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Old 08-26-2011, 12:29 PM   #46
ScorpioVI OP
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Day 7: Livigno to Thun. Continued...

We had planned on staying at Interlaken for the night. After the fighting the traffic and crowds, and finding out the Best Western was going to charge us 300 Euros ($450) for a room for the night. We decided to push on for Thun even though it was getting pretty late in the day, and we were tired.

The Brenzersee, looking towards Interlaken.



Seeing the burka here was startling. I've had some pretty good exposure to the Muslim culture, so if I found it startling, it's little wonder why there's such a strong backlash against Muslims in Europe.



Continuing on towards Thun, this is the Thunersee. Interlaken is basically right in between two humongous lakes.







The shoreline was dotted by boathouses. I need to win the lottery, this would be a great place to live.





Another group looking like they had just picked up their bikes from Moto Center Thun. I was a little jealous.








We got to Thun and rode around for a while looking for a hotel with no luck. The GPS was no help whatsoever. We decided to return to Moto Center Thun and see if they could recommend a hotel. Not only did they recommend one, they managed to secure for us the last room in the hotel, and get a discount on top of it. for the guys from Moto Center Thun.
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Old 08-26-2011, 12:35 PM   #47
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Epilogue

Sadly that was pretty much it for us. We had rented the bikes for a total of 8 days. We had spent 7 on the road thus far. I was planning on doing a couple more passes on Day 8, mainly Glaubenberg and Glaubenbuelen, which were highly recommended. However we were already in Thun, just a couple of miles from the Moto Center. We were tired, slept in, and we didn't want to push our luck or our schedule. We regretfully chose to turn in the bikes a few hours earlier than planned. We were flying out the following day and chose instead to spend more time at the chalet in Liechtenstein and do a little shopping.

This was by far the best vacation I've ever had. I had spent a year stationed in Schweinfurt, Germany with the 1st Infantry Division, but I never really got to experience Europe much. A combination of lack of funds on a soldier's pay and was really too young to appreciate the opportunity. In the two weeks I spent there recently, I felt like I had experienced more than the year I spent in Germany. I guess motorcycling in a foreign country does that, it forces you to be in the element, and force you to interact with the locals.

With the exception of one sulking waitress whose lunch we inadvertently interrupted, everybody we met were kind and helpful. If there was any resentment or hostility towards us Americans, it was well concealed. I would make an attempt to speak German or Italian, and when they realized I was crap at it they would automatically switch to English to accommodate us. There was only one instance when we were completely stymied by the language barrier. We were in a Doner Kebap restaurant in Thun and the proprietor was trying to communicate something to us. She was Turkish, spoke no English, and for the life of me I could not figure out what she was trying to say. After a while it turned out Sarah was trying to pay with Euros and she was telling us they only take Swiss Francs.

The week we spent out on the road was by far the best riding of my life, I've been riding for 10 years now, pretty much been all over CA. Some Nevada. Been to Baja. I have never encountered the kind of motorcycle bliss that was offered in Europe. We have some damn good roads here, but everything is so far apart that it takes a lot of slab to get there. Being in Switzerland was like being in the Bay Area, but instead of having 9/35/84/Grizzly/Hamilton/etc as your local roads, you instead have the highest passes and world class roads. Instead of crossing into a different county, you're crossing into a different country.

I'm already planning and saving for my next trip. It is that good. If you have never been there, you owe it to yourself to at least make the trip once in your life.

Thanks for reading this Ride Report, I hope you found it entertaining and educational. If you didn't, that's all right too, I'll take solace in the fact that I wasted your time (and screw you!).
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Old 08-26-2011, 12:38 PM   #48
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Our SPOT track for all 7 days. SPOT worked flawlessly.

Big



Big
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Old 08-26-2011, 12:38 PM   #49
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Saving this space for a gear review.
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Old 08-26-2011, 02:48 PM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ScorpioVI View Post
There's a house in almost the dead center of this picture. How he gets up there, I have no clue...
You mean this one?


I wondered that, too!

Nice ride report!

regards,
Richard
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Old 08-26-2011, 03:08 PM   #51
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Off the charts photography
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Old 08-29-2011, 08:44 AM   #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sauerkrautman View Post
You mean this one?

I wondered that, too!

That's the one! And I don't see a helipad like I thought.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Edmond Dantès View Post
Off the charts photography

Thanks!
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Old 09-12-2011, 03:58 PM   #53
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Great report! Europe is on my must do list after talking with you guys the other day. Funny thing, I didnt know sarmen are engaged until I read your report. Although I thought they might have been, I just didn't think to ask.
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Old 09-12-2011, 04:43 PM   #54
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thanks!

Great RR and photos. Motivates me to getting to Europe on a Bike. Have been saying for years that I am going to do 6-8 months, gotta hope for early retirement and good health.
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Old 09-13-2011, 08:07 PM   #55
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Great RR and photos. Motivates me to getting to Europe on a Bike. Have been saying for years that I am going to do 6-8 months, gotta hope for early retirement and good health.

DO NOT WAIT FOR RETIREMENT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



EVERYONE, who likes corners, MUST do Europe, best roads in the world for two wheels.
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Old 09-13-2011, 10:57 PM   #56
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superb....
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Old 09-14-2011, 01:02 PM   #57
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Another convert. If too many people discover this it'll ruin it for the rest of us so be a little selfish and keep it to yourself

Not that I did mind you. I'm trying to figure out the logistics and funding for a third trip as a follow on to these two:

http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=172101

http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=681136
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Old 09-14-2011, 01:53 PM   #58
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My first was in '99 with the wife, a ONCE in a lifetime trip.....................next year will be our 8th trip over. I have spent 22 weeks so far, unbelievable every time, I am a Alps-aholic for sure. Wife also informed me on this years trip that it should be an annual trip...................who am I to argue


And what most don't realize is the entire Alps range would fit inside the state of North Carolina!!! No better concentration of roads anywhere.
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Old 09-14-2011, 02:27 PM   #59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sauerkrautman View Post
You mean this one?


I wondered that, too!

Nice ride report!

regards,
Richard
Easy ... by foot !
Looks like a Refuge/mountain hut , most all around the alps are reachable just by foot on mule tracks or trail , some have small material cable car for the supply, but others are supplied just by helicopter (once or twice a season - this costs!) or by "porteurs" , people that hike by foot with 24 wine bottles in the rucksack ... or two cheese forms . In my youth I did it.
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Old 09-16-2011, 12:36 PM   #60
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We were over there riding about 3 weeks ago. It sucks you guys had crappy weather. For us it was hot down in the valleys but up high was great. Only had 2 days of rain.

Now have a collection of stickers of most of the passes we did. Best one was of course Stelvio, we hit it late in the day and there was almost no traffic. The other one is Passo Giovo.

We are also planning on going back in a couple of years. We rented a couple of g650GS out of Milan.
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