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Old 05-16-2011, 03:16 PM   #16
AlpineGuerrilla OP
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It seems there are a lot of you interested in stealth camping in the Alps. Guess I'll share some experiences with you.

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Originally Posted by Loutre View Post
Are there a lot of people during sommer? or should I wait till next year and go during eastern holidays?
can you legaly sleep with your tent on the border of the road or do you have to pay one of those expensive camping locations?
The "big" and well known passes and the tourist regions of course are pretty crowded in July and the first part of August. I think the best time in the alps is from mid-August to mid-September. But if you're unlucky, the first onset of winter could already be in September. If you're lucky, you'll have a lot of lonesome roads in great scenery with beautiful colors. But it could already get pretty cold on the passes.
Wild camping is technically forbidden, but it depends on the country and the region. I have never been seen by an official, but I guess they're just not looking out for you.
I imagine the bigger "problem" could be the locals if you're camping in their back yard or somewhere near.

Here's the experience I have from about 20-25 overnight stays in the wild so far:
France for instance is pretty laid back, I go as far as to just build up my tent near the road (backroads or something similar of course), nobody seems to mind. Just keep out of the national parks!
Switzerland is also not that big of a problem, but it's more or less difficult to find a good spot. I have asked a farmer once if I could sleep on his field and he denied. But that was just because there was fresh manure on it. He went on to show me a nice place and surprised me with some fresh milk and eggs in the morning, that was fantastic. Anyway, keep away from touristy regions like Lucerne, the Lakes and such.
I've heard some horror stories from Italy with expensive fines ranging to hundreds of Euros, but I can't confirm that.
Camping-wise, Austria and Slovenija are a white spot on my map, sorry.

If I should ever have contact with an official, here's my excuse: "Sorry sir, I was just tired and the campground was full. It was just too unsafe to ride on. I'm really sorry. (puppyface)" Have to test that sometime.

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Originally Posted by daveg View Post
I wonder what the local response would be if they found you. How laid back are the swiss with property? I know alot of places in Texas the land owners would be pissed.


That's propably my worst choice for a place to stealth camp so far (it's in Italy tho). At about 6 AM I woke up to the sound of a tractor driving past me. I immediately got up and packed my shit. A few minutes later, the farmer came bake and watered the vine a few meters away. I just smiled and waved to him and he did the same. It was propably luck that he did not seem to mind, I can imagine not every farmer likes having people in his vine! It would have propably been more of a problem in Switzerland. I was just tired, it was getting dark and there was no better place around. You should be more cautious than I was. ;-) Generally speaking, you should be fine with common sense and the usual stealth camping practices.

Oh, one last thing could be of importance, especially to the US peeps here: don't ride to spots on paths that are banned for motorised traffic. That could be more of an issue than your tent.
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Old 05-20-2011, 12:57 PM   #17
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Those were my favourite camp sites so far:

Camping at the end of the road in Valle Onsernone. The stream marks the border to Italy. On the other side of it is an abandoned hotel with a still intact thermal spring. That's my buddy and behind him on the right is my old mule, a Honda CM 125 C.




Camping on the Julierpass last August.




This is above Walensee and the spot where the farmer brought us breakfast the other day.

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Old 05-21-2011, 08:04 AM   #18
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Ok, I finally finished the promised video of my tour. I tried to mix different perspectives, pictures and timelapses together, hope you like it.

First, there's a scary clip when a KTM rider couldn't stay on his side of the road.




And the full movie here:

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Old 05-21-2011, 03:35 PM   #19
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Great video!!
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Old 05-21-2011, 08:53 PM   #20
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Amazing roads...

You have a little slice of heaven to ride in there my friend. Here in Northern California is not bad but the grass is always greener on your side of the pond. Although that video of the biker on your side of the motorway leaves something to be desired. I bet your heart skipped a couple of beats with that.

Thanks for sharing.
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Old 05-23-2011, 02:39 PM   #21
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Glad you liked the video. The Alps may be great to ride on the street, but you won't get much offroading here. As far as I'm concerned, you have dirtbiking heaven over there. But as you say, the grass is always greener on the other side (I'm dreaming of riding in the US on all your Singletracks and gravel roads)

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Although that video of the biker on your side of the motorway leaves something to be desired. I bet your heart skipped a couple of beats with that.
It was just a huge WTF moment. I only realized what happened when it was over. Good thing we have reflexes. I needed more than one smoke after that.
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Old 07-05-2011, 03:55 PM   #22
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Thanks for the awesome pics and comments on camping! Interesting stuff:)
Love the slo-mo in the vid - shot at 60fps?

Id like to ride in the alps more - all just a question of time and money. Its not too far from Berlin - but a quick weekend isnt really worth the boring ride up and down.

Ill be looking at your routes, Im about to embark on a trip around the alps for a good 10 days or so. Maybe we will cross paths?

Keep it up!
-Ollie
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Old 07-05-2011, 04:16 PM   #23
E-man
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Great pictures and the video gave me a little heart stopper...

Great book too!!
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Old 07-12-2011, 02:02 PM   #24
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Most of the clips are captured in 60fps. Even if played in 30fps the image is smoother. Plus you can always make a slow-mo if an asshat crosses your way.

We'll have to cross paths later, as I'm currently on a trip in Norway. Greetings from Tana Bru.
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Old 08-09-2011, 02:04 PM   #25
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Wow the guy with the KTM RC8 almost hit you.... what a f..king dumb !!!!

Very nice picture by the way
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Old 08-09-2011, 02:55 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlpineGuerrilla View Post
I've heard some horror stories from Italy with expensive fines ranging to hundreds of Euros, but I can't confirm that.
First, good report and really nice video.

Second, frankly , never heard anything about in Italy, fines for speeding or similar ok, but for "wild camping" not... seems also highly unlikely, apart for people that set up full camp on a beach for a week...

The overnight "alpine bivouac" is allowed even in national parks.

A couple of years ago a group of friends , transversing center Italy offroad stopped near a farm for overnighting , asking the permission to an old lady... after an hour a police car arrived : agents were curious to see who were the "vicious tent salesmen" that were bothering the old lady.
The lady's hearing was no good ...

It ended with a collective laugh and some hints from the police regarding trails further on...
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Old 08-10-2011, 06:27 PM   #27
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Great video and RR !! Thanks for all the info also. Too bad all you have there are straight, wide roads !!! Ride safe and thanks again for sharing
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Old 08-11-2011, 02:06 AM   #28
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Thanks to everyone watching it. Reached 1000 klicks. New video and report of a 4 week trip coming soon.


Quote:
Originally Posted by GiorgioXT View Post
A couple of years ago a group of friends , transversing center Italy offroad stopped near a farm for overnighting , asking the permission to an old lady... after an hour a police car arrived : agents were curious to see who were the "vicious tent salesmen" that were bothering the old lady.
The lady's hearing was no good ...

It ended with a collective laugh and some hints from the police regarding trails further on...
Great anectode, I have to remember this one.

It depends on where you are in Italy. In highly touristic regions e.g. around Lake Garda it's difficult. But like you say, for one night and with the usual stealth camping practices it really shouldn't be a problem.
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Old 12-10-2012, 01:14 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlpineGuerrilla View Post
Hello folks


Bikers (engine or not) get inside an extra wagon for the 10 minute ride.


Cheers
I always wondered what they did with the bikes on that thing. Surely they don't make you sit on your bike all the way through the tunnel. That would be... unpleasant. I have much love for the beautiful Swiss trains.

Dad grew up in Binningen, went to HG, godfather was a pastor at the Muenster until he retired a few years ago. Mom grew up in Aigle. I spent almost every summer from age 1 to 20 in either Aigle, Binningen, or Crans-Montana, mostly Crans-Montana. I wish I could afford to ship my bike over there for a trip through the Alps. And to convince the wife to let me off on my own!

Very jealous, sir.
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Old 12-11-2012, 05:08 AM   #30
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Great RR!

Don' mind about the italian traffic. Just try to get used and be careful
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