1. I started the last day with 29 kilometres left to go, but decided that I wanted to go far enough to have the highest amount of kilometres in Sweden (even though I of course realized that someone else might be doing the same thing at the same time). I decided to go to Grästorp for one last doppio at Cafe Nordstan in 2012.

    After 58 very rainy kilometres my iPhone died during the last part of my final ride and for a while it seemed like all the data from this ride would be lost. Haha. After 72 hours in a ziploc bag with rice and silica gel it’s the phone rose from the dead for a while and the final upload could be done. 530 kilometres in total. All is well that ends well.

     

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  4. First and only day with company today when my friend Kristoffer joined me for a wet and windy ride towards Ljungskile on the west coast of Sweden.

    On our way back from Ljungskile we chose the road through the small mountains that makes Sweden look like Switzerland for a short time, even though we were told by the locals that would mean more ice and tougher conditions. After three flats in the dark rainy evening we arrived back in Vänersborg with the feeling that this was with no doubt the best way to sum up this year’s riding.

     

  5. Worst day of the Rapha Festive 500 with sideways rain, headwind, sand, snow, slush, sidewind and ice. Still A+.

    In the summer most of my rides take place in the area of Sweden known as Dalsland or at least go through it in one way or another. Dalsland is sparsely populated and there’s only one village large enough to earn the title city. This means that the roads here are not that well taken care of in the winter. Today I made the first attempt since the snow fell to ride in Dalsland, but failed already when I reached the first hill and it was covered with blank ice. See you in the spring Dalsland.

     

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  7. The original plan was to ride down the 90 kilometres on the smaller roads to Göteborg and then take the train back, but I realized that if things continued like previous days I would be very wet and cold on the train ride, so I went roughly halfways and back instead. I have very little knowledge of this area although I’ve been on the train through here hundreds of times.

    Ended up with 112 kilometres done today and two thirds of the Rapha Festive 500 completed now. Did my first Festive wheelsucking today when I put the Swedish police to good use and paced a patrol car for almost two kilometres. Sunny and pretty warm today until sunset when it turned very cold and the water bottles froze. A can of the traditional Swedish christmas soda julmust helped me get back home.

     

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  9. Short ride today after the longer one yesterday, mostly to check out what roads are good to go for tomorrow’s longer ride. Two hours of the first real sunshine in a long time and relatively clear roads, then sunset and back to icy roads again. Tomorrow it’s time to go south.

     

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  11. I decided to go towards the west and headed to Uddevalla. I first tried to take the smaller road around the lake Öresjö, but it was too icy even for these conditions, especially considering its hilly nature. Uddevalla is located right next to Byfjorden, a fjord from Skagerrak. After pouring rain and terrible headwind for 66 kilometres, the sky all of a sudden opened up and I got 15 minutes of sunshine before I turned into the rain again.

    If you’re ever in Uddevalla, make sure to visit Coffee Roomer. Once you get past the punny name they serve some of the best coffee in this area.

     

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  13. The Vänersnäs peninsula is a mystery to me. I’ve been here on my bike several times, but never on the ground for more than 10 minutes. First time with (lots of) snow today. The peninsula begins between the mountains Halleberg and Hunneberg and the further north I came the narrow road turned more and more into slushy snow with icy tracks. Fed myself with some panela courtesy of Cycling Inquisition and then turned around. These could be the same roads that Oden walked when he wanted to take a bath.

     

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  15. Halleberg is one of two mountains outside of Vänersborg, Sweden. The total elevation is roughly an unimpressive 90 meters, but it’s Scandinavia’s largest hill fort measuring 20 square kilometers with mostly very steep cliffs all around. Some historians believe that Halleberg is the place where Valhall was located.

    I squeezed in a short ride before christmas celebrations began and decided to try out the roads by going to Halleberg and back. Once I had climbed one of the few ways up the mountain at what could be a new slowest world record, it took my only a few seconds before I forgot about sore legs, the risk of running out of energy mid-ride or freezing to death, thanks to plowing down the mountain on icy roads covered by fresh snow in twilight.

    (Ride details on Strava)