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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old Jul 19th, 2007, 7:17 am Thread Starter
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Smile the Alps again

As scheduled we left home on Sunday, the 1st of July. As half of the Moscovites were on their dachas(countryside cottages) and Turkish beaches and a good portion were sleeping after party night, we were lucky to escape traffic jams and in a very relaxed manner came to Polish border 10 hrs later. 20 min for border formalities(bikers go without queueing) and we sat down in a cosy restaurant for the lunch. Three bikes with POL reg.plates arrived - a GW, a ST1300 and one RT. They saw our RUS sticker and came to make enquiry about the border - the guys were heading to Kazakhstan/Alma-Ata via Moscow. Unbelievable optimism for the very bikes - they had not only any idea about "Long way round" :-)) but they had never crossed their eastern border! Wished them safe return :-)) We stoped over night in a small town 150 km from the border and the next day crossed Poland and Checks Republic and dropped at a small hotel in Austria some 50 km north from Vienna. The hotel owner proudly had a nice pic of his LT on Sella Pass on the wall. Good beer was served too:-))
The next day we had an easy ride along the Danube river(Romantic strasse) and some hills on the left side - easy narrow roads, empty and scenic. Was a pleasure to ride them. The weather was sunny but not hot like in Poland the day before(+35C) so we continued south avoiding autobahns. And got even more pleasure. Got a dilemma then - to stop for the night as normally kitchens were closed byt 9 p.m. or to take an autobahn and to reach Italy in few hours. Decided to stay and to do the same style the next day - the first mistake :-)) As we dropped at the first hotel near the road and parked the bike in the garage( It was never left outside fo overnight sitting during the trip) - then a thunderstorm started and it turned out than there was no restaurant at the hotel nor in the village. The hotel owner, an old biker, offered some sandwiches and beer so made us happy. We went to sleep being sure that so heavy raim had to stop by the morning :-)) Ha! Next morning and complete next day it was raining like in the tropics. Just the tropical rain should have stopped after half an hour but that one not. So we had about 7 hours of storm riding on the autobahn at +10C, my visor was completely blocked by fog and I had to move it into the city position from the left side and keep the speed of 100-120 km/h maximum. At the end of the day I had running nose and red eyes so we stopped in Villach near Italian border because of thermal springs there and sauna. But then cold beer neutralized the effect of the sauna - or maybe it was not enough of beer :-)) - so the next morning I was almost completely ruined. But we left for Italy again avoiding autobahn and entered Dolomite region via Cortina d'Ampezzo. Reached Arabba via Tre Croce and Passo Falzarego and stopped there for a night. Very nice hotel with unforgettable kitchen and views. + 6C on the tops of the passes.
The next day was Friday so we had to ride to Garmisch to join the BMW Days happening.
Taking into account my health conditions, we did several passes around Arabba including Sella and Pordoi and some 4 or 5 more and decided not to ride to Stelvio which would give us another 250 km that day. And arrived to our pre-booked(in May) hotel in Garmisch. Uff! Two days of rest! The weather was nice - +24C and dry on Saturday and even more on Sunday but pouring rain in the afternoon. Had Baehr intercom installed on Saturday and ZTechnic V-Stream shield. Test rode the bike and liked both. But Sunday morning came the turn of my better half for the health troubles - same symptoms. So we had to stay one more night and Monday morning left for Munich, BMW Motorrad Zentrum, to change the oil, to buy heated vests(there was no Small size in Garmisch) and to install one more power outlet on my bike. Finally only the oil was changed. There was a socket avaliable at stock but no harness. And no small size - so had to buy Medium for my wife. Same torrential rainstorm with strong wind.Cold. Left for the Rhein valley and did some km on autobahn before overnight stop in a small town named Kitzigen.
The next day the weather improved - there was some showers but with sunbreaks and not so cold. And I experienced a high idle issue and BBS in Wiesbaden. Can you imagine how upset I was?! But continued out trip. The roads along the Rhein river and a bit aside were awesome! Special thanks to Michael(aka ratemut) for the reccomendations. We slept one night on Rhein and one on Mosel and had fantastic rides along both. The Mosel valley I liked even more as it is more cozy with a lot of bridges so you can ride both side crossing the river almost in every village. And because of the time for mass vacations in Europe had not yet come the roads were empty. That was the best compensation for the rain :-))
We had rooms on the rivers banks with river views and it was great!
pics:
#1 - Danube in Austria
#2 - passo Gardena
#3 - paso Sella
#4 - a hairpin in Sella
#5 - Dolomite
To be continued...
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Take care!

'06 K1200GT Blue (sold)
'09 F800GS Grey
'07 F800ST Blue - wife's(sold)
'09 F650GS Blue - wife's

Last edited by easyman05; Jul 19th, 2007 at 11:50 am.
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old Jul 19th, 2007, 12:00 pm Thread Starter
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some more pics here:
1. hills near Danube
2. near Rhein
3. a hairpin in Dolomites
4. view from our hotel room in Arabba
5. Baehr intercom installation - they made special mounting plate.
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Take care!

'06 K1200GT Blue (sold)
'09 F800GS Grey
'07 F800ST Blue - wife's(sold)
'09 F650GS Blue - wife's
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old Jul 19th, 2007, 2:22 pm
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Well I certainly envy you the roads over there. If I search real hard I can fine ONE road with switchbacks on it and it only has a few. Heck, heading East from Here there are next to no corners of any kind.

Looks like you may have been close to the Tour de France. Haven't caught much over the past couple of days of stage 9 was pretty exciting (as was 8). I've got 8+ hours taped at home for yesterday and today's stages - I'll likley have to do a lot of fast forwarding.
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old Jul 19th, 2007, 2:49 pm Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BCDon
Well I certainly envy you the roads over there. If I search real hard I can fine ONE road with switchbacks on it and it only has a few. Heck, heading East from Here there are next to no corners of any kind.

Looks like you may have been close to the Tour de France. Haven't caught much over the past couple of days of stage 9 was pretty exciting (as was 8). I've got 8+ hours taped at home for yesterday and today's stages - I'll likley have to do a lot of fast forwarding.

Same here, Don. This is why we ride to the Alps - for the curves.
I had to cancel my French part of the trip because of TdF - just was not sure where it was in order not to mix up with them. It would be impossible to find a hotel room in vicinity. And traffic should be re-routed or restricted.
Though we were just 50 km from Colmar and Col de St.Marie, col de Bonne Homme etc.

Take care!

'06 K1200GT Blue (sold)
'09 F800GS Grey
'07 F800ST Blue - wife's(sold)
'09 F650GS Blue - wife's
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