Stage 26 starts just over the (old) border in East Germany at Oebisfelde. The stage is largely flat but with some minor lumps in the road at miles four, seven, eleven and seventeen: Indeed from seventeen miles, the route descends all the way to twenty one miles before presenting a testing finish up to the finish. The route is much more remote than of late, with only Mieste and Gardelegen offering significantly sized towns: however there are villages aplenty and they take centre stage in the preview.
The rollout hangs a left out of Weddendorf after half a mile before passing by the small communities of Niendorf (three miles), Bergfriede (four miles) and Taterburg (five miles). Between Bergfriede and Taterburg, route 188 crosses over the Mittellandkanal (again), the Mittlegraben canal, the Ohre canal and the Wilhelms canal: indeed the whole landscape is covered in canals and waterways in this part of Germany.
Beyond Taterburg, the road meanders left and right, and passes through Am Bahnhof (seven miles), Miesterhorst and Birkhorst either side of eight miles then Kolonie Lenz at nine miles. Ahead of Kolonie Lenz, the highway also crosses the Friedrichs canal.
At ten miles, the route arrives on the western approach to Mieste where the road hangs a left and effectively becomes a clockwise ring road around the northern side of the town, emerging to resume a north easterly tack at thirteen miles towards Solpke (fifteen miles) and Weteritz (seventeen miles).
The next major landmark is Gardelegen and just as at Mieste, route 188 hangs a looping clockwise left around the northern side of the town: however on the approach, at eighteen miles, the road passes by Gardelegen Airport, which is also the highest point on the stage. The Milde river flows south to north through Gardelegen and the road descends a hundred feet to cross it at the northern most part of the ring road. The river is also the lowest elevation on the stage by a long way.
Away from the water, the remaining four miles are lumpy and uphill, through Kloster Neuendorf at twenty three miles ahead of the uphill finish approaching Javenitz.
Distance: 25 miles / 40 kilometres
Ascent: 341 feet / 104 metres
RGT Magic Road: hfrpDrwNykTd
Max elevation: 586 ft
Min elevation: 480 ft
Total climbing: 315 ft
Total descent: -321 ft
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