My off road trip in the Land of Eagle

Discussion in 'Epic Rides' started by Dr LC8, Oct 21, 2012.

  1. Dr LC8

    Dr LC8 ...soon or later

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2005
    Oddometer:
    970
    Location:
    Manchester...but from Rome!
    Hi Guys,

    Last June, as per yearly tradition:norton, my friends and I set for our 8 days off road trip. Since the situation in North Africa hasn’t been the best over last couple of years:war we decided to go for an alternative destination: Albania the Land of Eagle!:eek1
    None of us had been there except for one.
    The core of the group was the same as usual, but this year it was reinforced by some late but first class additions for sympathy:poser, spirit of adaption:bow…and certainly some of them for off road skills:muutt.

    So try to put together 7 Italians (of which: one sold to Albanian Mafia:gun1, one from Milan-if he can be called Italian!-who do marketing development for Yamaha, rides KTM twins and has settled in the land of freedom and joints and other drugs:bubba…and one sold to the British Crown :queenie ), two Dutch who has never put a wheel of road and one that self defines: “half Italian, half Dutch, totally confused and in the wrong country for the right answer […] the product of a clash of Europe’s extremes : Latin:velvt versus Germanic:viking, hot headed:*sip* versus easy:jkam…” Ducati versus BMW ending for getting rid of both ☺

    So see what happen…



    Some of us set from Rome by bike to make Bari to catch a ferry across the Adriatic sea, riding through the south Italian central Appennini. Others who don’t have enough strength brought their bikes down to Bari on a trailer…two more flew directly to Tirana from Amsterdam shipping their bikes on a truck.
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    The bikes
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    The lads
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    The first day we went wrong! Following tracks downloaded from the web and this guy directions…
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    …we end up in a narrow stony path that…wasn’t really what we were looking for our first day!
    David
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    Marco
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    Erik
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    Giovanni
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    Marco and Erik
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    Fabrizio
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    …at least the dinner was nice!
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    The second day we left Tirana heading west through the mountains. This was a nice stone street with great views
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    When we thought we would have died of starvation we meet this young…
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    …healthy lad…
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    …who took as to his mate for a basic lunch by the lake…
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    From there we followed a stunning but bloody narrow canyon
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    Up to reaching this little village on the side of the canyon…where this little kids were amused by the bikes.
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    That night, after having lost E&E (The Yamahas) along a dark unpaved street and having Alessandro riding on his rim due to a puncture we finally made we arrived to Berat. The following morning we went up to the top of the hill visit the old town
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    Leaving Berat we ahead off towards south looking for the Ottoman old Bridges. To reach the bridge there were several cool river crossing to take
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    And here you are the Bridge
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    Stop for some food (usual chicken and chips)
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    The following day we end up doing one of the special stage of the Rally of Albania…along with the actual rally. Albanian organization ☺
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    …and then I understood that some times sunglasses might confuse you on the state and nature of the terrain ☹
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    The following day we visited the Greek (and subsequently Roman) Archeological site of Butrint in the amazing bay which takes name from it.
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    And then, as promised from the beginning of the trip…seeking for a beach to chill for a whole afternoon after some nice fresh fish…but at usual took some trails to get there…
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    …getting there…
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    The chilled evening and the sunset by the see wasn’t bad at all!
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    The following day we start our rise back towards north following the coast. We aimed to get back to Durres to catch our ferry that night. A long stretch we some great views…
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    So when we reached Valone we pulled onto the beach for trip closure in perfect Dakar style…
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    However also the old XT’s clutch decided that its trip was over!
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    Still we managed to get out of the beach pulling for some few kms…
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    …until a better solution came across…
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    From there on there were just some 160 kms of boring, straight, bumpy and life threatening tarmac road to get us to the pier where a ferry would have take us to Bari in Italy. Bari to Roma was a 6 hours motorway journey.
    E&E left the bikes to a support truck that followed the Rally and was going back to Holland.

    Despite sadly started with David having to leave, the whole trip was great.
    Someone who was with us for the first time said: “it has been the most intense week of my life…but definitively one of the best”!

    Plans for this coming year trip are in the pot…


    Ciao

    Nic
    #1
  2. Gazz

    Gazz In a rut

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2007
    Oddometer:
    531
    Location:
    Stourbridge, UK
    Brilliant Nic, just brilliant. What a great looking country.
    #2
  3. GB

    GB . Administrator

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2002
    Oddometer:
    57,501
    Location:
    Toronto
    Fantastic ride and pics!! thanks for sharing :thumb
    #3
  4. Louisdut

    Louisdut Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2008
    Oddometer:
    640
    Location:
    Worcestershire UK
    Great stuff :thumb

    Your pictures are great looks like you all had a great time :clap

    We are just in the planning stage of a trip down to Albania for this September (1x Hp2 & 3x Ktm 690’s) got loads of unpaved roads planned so far

    Louis
    #4
  5. Dr LC8

    Dr LC8 ...soon or later

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2005
    Oddometer:
    970
    Location:
    Manchester...but from Rome!
    PM if you need any track or other info.

    Ciao

    Nic
    #5
  6. Louisdut

    Louisdut Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2008
    Oddometer:
    640
    Location:
    Worcestershire UK
    PM sent

    Cheers

    Louis
    #6