The self-experiment: Brompton and sailing - on the high seas with folding bike
Alex Hüfner is a photographer, endurance athlete, cyclist and enthusiastic Brompton traveller. He has been travelling by folding bike and train for years, exploring all of Europe and the rest of the world. A passion for sailing was added 10 years ago. Even an Atlantic crossing was part of it. Here, however, with a constant urge to move, a challenge was added: "Sailing great, movement too little". Here he tells us his Brompton story on the high seas.
As an endurance athlete, there is one big challenge for me in sailing: lack of movement. I know that the body is constantly working through the rocking movements and is thus trained. But honestly, is that enough? So I looked for a solution - and came up with the idea of putting my Brompton to the test on the high seas.
From Barcelona to Mallorca
What could be better than to test the cooperation of folding bike and sailing with an experienced sailing team? The Teamgeist sailing crew around Michael Haufe is planning to sail around the world and this time they have planned two bikes for the turn. The perfect set up.
Sunday afternoon in Barcelona. The sun is still shining mildly in spring, the sky is blue and I enter the boat with two Bromptons. I'm looking forward to the turn, excited to use the bikes on our tour to and around Mallorca.
A crew of 8, for 1 week. We want to cross to the island on a night trip, then spend the remaining days anchored in bays and enjoy the island to the full.
The first feeling of happiness and the certainty that I didn't bring the bikes on board for nothing comes to me in the first marina. The season hasn't really started yet and the harbour is still in the process of preparation. The sanitary facilities near our jetty are closed. The nearest shower is far away, but I have the solution with me. I get on my bike and a short time later I'm standing under warm water. A perfect start!
Then it's off to Mallorca: weather check, shopping and route planning. Often our two Bromptons in the bright colours Matcha Green and Fire Coral are right in front of the boat on the jetty. Direct access - for every crew member it is already a much-loved means of transport. At night, the bikes are stowed on the boat.
A dinghy boat with Brompton
After an uncomfortable night at sea, we drop anchor in Port Sollèr on Mallorca. In no time at all, the bikes are on deck and ready to be used. We reach the shore with a dinghy. So there is water between us, our Brompton and the land, which has to be crossed with a small boat. No problem for our C Lines: the sea is calm and the handling of the bikes uncomplicated. In the dinghy with 4 other people we go ashore and from there - quickly unfolded - continue to explore the harbour and the surrounding area on two wheels.
Alex, can you get something for dinner? I hear this question more often now from the ambitious cooks in our crew. No problem at all. The radius is of course many times greater and very pleasant when using a bicycle on land. The Bromptons don't take up much space and are easy to stow away, even when not in use. On land, they unfold quickly and ride almost like a "full-size" bicycle. Suddenly I look at our sailing trip with a different eye - and the issue of "lack of exercise" has also been settled.
Follow Team Teamgeist on their journey around the world
The two Brompton C Lines now get to sail around the world on the Teamgeist sailing crew's boat and see the world's ports. If you'd like to follow the journey, check out their Instagram Profile.