Night spent in “the wild” near Sokółka town didn’t belong to the nicest, I felt cold, sweaty (at evening I had only been able to wash myself with wet tissues, no water at disposal, and was waking often checking the time. It reminded me a bit the Bear Grylls programmes although I at least had a proper tent …) About 4 a.m. I decided it’s enough, packed the tent and started riding north. After a few kilometers of going in the dark, sky in the east began to light up. It was still cold, especially in the lower parts of the road where the morning fog was accumulated.
30 kilometres of almost completely straight road later I reached Dąbrowa Białostocka, a sleepy little town. Just before the town there is windmill built in 1924, but it’s wings are not complete, so it looks rather sad, unfortunately not as the pretty ones I saw in the Netherlands.
Road north from Dąbrowa was much more twisty and picturesque, the area more hilly and … sunny. I crossed Biebrza river and checked a map. Yes, it’s the beginning part of long National Biebrza Park. Here it is not very impressive as Biebrza is quite narrow, but later it becomes Polish Amazon river with its numerous overflow-arms and swamps.
Quite soon I rode into dense, beautifull forest which lasted, lasted and lasted till I came to Augustów. The air was full of great scents as the sun was shining on clear blue sky and it became very hot. I slowed down, it was no use riding fast in such a wonderful surrounding. But eventually I did it, I came to Augustow, a town fantastically located among many lakes. I made a short stop by the first one – Sajno.
From there I rode along Bystry Canal where swans family swam, to the centre of town and from there to Białe Lake.
There I found nice little grass beach and went swimming. What a great feeling – after a tough night and 80 kilometres on a saddle, with about 30 Celsius degrees I felt in water like in paradise. It was at last opportunity to get rid of dirt of the previous day, what a relief. I didn’t want to go out of lake and when I finally did I laid myself on a towel, took out some delicacies I’d bought in Augustów, ate them and sipped a beer (still quite cold) from a can. This happy laziness took a few hours and when it was closer to evening I started to think about a place to pitch the tent. I’d been in Augustów a few years ago with my family and remembered that there is a kind of wild campsite along the bank of lake but I didn’t remember which lake. I guessed it was Białe so I rode along it but soon lake ended and it turned out I was wrong.
I crossed a bridge over old Przewięź lock (part of beautiful Augustowski Canal).
Now I rode along Studzieniczne Lake, after a few kilometers I found what I was looking for. Very nice grass space for tent, in front lake and at back and sides forest, not many other tents or trailers, just enough to feel friendly atmosphere of campside. When sun started to set I admired colors, mainly pink, of sky and water. It was like a fairy-tale.
When I was thinking about going to sleep my neighbour asked me if I’d like to join them at bonfire. I joined with pleasure, they were 2+2 family from a trailer and soon an older couple returning from Baltic states journey joined us and we all spent very nice time chatting, mainly about our travels (recent ones and from the remote past and planned ones). We were sitting around the flickering fire, strangers, but somehow friendly united admiring the nature in this beautiful spot.