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Old 03-12-2013, 10:17 AM   #31
FlagRS
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Originally Posted by dave6253 View Post
Super Report, Krime! I'm loving your photography and the nicely edited videos!
This - yes his photos are very cool and remind me of someone else. What is that effect being used in the photos.

edit: ahh HDR, thanks Scott.

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Old 03-12-2013, 10:53 AM   #32
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Subscribed...Dream Bike, Dream Trip....and the Nice Looking Companion...what's not to like.

Love the HDR pictures.
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Old 03-12-2013, 12:27 PM   #33
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Nice report, and u take some really great pictures, keep them coming!
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Old 03-12-2013, 06:03 PM   #34
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Appreciate the feedback! Great to hear that the videos are also being viewed and enjoyed.

Going through the photos for day 4, I forgot just how many I took! Lots more to come in a bit...
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Old 03-12-2013, 07:51 PM   #35
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Day 4

Day 4: The Alps - Meiringen, Switzerland to Bellano, Italy



Up at 7am... The much anticipate first day through the alps had arrived! Look out the window and it's cloudy... and wet... again. Go online and the weather report for Meiringen is showing a high of a mere 5 degrees for the day! We head downstairs for our breakfast, and the owner greets us with more bad news... the mountain passes had closed overnight due to snow! When I asked when they would reopen, her response was that they may not until next year! Just about the worst thing she could have said at that moment.

Time wasn't on our side - we needed to get to Italy for the night regardless, and our two current options were to take the main highway around the mountains or a train directly through them (both of which involved skipping the passes entirely). Neither appealed to us, so we choose to wait it out. about 3 and half hours later the owner gets word from a friend who owns a hotel on the Furka pass... the passes were just reopened!

We got our things together and hustled out the door for what would be one of the best days of riding I have ever had.



10:30am outside the hotel, ready to hit the Grimsel Pass.



Looking back at an approaching adventurer, heading through the clouds as we begin to climb the Grimsel pass.



Taken about 10 minutes after the last shot - Continuing the climb, the temperature drops to around freezing and the landscape turns white. This would explain the snowplow we'd just passed shortly before.

Visibility would drastically reduce as we continue the climb towards the summit. Wrapping another hairpin the bike slipped on ice for a split second (2:22 in video) - my heart dropped and ears peirced as Megan shrieked through the headset.



After riding over patches of icy snow - white-knuckled trying to keep the bike as straight and smooth on the throttle as possibile - we were relieved to reach the summit with the rubber side still down!



-4 degrees at the summit, we were joined by two cyclists who also needed to be in Italy for the night to catch their flight the next morning.



Looking in the direction of the Furka Pass, next up.



Finishing up the Grimsel pass as riders from Belgium look in the direction we came.



The snow turns to rain... more rain, but we're in good spirits.



Starting the climb up the Furka Pass, looking back at Grimsel.



The view to the right... melting glacier water flows down the mountain. To get a sense of scale, notice the chalet in the top right corner.



Higher up Furka... travelers enjoying the view.



The view with Grimsel still in the distance. Note to self - leave the bike in gear. ;)



Further along, the clouds flowed across the road. Now towards the end of the pass, most of it prior was completely covered in a coat of stark white snow, but with no spot to pull over for pictures, the video would have to do!



Looking off to the right with the mountain in view.



The clouds engulfing the mountain.



Megan was holding up well considering the conditions - wet gloves and freezing temps.



Towards the end of Furka, the sky began to open up.



At the edge of the clouds.



Stopping again to take in the views... the sound of cowbells clanging in the wind would soon be replaced by the sweet sound of a supermotard tearing through the hairpins, leg out and all...



I LOVE Switzerland. A riders paradise!



Onwards we go!



Stopping for some goulash soup.



The view after coming out of a tunnel.



Julier Pass.



Riding the Maloja Pass, we arrived in Italy as the sun was setting.



Houses in the Italian mountains on our way to Bellano for the night (near lake Como).

The temperature in Italy would now be close to 20 degrees! As we rode through the quiet winding streets of Bellano, nerves kicked in as we hadn't had the time to reserve a hotel for the night. We arrived at a dimly lit B&B (Villa Anita) at around 10pm... We knocked on the door a few times before anyone acknowledged. The grandmother (and owner) was surprised to see us and super thrilled to let us know she had one room left, just for us.

We spent the rest of the night by the one open pizzeria by the lake. Thanks to Megan's fluency in Italian, the owners loved us! We hung out with them and family friends until 1am.

Loaded up on wine and pizza we headed back for the deepest sleep of the trip. Next up in tomorrows itinerary would be Stelvio Pass - the road I'd dreamed about riding for the last 10 years.


Day 4 riding video:
Lots of additional mountain pass footage here that I didn't have the chance to capture on my camera. It's a bit of a longer one so grab a drink, get comfy and enjoy.


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Old 03-13-2013, 09:42 AM   #36
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Absolutely amazing. That is such a beautiful part of the world.
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Old 03-13-2013, 10:09 AM   #37
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Originally Posted by Krime View Post
After riding over patches of icy snow - white-knuckled trying to keep the bike as straight and smooth on the throttle as possibile - we were relieved to reach the summit with the rubber side still down!

I'll bet you were! That could have been trouble. Hopefully the worst of it didn't last too long.
Glad you made out OK. Great pics and video.
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Old 03-13-2013, 10:29 AM   #38
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:)

Great report! i loved the photos. i wish i could do such a trip one day.
You should visit my country as well, Greece, the weather is getting better, you will have sunny rides and lots of thingsto see and do :)

ride safeee!
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Old 03-14-2013, 06:35 AM   #39
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You should visit my country as well, Greece, the weather is getting better, you will have sunny rides and lots of thingsto see and do :)

ride safeee!
Greece would be nice! So many great places to visit makes planning the next one a challenge...
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Old 03-14-2013, 08:00 AM   #40
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SUPER!!!
makes me wanne do this too!
have the bike, but also the wife :(
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Old 03-14-2013, 08:11 AM   #41
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Day 5

Day 5: The Alps - Bellano, Italy to Davos, Swtizerland



It's the fifth day and we wake up to sun for the first time on the trip!



The morning view during breakfast.



Leaving Villa Anita - our favourite stay so far.



We spent the morning visiting nearby Varenna - a beautiful spot the pizzeria owners had recommended the night before.



Waiting for lunch by the lake.





Visiting the beach in 20+ degree weather felt almost surreal coming from the freezing mountains of Switzerland the day before.



After filling the tank in Bormio, we start up the mountain towards Stelvio - looking back at the road as it wrapped along the mountainside.



Heading higher up, the temperate drops and we change into our rain gear for added wind protection.



Looking up at the climb ahead... ears popping constantly with the changing altitude.



Joining the many riders as we arrive at Stelvio Pass a short while later.



Another GS entering the summit - I've never seen so many GS's in one place before.



The Stelvio summit.



A short while down Stelvio we stop for the view.



15 minutes later still heading downhill - hairpin to hairpin - with no sight of the bottom in view.



Feeling small in the massive mountains.



Riders carving through the pass.



A look up at Stelvio towards the summit. We were heading back up the way we came, the sun was getting low and there was lots more riding still ahead. Hours seemed to go by like minutes on days like this.



Leaving Stelvio we hit the Umbrail pass, which was now back in Switzerland, just bordering Italy. This section was one of - if not THE - most fun road I've ever ridden (starting at 5:54 in the video below). Set in a beautiful Swiss landscape, these perfect twisties with changing elevations, went on for a good while. The only vehicles I passed in this section of the run was a pack of 8 oncoming GS 1200s.

From here we would ride many more mountain passes - each one completely different than the next. The sun was setting and before we knew it we'd be riding through the night into Davos - the temperature dropping well below freezing.

Yesterday and today had been the best two days of riding I'd ever had. We would be leaving the Alps the next morning as we headed for Germany. The days were going by too quickly - I wished I had more time to explore the Alps!


Day 5 riding video:
Another incredible ride through Stelvio pass and many other Italian and Swiss mountain passes!


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Old 03-14-2013, 11:21 AM   #42
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A look up at Stelvio towards the summit. We were heading back up the way we came, the sun was getting low and there was lots more riding still ahead. Hours seemed to go my like minutes on days like this.
Stunning photo, the best I've seen of the Stelvio pass. Front page candidate?

I was there in 2004. Great ride report
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Old 03-14-2013, 11:46 AM   #43
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[QUOTE=shay;20946358]Stunning photo, the best I've seen of the Stelvio pass. Front page candidate?

+10000

@ Krime, how hard it was to ride a motorcycle without rain and snow?
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Old 03-14-2013, 12:22 PM   #44
chekamus
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looks like your enjoying the trip some great roads to ride on! and some great pictures taken!
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Old 03-14-2013, 08:32 PM   #45
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Stunning photo, the best I've seen of the Stelvio pass. Front page candidate?

I was there in 2004. Great ride report
Appreciate it! Makes me feel much better after missing the shot from the summit looking down. Don't know how I missed that one... I've been kicking myself ever since. ;)
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