From shelter to Strictly Come Dancing (Everyday Adventure in North Jutland, week 4)

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The infrared sauna was one of the things we spoiled ourselves with in Brønderslev swimming pool.

The first thing we did when we came across the municipal border in Brønderslev was to visit Brønderslev swimming pool. Both of us could use a shower and a tour in the swimming pool is one of the ways to get a shower when we don’t have a shower in Turtle. Then we also get exercise, entertainment and a shower all at once.

In Brønderslev swimming pool, there was also a newly opened climbing wall, sun beds in the sun and an infrared sauna we could enjoy. We didn’t leave until the bath master came and said it was time to go for a shower in time before they were closing.

Project spade-foot toad
At that time it was late afternoon and we agreed it was time to look for a place to stay overnight. First we drove around the city and looked for a suitable place to park, but without success. Therefore, Morten found our shelter app and found a shelter site a short drive from Brønderslev, where it looked like we could also park, so we drove immediately.
And it turned out to be true. The shelter site is located in connection with Little Østergaard’s Ecology and is established by the owners of the farm, Gitta and Bjørn.

Gitta came to meet us when we got out on the farm and told the story about how Bjørn once saw a TV show about a small toad, the spade-foot toad that’s protected in Denmark, and recognized it as the toads that lived on the couple’s estate. They have subsequently, with support from rural pools established the shelter site next to the lake so people can come and experience the rare spade-foot toad.

The three shelters are beautifully isolated far away from the road and right next to the lake and yet there’s an organic farm shop right in the backyard. That’s not too bad.
And not only that. There is also a wild boar, pigs, chickens, turkeys, rabbits and dogs to enjoy themselves in the yard.

The shelter is located right next to the lake where the toads are located.

Now that we were at a place with no less than 3 scenic shelters, it was an obvious opportunity to spend the night in one of them instead of in Turtle.
We packed a basket of food, wine, books and a game of UNO, which was to form the basis of a cozy evening down by the shelter.

And it could have been very cozy – if it wasn’t because we suddenly got more and more annoyed at each other during the night.
Yes, that’s life sometimes, and not everything happens as you might have hoped, so our cozy evening in the shelter at the lake ended with Morten making popcorn over the fire and eating them alone, after which he went to bed in Turtle and I stayed alone in the shelter. That’s our cozy night by the lake.

Strictly Come Dancing
The next day, the good mood was fortunately restored and we drove further out in North Jutland. We had come across a poster with the headline “Strictly Come Dancing” in the Rhododendron Park in Brønderslev, where Brønderslev harmonyorchestra and Brønderslev dance association were to entertain. We didn’t have any other plans, so we decided to go there and see what it was. The sun was shining, the event was free and none of us had been to the Rhododendron Park before, which was one of the places we had been recommended to visit.

It was a nice and lovely park, even though we came a little late in the season to see all the rhododendron bushes blooming. Had we been there a month earlier, it would probably have been full of all the colors and then the experience had of course been quite another, but we must do that next time.

Already when we got into the park in the first place, we talked to a man who is in the association “The Friends of the Round Pavillion” and when we showed interest in and asked about the Round Pavilion he asked if we wanted to get a look inside it, cause he had forgotten his phone in there anyway and had to go in and get it. We said yes right away and both got shown and told stories about the building.

We were lucky enough to get a tour of the inside of the Round Pavilion.

After we had said goodbye and thanks for the tour we went to the stage where the ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ event was going to take place. I’m not insulting anyone by saying that Morten and I were clearly the youngest that night! It was obviously an event for seniors, but that didn’t bother us.

Sometimes we laugh at it and call ourselves “the young retirees”, because it’s quite often seniors we meet on our travels. I think it’s related to the fact that it’s often seniors who have time and economy for the same lifestyle as us – and who no longer have other obligations. In this case, it was just because it was an event that most approached that age group.

During most of the event, we kept in the shade and just enjoyed the music from a distance, but when we sensed that the event was soon coming to an end, we got up to the stage and danced a couple of dances together – and as soon as we was finished we were invited by one of the older dance couples to start dancing, cause they really loved it and thought, we would too.

Nature experiences
We like to park in scenic and deserted areas – it’s so wonderful to have the scenery to yourself and wake up to beautiful views and birds singing.
And now that we had just tried the shelter app with succes again after a while not using it, we tried it again.
We found a shelter site far out of a gravel road in Dronninglund Big Forest, right by the ‘Jyske Ås’, and tried to drive out there. We soon found it and agreed to park there. There wasn’t any official parkinglot in connection with the site, but it was possible to park in the side of the dirt road without being in the way, and so we did.

It’s great to park on your own in the wild.

Next morning we drove a little further out into the summer country and shortly after arrived to Dorf Mill. We have a weakness for old mills, so of course we stopped and went to look more closely at the mill.

A little later we agreed that it was time for a bike ride, so we cycled to Voergård Castle, where we went for a walk around the garden and inside the courtyard and enjoyed the beautiful castle and its surroundings.

It was in the afternoon and when the opening hours ended, we sat outside the gate on the grass and ate a late lunch and took a nap before we rode back to Dronninglund Big Forest.
Here we saw signs towards the chapel, the love tree and the trollstone and cycled in that direction. The love tree turned out to be an old beech, where several trunks have grown together into one and after a short break there, we continued towards the Trollstone. We passed a sign saying 100 meters in that direction and we cycled there. We cycled and cycled, but there wasn’t any trollstone in sight. The trail became narrower and more impassable by bike, so we decided to turn around. Possibly we had cycled too far now anyway.
We turned around, cycled back and watched both sides – it had to be there. And, of course, suddenly we saw the stone well up the hill on the right. It had just “hidden” behind some trees and higher up than we had expected. We got off the bikes and climbed up the hill and onto the huge rock.

Despite the size of the stone, we didn’t see it the first time we passed it.

Now we had done well on our bike ride, so we rode back to Turtle, which was still parked at Dorf Mill. We stayed there and started the next day quietly.

Only a little up the day we were ready to continue. We set the direction towards Jerslev when we had seen the advertisements for Jerslev Market, which was this weekend, and thought it was a suitable ending to our week in Brønderslev Municipality.
On the way there we passed a sign with “Self-pick strawberries” and cut the brake immediately and drove in there. It was late in the season and there were not many strawberries left, but we made a good effort and managed to collect two whole trays filled with delicious, red strawberries. That’s simply one of the best things about the Danish summer!

We continued towards Jerslev Market, which was about to start here Friday afternoon. We folded out the camping chairs and folding table in front of Turtle in the parking lot and ate two servings of fresh strawberries with cream and sugar with great satisfaction before entering the Market.

We enjoyed the moody mood at the Market without buying anything – we have no room for much in our home on wheels. And also met Kent and Mette who were inside their awning and mixed a large container of drinks as we walked by. We stopped and looked at their home-built camper, which was behind the caravan and while we were studying it, Kent came out of the awning to show us his masterpiece.
Their plan for the weekend was to meet up with a whole bunch of friends and family at the market and then they would just enjoy the whole weekend with food, drinks and laughter. It sounded like a tremendously good tradition and if we hadn’t had plans in Aalborg that weekend, we had definitely stayed there and had taken part in their festivities.

Freshly picked strawberries with cream and sugar – one of the best things in the Danish summer!

This wasn’t the case this time, cause long time ago we’d said yes to a wedding invitation in Aalborg the next day – it was actually one of the reasons why we were home in Aalborg this summer. And not only that Morten and I were supposed to participate in the wedding – Turtle had indeed got a very important role for the wedding, namely as a wedding car!

So we drove from Jerslev Market to Aalborg, so we could get Turtle decorated for the festivities – and then we must return to Jerslev Market for the festivities there another time.

Thanks for some great experiences Brønderslev Municipality – see you some other time.

Tips for upcoming everyday adventures in Brønderslev Municipality:
We were given the following tips that we didn’t have time to visit, but which we’ll come back and visit some other time – or which some of you might want to explore?

  • Dorf Millfarm (museum farm).
  • Sculpture Biennale 2018 (North Jutland’s largest sculpture exhibition)in and around Dronninglund Art Center.
  • Vildmosemuseum.
  • Asaa Beach/Harbor.
  • The lakemoss.
  • Moltkesvej in Dronninglund, which has been named ‘Residential road of the Year in North Jutland’.

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