so now it is time to go home to the real world (or at least to the reality that pays for trips like this).
we opt for the shuttle to the airport (we had braved the tram from Zurich main station on the way to the hotel).
CHF 30 for two coffees and two croissants... ah welcome to the airport prices!
ready to go home? "do you want the truth or a cleverly crafted reply?"
coach bulkhead... so we have a bit of legroom
au revoir / ciao / auf wiedersehen Alps!
the debrief / conclusions.
Michelle loved the F 800 R as much as last year, so that's a big win. I enjoyed riding the F 800 GS a lot more than the R 1200 R I had last year. The baby GS had huge bags, got good gas mileage, and when the road got a bit bumpy (which is rare) the ride was smooth. The seat however is a bit of a plank. I don't recall the R 1200 R's seat being so uncomfortable. That's a very small niggle though. Overall it is a very nice bike!
It comes with the BMW socket next to the key, and I had purchased a 3BR BMW socket to USB plug from RocketMoto
. This worked perfectly for charging up anything USB and also was where I plugged in the GPS. Nice bit of kit.
Renting from Moto Mader is such an easy process. They picked us up from the train, bikes ready to go, and a place to store the stuff we didn't need (duffel bags & fly home clothes, etc). Rental worked out to about $160 / day / bike. We spent about €25 / day each for gas, and hotel (when not in Switzerland) was running about €70 / night for two (or €35 each if you want to look at it that way). We ate quite well, so maybe another €25-30 each / night for dinner.
I'd say if you budgeted between €200 abd €250 / day you'd have a really nice tour!
The Garmin Nuvi 550 works perfectly well in Europe & makes navigation a bit easier. Pre-planning and loading the GPS with some good roads & waypoints certainly helps but isn't necessary.
Our SENA bluetooth communications are really nice as well. They worked flawlessly in the mountains and were invaluable in urban navigation.
A lot of people look at tour companies, and have a great time... I don't have a problem with that at all, except I can't bring myself to spend the money.
My mates will all tell you I am frugal.... I'll leave it at that!
If this report inspires you to do your own Euro Tour then I think that's great. If there's anything you would like to know, routes, GPS files, etc, please feel free to shoot me a mail. I'd be happy to help.
Thanks for reading.
one more thing I forgot.....
if I have a regret about this trip it's that I wanted to get to the area of Pisa & meet TageSK, the inmate here responsible for a lot of the very cool back-roads we traveled in Italy. But, that is OK, that just means that we will have to try again. On my to-do list is a lunch in his garden. So roll on 2013.