8bar gravel team with their bikes Shortly after 7:00 am the bikes were ready, loaded with almost everything we would need for the next 4-5 days. Everything had been stowed away neatly or stuffed with emphasis into the bike packing bags and strapped down. The excitement rose. Was the tire pressure right? Was the chain sufficiently oiled? Quickly check again! Were all technical devices enough loaded and the routes prepared for the navigation system? Okay? Then we could start! It was the first Saturday in August 2020 when we, Wiebke and Juliane, part of the still quite young 8bar Gravel Team* (more details below), got on our bikes together with friends and headed off to the meeting point, the starting point of Holy Gravel 2020. This is our travel report, written from Juliane’s perspective.

Holy Gravel 2020 – A bikepacking adventure

The Holy Gravel is a self-supported ride through the German North on gravel and forest roads mixed with paved lanes and road sections. Numerous paths and hiking trails with crisp climbs challenge the legs and technical cycling skills in the most entertaining way. The event took place for the first time in October 2019 in very harsh weather conditions and should now be reissued as a summer edition. Start and after a long, winding route through Schleswig-Holstein, end of the tour is in Hamburg. The Holy Gravel is not a race, but a gravel ride with like-minded people who are on the same track. This route was sent in advance by e-mail to all registered persons. During the trip we could decide whether it should be the shorter, almost 555km long or the long, approx. 740km track with a detour to the Baltic Sea island Fehmarn.


Wiebke and I had, besides a tent and other sleeping equipment, all things in our bikepacking bags, which we had strapped directly to the bike. Wiebke is riding an 8bar Bikes MITTE v2 in silver polished raw with 2×10 Shimano GRX parts, Schwalbe G-One Ultrabite in 40 mm width and DT Swiss G1800 rims. My gravelbike is an 8bar Bikes MITTE Steel v2 in deep sea blue metallic with 2×11 Shimano GRX parts, Schwalbe G-One Bite tires in 2″ and DT Swiss GR1600 rims. With this equipment we were well prepared for the coming days at Holy Gravel 2020.