Friday, July 6, 2012

MURPH'S HOLLAND..................."The Bicycle Diaries", Pt I.

In this new series of images that I have just started here on the blog called
 "Murph's Holland,The Bicycle Shots", I set myself an assignment of only shooting what I see from my morning bicycle rides while here in the Netherlands.

My morning bicycle rides here in Elsendorp started out as a way to get a little exercise and stay fit on the road, but as my fitness level started to improve and the distance I am able to ride increased, I started to see all sorts of 'Kodak Moments' as I rode, so one morning I decided to bring along my camera backpack with my smaller backup camera to my Nikon D3s, my Nikon D700, and my favorite all around carry lens, the Nikon 28-300 f/3.5-5.6G ED VR.

The mill in Milheeze, the Netherlands.
Called "Laurentia", this mill was built in 1890, and is one of the 1100 + working mills in the Netherlands today. 
There are over 4,000 Windmills in the Netherlands, but the Dutch only count complete working mills for their database.

Initially, getting on the bicycle and going for a ride was purely just to get a little exercise and stay in shape. The Batavus is not even a performance road bike, just a regular 3 speed sit up style typical of the type of bicycle ridden here in Holland, but the Netherlands has so much natural beauty and great bicycle roads that it overrode my initial plan of just going for a 10 or 20 mile cycle to work out.
 I never really thought I would put up much mileage on it. But it's the only bicycle I have available to use, it's free and I don't need any special shoes or tight shorts, so I just adopted a 'make the best of what I have' attitude and went with it.

After seeing some of the images I took, I started to look at my morning bike rides in a completely different light, since my motorcycle, soon to be sidecar( actually, it is a sidecar now, the sidecar was officially attached yesterday) is still not ready, and I have time to explore on my hands, and cycling is a great way to get around Holland.

Riding a bicycle to photograph has another benefit in that you'll run out of things to photograph in a 50 mile radius pretty quick, so I'm now planning a week on the road on the bicycle, just a sleeping bag, 1 camera, 1 lens, thats it.
I have no panniers on this bicycle, so I may start to look at Marktplaats here, the Dutch version of Ebay, for a cheap used pair just to carry water, some fruit and energy bars. I'm kinda liking the simplicity of it all.
I am considering putting a small bike rack on the back of the sidecar outfit to carry a bicycle full-time as I travel, and incorporate it into my RTW as an alternative form of simple, cheap independent travel and also as a fitness medium. 

Willibrordus Church in Bakel.

Have the day of your choice,


Coming next week on WherethehellisMurph: Part III of my Mobec Duo-Drive BMW Sidecar Conversion:


Brady Steffl said...


First off, I'm looking forward to seeing your new rig all put together. That looks like one fun built.

After several thousand miles I can understand why you would want to bring a bicycle on your travels. There is so much work in getting up and off of a motorcycle, plus the noise. When you bed down in some park you want to get off and see, quiet. It also gives you the opportunity to pop off and shoot photos. If I could bring a couple of things along on a motorbike, one would be a bicycle, the other would be a fishing rod. There have been some amazing places, and I wish I could have just sat with a line in the water.

Behind Bars

IRISH Murph said...

Hi Brady,
Yes, I honestly never thought it would get to this point where I would be close to building an outfit I only ever saw others ride and went to bed dreaming about.
And you obviously are a nature person, a bicycle in the right setting like the bicycle roads here in the Netherlands is about as peaceful and enjoyable as it get for me. And you're so right, after a day or a week riding to my destination, what better way to wind down AND explore than a bicycle ride.
You've also given me an idea about a fishing rod, a great piece of kit.