rideFAR 2024: Come, ride with us! Through “The dark side of the Sauerland”!

rideFAR 2024 - lifeCYCLE Magazine will be a part of it! lifeCYCLE's Martin will guide a beautiful tour through the hilly Sauerland as a local community guide. Are you in?

When Raphael from Orbit360 and rideFAR asked me if I would like to be a guide, I had to take a deep breath. Such a long tour and as a guide? Will my old body be able to do this? Anyway, I thought to myself: there’s still a bit of time to get fit. Around 6 weeks, to be precise. So don’t waste too much time: The body needs to be in shape and the tour needs to be scouted. The result? You can find out for yourself on 25 May 2024! Are you in? You can find out what to expect in this article.

The lifeCYCLE rideFAR 2024 tour: “The dark side of the Sauerland”

Our rideFAR 2024 tour takes you over the hills and through the valleys of the western Sauerland – through an area that tends to lead a shadowy existence in terms of tourism. While places in the well-known Hochsauerland region such as Willingen and Winterberg evoke holiday feelings, most (motorists) get a headache when they hear about Lüdenscheid or Volmetal. Here, the A45 motorway stretches like an ulcer through the hilly landscape marked by industrial monoculture and bark beetle infestation and, thanks to a full closure due to the dilapidated (now demolished) bridge, causes permanent roadworks and truck convoys on the actually tranquil side roads all around.

The ridefar 2024 route from lifecycle magazine is unfortunately still a little bare here and there. But believe me: it's still fun and the gravel paths, most of which have been completely resurfaced, are the very best!
Unfortunately, landscape is still a bit bare here and there on my rideFAR 2024 lap. But believe me: it’s still fun and the gravel paths, most of which have been completely resurfaced, are the best!

And you’re supposed to be able to gravel here? You can! Certainly not everything is perfect here and the traces of human missteps are omnipresent. But there are also some good things about it. After all, intensive forestry has left one thing in plentiful supply: kilometres of gravel roads on which you can enjoy the 1,000 hills of the Sauerland completely free of traffic jams and traffic. And even if some of the once dark spruce forests would make the perfect backdrop for an apocalyptic end-time drama, stripped bare, furrowed and emptied by giant forest machines, small, green glimmers of hope are flashing in more and more places, which are in the process of reclaiming nature.

Not everything is perfect. And yet this tour is wonderful! It is completely unembellished and does not hide its faults. Nevertheless, it offers you pure gravel enjoyment with marvellous views of the wide hilly landscape of the Ebbegebirge and the azure blue waters of the Fürwigge dam. On the Nordhelle you reach the highest point of the Märkischer Kreis and at the Vollme spring you can take a look at the “nursery” of the river, which you will cross a few times today. You also cross the motorway twice. Fortunately, you immediately plunge back into the deserted landscape and enjoy the crackling of the gravel under your tyres instead of the traffic noise.

Highest point of the ridefar 2024 round: the nordhelle
The highest point of the rideFAR 2024 tour is at Nordhelle, where you can stop for refreshments.
Cake break at the genussmühle
It’s time for a cake break at the Genussmühle!

The rideFAR 2024 route is “only” around 100 kilometres long – but it packs a punch! It’s almost constantly uphill and downhill. Long climbs alternate with rapid descents. Boredom? Not a chance! However, almost 2,000 metres in altitude are not the ideal prerequisites if you prefer it flat and fast. If you love making your calves glow, you’re in paradise!

When you’re on the road, you’re always away from civilisation for longer periods of time – if that’s possible here. There are several cafés that will provide you with drinks and snacks if you run out of energy. And you are never “lost” in any other way: the route offers various shortcut options. You can quickly return to the starting point at any time through the Volmetal valley. Here you can view it in detail and also register directly:

rideFAR 2024 – The “rules”

The most important rule: Let’s have fun!

This works best if everyone knows and accepts a few things beforehand. Of course, this includes the general RideFAR rules, which you can read here.

What is particularly important to me is that we are not in a race! The aim is to set off together and arrive together. So we show consideration for each other and if the guide has the weakest legs, so be it.

Nevertheless, everyone travels at their own risk and nobody should be angry if something doesn’t fit. If someone is totally bored of waiting, he or she is welcome to ride ahead. If someone can no longer do it, he or she simply cuts short. In the end, everyone should have a great day. Ideally, we experience it together.

So basically we tend to ride at a leisurely pace. I have specified an average of 17 km/h. Just remember: we have a lot of metres of altitude ahead of us!

One particularly important point: I will (as almost always) have a camera with me. It would therefore make sense if it is okay for you to be photographed and possibly also published (for example in lifeCYCLE magazine). If you don’t want this at all, it is your own responsibility to communicate this clearly or to stay out of obvious photo situations as far as possible. If you don’t say anything, you agree.

Ridefar2024 0002 | lifecycle magazine
rideFAR 2024: Around the outside instead of through the centre – if in the city, then preferably via “secret paths” around it. 🙂

Further information

This tour is, so to speak, my XL house tour (and no, I don’t do it every day 🤪). It combines the most beautiful routes around the Halver lifeCYCLE headquarters into a day-long ride.

There are two options for buying snacks on my rideFAR2024 tour. At one of them (after about 2/3 of the tour), a very nice café near an old mill, I plan a cosy cake break. Otherwise there are no shopping opportunities without detours. So it’s best to take a snack (bar, sandwich…) with you.

Tips on how to get here:

Honestly, this is not Berlin and not Hamburg. We call this “the arse end of the world”. And it is, let’s say, “suboptimally” connected to the railway network. At least at the moment: Unfortunately, two actually not bad railway connections have been partially inactive for some time due to extremely slow construction work. Normally a regional railway runs through the entire valley – this is (still) not the case at the moment. Coming from Dortmund, you currently travel as far as Rummenohl. From there, the rail replacement service runs to Brügge. From there, it is best to cycle another 3 kilometres to the start of the tour. Coming from Cologne you can take the train to Marienheide, from there you can take the SEV.

The SEV buses normally take cyclists without any problems as long as there is sufficient capacity. However, this is likely to be problematic for larger groups.

Attention: This information is as of 26 April 2024. According to the rail operator, the line from Hagen to Brügge will be back in operation at the end of May. So it can get even better. 😉 So it’s best to check your connection again shortly beforehand – I’ll do the same and post updates here if necessary.
Admittedly: The journey is a bit “tricky”. But it works – I always have to do it that way. 🙂

Lifecycle fahrradpost | lifecycle magazine

Nichts mehr verpassen!

Mit unserer FAHRRADPOST bekommst du News rund ums lifeCYCLE Magazin und aus der bunten Fahrradwelt direkt in dein Postfach.

Wir senden keinen Spam! Erfahre mehr in unserer Datenschutzerklärung.

Leave a Comment

Item added to cart.
0 items - 0,00