Reinbeck to Cranz
What a stupid planning mistake. I could punch myself... Today's Sunday, all shops closed. Nothing special. Tomorrow is Whit Monday. All shops closed as well. And I'm running out of food. Being Hamburg, I'll probably find food to keep me going but I not exactly what I am planning on buying. Mostly I am angry at myself for not thinking of it.
Anyway... After a warm, dry night I wake up fairly well rested and getting up and packing is easy.
On another lovely, sunny day, I start with a bit of forest walk, followed by a surprisingly nice walk through dunes - in the suburbs of Hamburg. I certainly enjoy that stretch very much. Right after the dunes, there's a small lake. Despite plenty of algae in it, I jump in, do a bit of swimming as well as cleaning, in order to look and smell somewhat presentable for my city walk. It's 07:30 and most people still seem to be sleeping.
Once I leave the lake, I soon hit the outskirts of Hamburg. I wouldn't say it's an attractive part. Not have I seen so much rubbish laying on the streets since I've been in South East Asia. Not a good first impression. The city looks tidier the closer I get to its center, which is busy, full of tourists.
Time flies, it's already past noon when I take a short break near Dammtor to watch the Ironman race and grab some pastries and a smoothie to maintain my blood sugar level.
From Dammtor to the Landungsbrücken on the other side of the city, it's a lovely walk in the park. Well marked, which hasn't been the case in the suburbs. Or maybe it's because I put on my glasses after reaching the city center and now can see them better ;)
By this time, the sun is brutal. I'm glad to be in the park rather than on the streets.
Landungsbrücken are as busy as it gets. I hope all these people would scatter as I head east towards Blankenese, but no. All of the last 15 kilometers are super busy. But also super interesting. Especially, if you are into ships and aircraft. Hamburg's harbor, which lies across the Elbe River, is massive and the ships, from the paddle wheel steamer to the container ship, interesting to watch. Just after the harbor comes the Airbus plant. As I spot all the newly built aircraft from airlines all around the world, my heart beats a bit faster. Such a wonderful sight.
By 16:30 I reach Blankenese, from where my ferry is supposed to go across the Elbe. It's idling at the jetty though, because the water level is too low. But since the tide is coming in, they are positive they could leave in 15 or so minutes. Good timing! I use the time to get a Fischbrötchen (probably the last one on this trip as it's a specialty from here) and ice cream.
Just as I finished my ice cream, the decision was made to sail across the Elbe. Great! It took probably 15 minutes to cross. Partly because the river is wide, partly because the water level was still low and the captain had to use caution.
Once across, it's like being on another planet. Back in the wild. Well not completely. There's a fish and chips take away. And I can't resist and get one. It's been awhile since my last fish and chips back in Scotland, 3 years ago.
From the Jetty to my 1nitetent spot in Cranz it's just a couple of 100 meters. It's a lovely spot right on a side arm of the Elbe.
The weather turns bad surprisingly quickly and as soon as I have pitched my tent, the first raindrops start falling. Good timing once again.