Hiking report

Hiking around Unterbachersee!

One great thing about hiking is that you can go to different places. This is certainly one of the reasons why this event has been so hugely successful. On the other hand, of course there is not an unlimited number of paths, especially not in the internet. For now, I have been largely dependent on this site, which proposed really cool ones. This time, however, I decided to create my own plan for the first time. In order not to make a huge mistake, I chose Unterbachersee, which is a lake near Düsseldorf and is well known among the locals here. Essentially in summer, there will be people everywhere.

But firstly, there is something I finally managed to do this time: sharing the path with other people (who have only Google Maps). I personally do not use Google Maps, because Openstreet map is simply much more precise and has much more information, especially if you are in the nature. But it is true that most of the people heavily rely on Google Maps (which I call a capitalistic solution). What I was doing wrong was to try to send a gpx or kml file directly, which for me made sense because “gpx” is a Google Earth format. But in reality, I had to create a new map using my laptop with my Google account. Then a kml or gpx file had to be imported, which then can be shared with other people. Essentially, you cannot directly share a file with Google maps and it has to be web-based.

So far so good. The problem is, in the end no one took a look at the map… So in the end I was still the only one who knew where to go. This is not really a problem for me, but I guess for everyone it is much more convenient if they know where to go, because they may want to have a break whenever they want to and they may not want to be dependent on my decisions. I will continue promoting the idea of walking independently further on.

Here in Düsseldorf we saw a horrible period of time in the last 2 or 3 weeks concerning the weather. It was simply cold all the time, although it was not quite the case whenever we hiked. Today, it was not exactly the same, since the weather was much better yesterday. Still it was mildly warm and the sun was still there every now and then.

By the way, there was no French today. Maybe because of the election (which later turned out to be partially true). On the other hand, there were quite some locals here. Maybe I already talked about that but it is fairly rare that locals appear whenever I organise something on Couch surfing. Probably because they usually already know a lot of people here. The same thing happened in France, although it was rare to see Germans there, too…

The nature around Unterbacher See looks somewhat artificial. Maybe it is not, but just for being a recreational place it seems to me like this. At the same time, there was for example a farm where we could get fresh milk, or also an outside café to have a break. Maybe we were also lucky that the weather was not perfect, because I can well imagine that there would be a crowd if the weather had been good.

You may already know but I’m actually a theoretical physicist. And theoretical considerations often diverge extremely from the reality. This was quite the case today, as I found out that the path that I planned was not 12 km, but 20 km in the end. Not to mention that it was VERY calm in the train back to Düsseldorf 🙂

Well it is not directly related to today’s session, but as I organize the hikes, there have been quite some people who asked me to organize other things, which include:

  • Canoeing
  • BBQ
  • Laser game/Laser tag
  • Soccer
  • Demonstration by bicycle

Well, it is not impossible that I organise those things. But I just want to make other people understand how easy it is to organize something, especially when a full program is already there (like canoeing or laser game, but maybe not for demonstration…). Of course I am the one who learned it merely a few years ago, but now I really want to encourage you all to dare to do what you have in mind. Just give it a try and you’ll see there’s no reason to be afraid of anything.

So, the next session is a little bit special, as we’ll go to Drachenfels, which was suggested by many people. It is quite far away from Düsseldorf. So we can almost consider it as a day trip. Anyway, thank you for your suggestion and I’m looking forward to seeing you there!

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