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Old 04-07-2010, 02:35 PM   #1
High_Pressure OP
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Test Ride 2

Hello Everyone,

on this Easter weekend I did a 7 days trip to Croatia to get some much needed sun and summer feeling.
This was a trip to test some luggage on the bike, and this thread will be my test of how to set up a Ride Report, so you might have to get along with some poor photography and writing.








The first day was pretty wet and was 90% autobahn.
I haven't got any pictures of that day as I had to spend my energy on cursing or telling myself how hard and manly I am to ride in that annoying cold rain.

I spent the first night in a hotel in Feistritz i. R. not far from the border to Slovenija.
The next morning I went for Loiblpass into SLO.
Still cloudy, but no rain, which is always good.




Easter was early this year and winter not long ago:


Through Slovenija I tried to avoid the Avtocesta.
There are lakes caused by the melting snow i



I went past Ljubljana and up to the bordercrossing to Croatia in Prezid:



The border guard told me that my passport is only valid until mid of this year, which I already knew. So I thanked him and was happy to get a stamp:


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Old 04-07-2010, 02:47 PM   #2
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In Croatia

Unfortunately it had already begun to rain in SLO and the rain did not stop at the border.
So, as I already felt the water getting through my rainsuit I had to stop again.



Then came a twisty mountain road, which is nice to ride, but due to the winter there was a lot of small gravel on the asphalt, especially in all the corners, so I had to ride at a slow pace.

That it is Mrzla Vodica.
Temperatures still ranging from cold to fokken cold, I had to take another cigarette break there. A nice place there.



When I came closer to the coast, I saw, what I was hoping for: mediteranean climate...

Well, you maybe can imagine, that between all the white of the clouds there is some blue sky.

And then the first stop on the coastal road south of Crikvenica:

Yep! Sun. Finally, after 1 and a half day riding in cold, wet weather this was so good.
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Old 04-07-2010, 05:55 PM   #3
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Well, it looks like you found what you were looking for
Thanks for the report and pics.
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Old 04-07-2010, 06:36 PM   #4
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Old 04-08-2010, 12:02 AM   #5
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Day 2.

This was supposed to be the third post for yesterday, but at midnight the

forum stopped working and didn't do nothing.






I rode down south on the coastal road.

It got a bit late while I was looking for a room, as there is not much south of Senj.

It was about 19.30 when I decided to take the ferry to the island Pag.





I got to Novalja at about 21.00 (9pm) and got a hotel room.

Enough for now. On this last day I did 13 hrs of riding, as I overstayed a bit in Croatia.
Well, I will try to continue the report as quickly as possible.
But I have to admit that there will be a big amount of riding on sealed roads.
Examples:



Have a good time and ride safely.
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Old 04-08-2010, 11:22 AM   #6
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Day 3

I ate too much, went to bed after a short walk through the center of Novalja, feeling a bit sick from day one already, and so I was not really in good shape the next morning.

The view from the hotel window:


I wanted to ride south back onto the mainland, but somehow found myself riding to the northernmost town Lun on the island.


End of the road in Lun:


In the center of this picture you can see the Transalp of a French man to whom I talked. He wasn't happy to be in Croatia at all, as this meant he was getting closer to the end of his 4 month trip from South Africa to France.


On top of the mountains of the mainland you could still see the snow:


The road is nice to ride.
This is south of Novalja.




A small detour onto gravel, first but not last one:




I went to Kosljun for my lunch break and a longer rest.


Heading back towards the island's main road there was another nice road:


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Old 04-08-2010, 11:51 AM   #7
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Day 4

With no certain plan of where to stay for the night I headed south to cross the bridge to the mainland. When I passed a grill that had fresh janjetina (grilled lamb) the decision was quickly made to turn around and have dinner and ask for a room. With my tourist-level Croatian I asked for a room. The Man sent his wife off to get the room ready, as the season for tourists hasn't really begun yet.
Next day I started off at 10.30, again late. Somehow I didn't get into the "travel feel" that I used to have, getting up at 6 and starting off at 7 or 8.
Also, my back was sore, as before this trip I had ridden 100kms max.
So 8 riding a day was a bit hard now.

The bridge to the mainland:




I wanted to bypass Zadar, as I am really not into city traffic.
From the bridge I pretty much rode in a straight line to Drnis, a town inland near Sibenik.




There is really a big difference when you leave the coast.
Hardly any tourists, hardly anyone, and very nice landscapes.

You have to ride the Jadranska Magistrala, the coastal road at least once, because it is really nice, but having done that, you should really leave that main path and explore this area.



Between Kistanje and Drnis you cross the National Park Krka.

At this point it is very narrow and you basically only cross the bridge and then leave the park again.



I had a bit of "fuel panic" as the reserve lamp had been on for quite a while now, I only had 10 or so kms left in the tank, and the only petrol station that i found had only gas, like LPG gas.
I found a petrol station at the other end of Drnis and went on towards Omis a nice coastal town where the Cetina river enters the sea.





The place from where I took these pictures has a small chapel and an altar. So I kind of rode into a church.



Again I took a hotel room.
I proved again, that the season has not begun yet, as the restaurant offered one meal, and that only because a bus of French school kids came later that evening.

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Old 04-08-2010, 12:11 PM   #8
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Dan broj pet.

Day 5.

Omis:


The clouds in the sky didn't make me happy, and the weather forecast had told rain for this day for the whole Balkan. That was a bit sad to see on the TV: The whole map had the clouds-with-rain symbols.

Well anyway, the petrol that I bought needed to be burned so I rode through the Cetina canyon.

That's a poor photo...


The main road was closed, so I had to take the detour up the moutains, very nice views over the valley.



Finally I reached Zadvarje, a place where I had not stopped last year to enjoy the view over the valley.
Since then I wanted to return here.





Here I met Thomas from Freising which is very close to the place where I come from. He had been in Dubrovnik and heading home on his 650 VStrom. He told me of some heavy rain he had come into on the coast.

I headed towards the coastal road again, to get an
impression of what the weather was like there.


No rain, good.
Break for eating:


View of the coast:


On a nearby mountain there is something like a gigantic movie screen facing inland. I was curious what that was and also wanted to get a better view over the area.
So I rode up this small paved road:


Unfortunately on the top end of the road there was a locked gate. The road didn't go up to the top of the hill but to some house that is probably somehow connected to the "movie screen".
I haven't got a picture of that thing, but of another one, coming up later in the report. Maybe someone can tell me what that is. I guess it's for some military pupose.

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Old 04-08-2010, 12:42 PM   #9
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Day 5



I now wanted to leave the main road.
I first had no luck in finding a gravel road, as the roads leading up to the small villages somehow all had a dead end at the end of them, and I somehow really thought that I just do something wrong.
Maybe I had to stay to the tarmac?
Well, I headed back, down to the main road, and saw that sideroad, and took it.




Uphill section. Steeper in reality than in this picture.
Nothing too extreme though, as I as an unexperienced rider could do it with the heavy bike and the road tires.


Some section that must have seen fire sometime:






View over the coast:


The town is Makarska, where I fuelled up and went down towards "staza vrata" and to turn off left to ride up Mount Sveti Jure.



It was around half past 5 when I started off to the moutain. I quickly found the entrance to the road that usually attracts a 35kn fee, not so now, before the tourist season.


Already from the coast one could see the clouds up there.
That's allright, that is not the mountain I am going to ride up....?




And it is half past 6 by now, it gets dark at 8. It'll be fine, no worries.

Cold again. Not a problem.
In front of me was a guy from Munich also driving up. He had to turn around 200meters from the top as he could get across this:

Just when I had taken this photo there came a car from the top with young Croatians in it. "That has not been there before, when we came up here"

So, this snow is starting to slide off?
Nah, we shovelled the snow away with our hands and the could drive down.

On the top end of the road, you could not even see the top of the antenna tower:


Still a lot of snow up there.
1762meters above sealevel that is.


Cigarette smoked and down again:

Getting a bit dark.



So much for now.
Upcoming:

Storm blows away gear and almost breaks tent
plus:



Have a nice evening/ day. Ride safely.

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Old 04-14-2010, 01:28 AM   #10
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movie screen

"movie screen" is usually a TV signal reflector.
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Old 04-23-2010, 12:50 PM   #11
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Last bits

Quote:
Originally Posted by francs
"movie screen" is usually a TV signal reflector.
Thank you for the reply. That makes sense.
We don't have these at home.

Here's the last bit:

As it was already late when I came down from the Sv.Jure Mountain I decided to put up the tent near the road.
Unfortunately I had already halfway put up my tent when I realized that there was a sometimes very strong wind (the bura I think it is named) blowing up through that spot where I was. I was too tired and it was too late to look for another spot, so I strapped the tent to the bike and trees so it wouldn't be blown away.
When I went to bed I realized, that my matress was missing. I definitely had packed it so it must have been blown away.
Sacrificed to the god of winds.
I tried to find it, but it was pitchdark and I only had a small torch with me and I just couldn't be f___ed walking around in the woods with the
wind blowing so strong.
I used my riding gear as matress, it worked, but not too comfortable, of course.
Night was not too good, next morning:



The wind was still strong so I got my stuff together and took off.

I rode north on the Jadranska Magistrala.

Marina near Trogir



Ina Petrol Station.
Since my first visit they mean "having arrived in holiday" to me. When I first visited Croatia with friends
who live in Zagreb, we bought our first Karlovacko at one of these stations in ZG,
where you could take the cans out of the fridge directly from the car. Well, more a personal thing that is, I guess.

I had to gain some distance so picture stops got less.
As I already know the beaty of the coastal road I decided to turn right in Biograd na moru.
In Karin I saw an old man sitting on one of these stone walls and he somehow reminded me of someone... ah, I had seen him on day 4, when I took a then left turn here.
So here I crossed my "old" route.


Lunchbreak:


Last year I visited Macedonia with a friend of mine in an old Mercedes Bus and we were in a town where the famous singer Tose is buried who died in a car accident. This town has the same name, so I took the photo.


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Old 04-23-2010, 01:02 PM   #12
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Very nice report and pictures. Makes me wanting to ship the bike(s) over and ride again in Europe (beeing doing that in the Bavarian Forrest and surroundings before moving to the US).

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Old 04-23-2010, 01:22 PM   #13
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More



This is Obrovac with the river Zrmanja.



Very often road surfaces looked like this, esp. in bends.
If you are not prepared the unfamiliar feeling on this type of surface might worry you, which it did, when I hit it the first time.



I had seen a small road with a pass in my map and headed north.
To me as a foreigner all the mine-warning signs were worth taking a photo.




Here's the "giant movie screen" that I mentioned before and which is for reflecting radio/tv signals apparently.



Crossing the new autocesta.


And then this sign:

I know little Croatian, but I know "kraj" means "end".
I hadn't hoped for this. So I was very happy to see this sign and leave the tarmac behind.

So here's some of pictures of the pass road:







I was definitely happy.

The view over to the river, you can also see the highway:














Coming closer to the top, temperatures were lower again.




This is at the top of the pass road. All the way up there's a lot of these mine signs:



The sign tell me, that I am on the right way:


So I smoked my "cigarette of triumph" and off I was...
for about 50 meters:

I walked all the way through the snow, trying to find a way to get through with the bike, but in some parts it was about 1 meter deep and the surface was not firm enough to carry the bike.
Then I thought about walking the bike on the side of that snow, but there was a big trunk blocking that way. No! Only 200 meters was this stretch long.
One word that I learned on this great forum here came to my mind:
Showstopper...
?
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Old 04-23-2010, 02:39 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by High_Pressure
So I smoked my "cigarette of triumph" and off I was...
for about 50 meters:

I walked all the way through the snow, trying to find a way to get through with the bike, but in some parts it was about 1 meter deep and the surface was not firm enough to carry the bike.
Then I thought about walking the bike on the side of that snow, but there was a big trunk blocking that way. No! Only 200 meters was this stretch long.
One word that I learned on this great forum here came to my mind:
Showstopper...
?
That snow might be a showstopper, but please, please don't let it be a threadstopper. What did you do?
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Old 05-07-2010, 02:00 PM   #15
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2nd last and last day

Time to finish this off:


Well, as I said there was no way to get past this snow so I did a bit more walking around, and there was a way to an old building that looked promising.
Again I had to cross some snow, fortunately not too deep and manageable.
From the building led another way in the direction of the road that was blocked by the snow. It did not look as if it was regularly used. It'll be allright I reckoned and so I rode it, and it finally took me back to the "main" road right past the snow:



That was a pleasant achievement as I really hate backtracking.
The road down looked like this, still with snow on the side of it:





I think this machinery is used to maintain the road, I saw two of them:


This is where the asphalt started again:


I was lucky that I stopped for taking pictures here, as one of my red sidebags had come lose:


Further down:
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