebüll. We turned inland on the way out of Dagebüll following the route as it zig-zagged across the polder landscape. This meant that our breeze alternated between being a helpful tailwind and a sidewind depending on which direction we were zigging or zagging.