Europe - 9 Countries in 10 Days (From England to the Alps and Back)

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Krime, Mar 9, 2013.

  1. G-Mac

    G-Mac Been here awhile

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    Beautiful girl Beautiful bike Beautiful countryside, what more could you ask for. Fantastic RR guys.
    #81
  2. pamplonika

    pamplonika Spritfresser

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    Sauerland, Germany
    “as</SPAN> we learned waterproof gloves are not all that 'waterproof' at the end of a rainy day”


    hahahaha,:rofl I know. Waterproof is the only water no longer be let out.




    Last year I was in Lux and was pleasantly surprised. Good roads, great people and a lot of forest, some drinks are not negligible.
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    #82
  3. C-Stain

    C-Stain Long timer

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    :clap:clap:clap

    Wow! Keep it coming!

    Mrs. Stain and I are saving for a European Moto-Tour and your shots are some great inspiration! Can't wait to see the rest!

    C.
    #83
  4. Ninjaalentejano

    Ninjaalentejano Adventurer

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    Great RR, congrats! :clap
    You were very near the Nurburgring, weren´t tempted to go for a lap?
    #84
  5. Wildman

    Wildman In my castle

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    Great vids Erik.

    Only one improvement needed .... needs more Megan! :D

    Keep it coming.
    #85
  6. henryporter

    henryporter Adventurer

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    Northern Wisconsin
    Krime, really great stuff, enjoying the hell out of it. Before you sign off on this finally, would you be put out by posting some of the costs involved (bike rental), how you got the gear (helmets, rain gear, etc.), if it was acquired there, did you bring it over with you, that kind of thing? I'm in the planning stage of a Scotland to Sicily trip and any info will be helpful. hp
    #86
  7. g®eg

    g®eg Canadian living in exile

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    very cool report! :clap
    I'm gonna have to wait til I get home to check out the videos.. our internet at work is crap

    looks like we were there at almost the same time as you guys last year :thumb
    #87
  8. Krime

    Krime Been here awhile

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    Excellent, thanks all. Day 9 coming tomorrow... just not enough hours in the day!

    Absolutely! It was part of the original plan (as was the Mosel region) but both of them had to go... just not enough time. All the more reason to do another trip like this soon.

    Duly noted! :D

    No problem at all, I'll be sure to post the details after wrapping up day 10.

    Thanks Greg. Had a quick look at your route and it looks incredible - look forward to reading the full report soon.
    #88
  9. dannyboy57

    dannyboy57 n00b

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    I second that motion.

    Great pics, thanks for sharing.
    #89
  10. Natnewt

    Natnewt Been here awhile

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    Can I have he original res?
    #90
  11. Krime

    Krime Been here awhile

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    To make a long story short... eventually! I only have this resolution at the moment, I'll need to redo the original res images so they look the same. Just PM me the shot you'd like and I'll send it through when I get the original shots done. :D
    #91
  12. Krime

    Krime Been here awhile

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    Day 9: Bouillon, Belgium to Calais, France

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    Our second last day of the trip, and the end is nearing far too fast.

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    Our morning view from the hotel room window.

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    Starting the morning visiting the 10th century castle across the way.

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    Inside.

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    Looking from one end to the other.

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    The view of Bouillon from the castle.

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    The start of a nice forest run in Mirwart - heading towards La Roche-en-Ardenne.

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    Arriving in La Roche-en-Ardenne, we stop at a restaurant for some familiar Belgium beer and lunch.

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    We walk over to our bike which is now surrounded by 3 beautiful vintage bikes.... the oldest of which is a FN (Fabrique Nationale) from 1910!

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    Country names are plated on the gas tank.

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    The saying that it's not about the journey, but the people you meet along the way, has never rang truer than this moment. As I'm admiring this beautiful machine, an older gentleman approaches me, introduces himself as Ron and hands me a torn piece of paper with the handwritten note 'oldblokeonabike.com'. We'd chat for a while as a crowd begins to surround us. He's a 69 year old Aussie that's nearing the end of his journey from Nepal to Belgium on his 103 year old machine! He explains the countries plated on the gas tank were the original countries visited, starting in Belgium where the bike was built. He was doing the same trip, on the same bike, MANY years later&#8230; but this time in reverse! I'll never forget his energy for life as we conversed... it was contagious - the stories of his riding adventures over the years were inspirational.

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    Still in complete awe by this point, we say farewell. Push starting his bike, he runs alongside it throwing his leg over the saddle as the engine fires up with a loud bang.

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    He passes between his two awaiting 'guardians' who follow suit behind, making an incredibly beautiful and memorable exit that will stick with me for a very long time&#8230; Moments like this explain why I love to ride better than any words ever could. Cheers Ron!

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    Arriving in Namur, the last Belgium town before we hit the highway for a 250km ride to Calais, France for the night.

    We'd arrive at our hotel in Calais at 10pm. 450km of riding today, and what an experience it had been. We'd be off the next morning to catch the train to Folkestone, UK.


    Day 9 riding video:

    #92
  13. Shaggie

    Shaggie Unseen University

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    yo' Krime

    Loving the RR and pics and video

    awesome

    R E S P E C T
    #93
  14. Shaggie

    Shaggie Unseen University

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    PS dont forget to update vid music list please:evil
    #94
  15. roadholder

    roadholder Long timer

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    That's a pretty amazing trip considering the age if the bike. Many of us with modern classics fret over taking an older bike on all but the shortest of trips! :lol3

    Great rider report!
    #95
  16. Krime

    Krime Been here awhile

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    Day 10: Calais, France to Bournemouth, UK

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    It was hard to except that the trip was coming to an end. Today would be our last day... The very next morning Megan would be flying home to Canada and I'd be back at work.

    After breakfast, we'd set out to visit the Calais market just up the street from our hotel. We'd get back and I'd hook up our loaded top and side cases to the bike for the last time.

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    A 15 minute ride to the Euro Tunnel. As we're waiting in line for the go ahead to approach the train, we meet a few other riders who are returning home to the UK from their own adventures.

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    A very cool experience riding inside the train. The travel time was incredibly fast at 30 minutes and I was far less sea sick. :D

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    Riding through the typical roads along the coast from Hastings towards Brighton. Soon after getting off the train I exit the first roundabout as usual. An approaching oncoming car starts to frantically flash its headlights... I'm on the wrong side of the road! A very tricky thing to get used to after 3000km on the right side of the road. :D

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    Doing the honours of reaching the 50,000 mile mark on the bike. Could have fooled me, it was running like new.

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    A short stop to walk along the beach on our way to Brighton.

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    Stopping for lunch in Brighton. Greek beer in England? Sure why not, I'd had my fill of English beer over the last 2 and a half months. :D

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    Entering the New Forest on our way to Bournemouth. I very cool place where wild horses, cows, etc. freely roam the land (and streets at time).

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    Stopping by the cows that had casually blocked off traffic as they crossed the road - definitely not the roads to travel too fast on, you never know what could be around the next bend.

    Soon after we'd arrive in Bournemouth on time at 7pm. Paul (owner of Bournemouth Motorcycle hire) was great to drop us off at the train station. We'd grab a gas station dinner (wine and ham sandwiches) for the 2+ hour train ride back to London.

    We were exhausted&#8230; but in a really good kind of way. As I reached into my pocket I pulled out the torn sheet of paper from the day before...

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    ...reminding me of the many incredible experiences along the way. This had, without a doubt, been the best ride of my life so far.

    Until next time... :D


    Day 10 riding video:
    The last day of an incredible ride.

    #96
  17. Krime

    Krime Been here awhile

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    Hope you've all enjoyed the ride. Looking back on the trip, I thought I'd put together a list of the top things I learned from this experience:

    - My heart is still in the Alps, and I have to go back and get it. :D

    - I loved the Stelvio pass, but I LOVED (even more) the unexpected passes noone was talking about.

    - When you're on a trip like this, don't worry too much about the weather - Going into it I was worried about the rain… by the end of it I realized it made the experience that much more memorable.

    - You don't feel the cold the same way when you're having fun.

    - In terms of a vacation, it's demanding at times with not much downtime for rest, but the rewards are far greater than any traditional vacation.

    - You can't put a dollar amount on this kind of experience - rentals… accommodations... food… Switzerland… Sure it adds up quick, but you never look back in regret of having spent too much money on an adventure like this. Well, at least I didn't. :D

    - The people you meet and the stories shared along the way make for incredible memories.

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    Ron and I in La-Roche-en-Ardenne on Day 9

    - Traveling alone is awesome in its own right, but being able to share the experience with someone was amazing. I'm a lucky guy to have a women that gets just about as excited as I do when doing a bike adventure like this.
    #97
  18. Dieselpwr

    Dieselpwr Been here awhile

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    Amazing RR. Thanks for sharing.
    #98
  19. C-Stain

    C-Stain Long timer

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    Awesome report. Thanks so much for sharing. I showed your pics to Mrs Stain and she's even more jazzed about a European Adventure of our own.

    :thumb
    #99
  20. pamplonika

    pamplonika Spritfresser

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    :clap thank`s for this RR.