Just a few days before the commencement of Sea Level Testing, members of the Xtreme Everest 2 logistics team packed their bags, picked up a new (shorter) van from Acrobat Vehicle Rental, who kindly loan their vans to us at no charge, and hit the road. After a short drive from London and a stay overnight at Harwich, they boarded the 09:00 Stena Britannica ferry to Hook of Holland.
As Stena Line are a sponsor of Xtreme Everest 2, the team thought they would take advantage of the free passage provided and see what else Stena Line could do for them. After a chat with one of the stewards on board, arrangements were made to go up and meet the Captain on the bridge of the ferry.
During this bridge visit, the Captain gave us a tour of the controls that he uses to direct the ferry on its correct course. The equipment was fascinating and as we were up on the bridge we could see one of the many large off-shore wind farms marked on the Captain's chart.
After this eventful journey, we docked in Hook at around 17:00 local time. Then followed a 3 hour drive to Groningen in the North of the country. An overnight stay in a hotel just outside the city was followed by a short drive to the headquarters of Lode B.V on Friday morning.
The Xtreme Everest 2 team were greeted at Lode by Bert van der Beek, International Service Coordinator and Ton Rademaker, Managing Director, who both helped load the 9 refurbished Corival bikes into the van. The refurbishment was done to a brilliant standard and we are grateful for the heavy discount that Lode gave us. A quick drink and chat followed the loading, before the XE2 team had to depart and drive the 3 hours back to Hook in order to catch the ferry home.
The team arrived back in London at around 22:00 on Friday evening and unloaded all but two of the bikes into their store at the Archway campus. The final two bikes were moved into the Xtreme Everest 2 van which was driven to The London Clinic on Saturday morning to drop off the bikes just in time for our run though.
All in all, a very successful journey to Lode, and many thanks must go to Captain Holmes, On Board Services Manager Paul Woods and Steward Karl Lee from Stena Line for organising the bridge visit. Thanks must also go to Ton, Bert and their team from Lode for being so welcoming and for refurbishing the bikes so quickly.
To see images of the journey, click on the gallery below.