12-Jun-2004 -- Just one week after my bike-trip to confluence 51°N 10°E, I planned another visit this week-end. This time confluence 50°N 11°E, which is southwards of my starting point Ilmenau and 75.8 km bee-line away of it. A very long distance for a one-day bicycle trip with return but I knew from last Saturday that this shouldn't be the problem.
Again an early start at six o'clock in the morning, but with sun so I could start in short gear, climbing up the mountains to 'Rennsteig' during the first few kilometers. Got some fog higher up around me, following the 'Rennsteig' to Masserberg before I went down to Eisfeld. A few kilometers later I passed the old German-German border without too much traffic, because of the newly build 'Autobahn' parallel to the old road. The change between 'Thüringen' and 'Bayern' is very obvious if you compare the appearance of two villages from both regions.
I followed the river 'Itz' after passing Coburg and changed later to the valley of the river 'Main' heading south-east. Just 15 kilometers north of Bamberg, I left the valley and climbed up to Windischletten where the confluence is located.
Passing the church at noon, I left the street by the last houses and followed a track across the fields. A few hundred meters farther, I was just 50 meters away from the confluence, placed my bicycle near the way and walked a few meters along some trees over a meadow. I spent some time with the confluence-dance, because the point is just a few meters among trees on the border of the meadow. Finally I got all "Zeros" and could take the GPS-photo; for the pictures in all directions, I left the point about five meters to the South. Interesting for previous visitors is perhaps that there is no fence around the confluence location anymore.
After I decided how to get back on the map I followed a muddy track to Oberoberndorf and heard the first thunder, but I was happy that the first half of the day and my confluence visit were dry and sunny. So I got my first shower on the way over Staffelstein and Lichtenfels with quite a lot of wind from all directions.
Further on the way to the North, I passed Coburg and reached the 'Thüringer Wald' again. In the meantime I got my third shower climbing up a mountain, because the weather was changing from clouds to sun all the time. After passing the 'Rennsteig', I visited the reservoir in Goldisthal on the top of the mountain and cycled down later into the Schwarzatal. Because of roadworks on my way home, I had to do some extra kilometers before I reached finally Ilmenau in the evening, just before the sunset.
This week-end, I had a really nice 15 hours bike-trip over 234.1 kilometers, 2550 meters climbing up the hills and mountains, and temperatures around 9-20°C. The weather was much nicer than the week before, I got four showers on the way back this time, but the sun was warm enough to dry me up. Especially the change from 'Rennsteig' and 'Thüringen' in contrast to 'Bayern' and the 'Main' valley with the confluence in the region was a very nice impression!