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Bike in Dalsland

Photographer: François Struzik

Confessions of a Belgian cyclist

  • François Struzik

"Something about the nature and the light captivated me. A place to escape from the rat race and at the same time a place to be active." The Belgian cycling enthusiast François Struzik has been biking in Dalsland for ten years and he is constantly on the move and planning his next adventure.

Winding gravel roads that are sometimes hilly. Down in hollows and up on ridges. Who knows what waits over the next crest? A look at the map tells me there is a lake a nice distance from my road. I ride deep into the stillness of nature. Stop at the edge of the lake to explore the area. A long time later I’ve drunk a cup of coffee, made from water from the lake, picked a handful of blueberries, had a dip and I’m ready to cycle again. With silence as my only company I get back on the bike as I think to myself, “this is why I love Dalsland”.

Photographer: François Struzik

"It’s like cycling in a gigantic art gallery.”

My love for Dalsland started the first time I sat foot here about 10 years ago. Something about the nature and the light captivated me. For me, Dalsland became a place to escape from the rat race and at the same time a place to be active. I could walk for hours here, paddle in the lakes or set off on my bike along countless roads.

Photographer: François Struzik

Gravel roads

I grew up in Belgium and for someone from the “Continent” I was surprised at how much of the Swedish rural road network was made up of gravel roads. You can get on your bike and easily link together towns, remote villages, deep forests and cultural sites. Not to mention all the cosy cafés, which are worth their weight in gold during the longer rides.

Photographer: François Struzik

What the road has to offer

The bike takes med where I want to go and I’m always planning for my next cycling adventure. I’ve still got lots of roads and forests to discover. I usually pack to be out for the whole day, start at a place I don’t know much about and see what the road has to offer. It is rare that I know in advance what is waiting round the next bend. That means that no two rides are the same.

I hope we meet on the road!
// François Struzik

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