Photos from my trip to the Kingdom of Denmark in 2001.
What is the most dangerous form of wildlife in Denmark?
- Sharks - don't have them
- Snakes - none
- Spiders - a few, not dangerous
- Poisonous Mushrooms - OK, granted there are some, but very few fatalities result
- Poisonous lizards - you're kidding!
The answer folks is - the bicycle!
Yes, the humble bicycle. I nearly became a casualty myself the first few days. I was on the sidewalk when ring ring! whoooosh! With a roar somewhat less than that of an F-16 a bicycle whizzed by my elbow.
Could have been nasty, I tell you!
You see in Australia bicycles are an endangered species. If not actually on the endangered list they are at least a despised and hunted animal. Hunted by Australian motorists anyway. Not so in Denmark. There they are revered, almost the national animal. As a matter of fact I never found out what the national animal was... it might as well be the bicycle.
They lounge about in great herds and relentlessly wander the highways and byways. There status is so special that they are allocated their own laneways ..... and ... get this... trails through the forest. It's in the forest where they are in fact the most dangerous. In the town I soon learned to keep my head on a swivel - checking six before altering course on the path. In fact I am convinced that at one time Denmark had two way traffic for pedestrians too. The locals deny this but there are tell tale marking on just about every sidewalk - usually a neatly cobblestoned centerline.
The dangerous Danish sidewalks.
But back to the forest. The problem is that the bikes are so quiet and the forests so free of the nasty bumps nature usually provides to keep these animals out, that the firest bicycle can build up terrific speed. Horses you can hear - yes there are special horse trails too - but not these nefarious bikers.