ADVrider

Go Back   ADVrider > Riding > Trip Planning > EMEA
User Name
Password
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 07-05-2013, 10:37 AM   #1
hn2805 OP
n00b
 
hn2805's Avatar
 
Joined: Apr 2012
Location: Washington DC
Oddometer: 3
Advice on Ramstein, Germany trip

Greetings to fellow riders,
My wife and I are planning on a 2-week trip in Europe. We will fly in to Ramstein, Germany in early September.
This is our first time in Europe. We plan on renting a bike, and explore parts of western Europe.
Any advice, recommendations or suggestions are highly appreciated. We need information on where to rent a bike, routes/ roads/ GPS, rules/ regulations, places to stay/ camp, weather/gears, etc.
Thank you in advance.

hn2805 screwed with this post 07-05-2013 at 10:44 AM
hn2805 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-06-2013, 02:25 AM   #2
MichaelJ
Beastly Adventurer
 
MichaelJ's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2003
Location: Sterling, Virginia, USA
Oddometer: 2,199
Greetings from Spangdahlem AB! I'm at the front end of trip #10 and will be back in northern Virginny at the end of the month.

You might check with Stefan Knopf in Heidelberg on rentals (I have a bike in storage at his place (riding it at the moment, actually)), and can vouch for him. There are others, but I don't know them. Stefan's place is about 250 meters from the Heidelberg Kirchheim train station and he has 4 B&B rooms. Extremely convenient.

Buy me lunch at a reasonable place when I get back, and I'll arrive with a stack of maps, routes & photos and I'll talk your ear off

Oh yeah - USAF (Ret) here - sounds like you're in the same boat. A question for you - are you flying Space-A? I'd like info on that.
__________________
Michael J. - IBA #3901
Ten years in the Alps (so far)
Alpine Trip Reports: 2006, 2007, 2009
Pictures, pictures and more pictures
MichaelJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-06-2013, 06:56 AM   #3
Global Rider
Alps Adventurer
 
Global Rider's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2001
Location: Canada & the Alps - N 46 31.714' E 010 27.212'
Oddometer: 3,757
Quote:
Originally Posted by hn2805 View Post
Any advice, recommendations or suggestions are highly appreciated. We need information on where to rent a bike, routes/ roads/ GPS, rules/ regulations, places to stay/ camp, weather/gears, etc.
Rental: already covered by Michael. There are others, but none as reasonable.

Routes: what are you interested in riding? Narrow twisty roads, sweepers, mountains? I will always recommend the Dolomites for the greatest concentration of great roads. The ride down on back roads can be just as fun.

GPS: carry one, but just for track logging. Forget about it finding great roads. Maps do a far better job of that.

Maps: get those in advance and get maps with a scale of 1:250 000 or better, but no more than 1:500 000. I find 1:200 000 ideal...good enough detail without needing to carry a slew of maps.

Accomodations: I never camped there as I coupld not be bothered spending valuable time packing up damp gear every morning. B&Bs and hotels usually run less than €35 per person, per night with breakfast and less than €50 pp/pn with dinner. I have a slew of great places to stay...just need to know where you are headed.

Riding gear: quality stuff that can handle wet weather should you be so unlucky. September (never been there then) might be a bit cooler than June. It can get quite cool on the passes. For example, on the Hahntennjoch (June 25th), it was 5.6 degrees C in light rain. Northern Italy where the Dolomites are usually has good weather and south of the Brenner, the weather is usually noticeably warmer.

See my second link below for more info.

I just got back from a 5 week self-guided tour there, also my 19th year in a row.
__________________
All the best,
Alex


Euro & North American Travel & Technical Stuff for the R1150 GS & Adventure

Euro & Alps Motorcycle Tours - Priced Right, How to go about

Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds.....A. Einstein
Global Rider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-06-2013, 08:05 AM   #4
MichaelJ
Beastly Adventurer
 
MichaelJ's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2003
Location: Sterling, Virginia, USA
Oddometer: 2,199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Global Rider View Post
GPS: carry one, but just for track logging. Forget about it finding great roads. Maps do a far better job of that.

Maps: get those in advance and get maps with a scale of 1:250 000 or better, but no more than 1:500 000. I find 1:200 000 ideal...
+1 on the maps. I carry a laptop and dump my GPS to it each night. I have a ride collection now in Google Earth that I can revisit any time I want

Quote:
Originally Posted by Global Rider View Post
Riding gear: quality stuff that can handle wet weather should you be so unlucky.
A good textile suit with a waterproof outer shell. A lot have waterproof liners, but then you have to wear the liner - and it may be too warm for that. Firstgear Kilimanjaro is a great choice if you're looking for new gear for not too much money. BMW or Klim if you have a bigger budget than I do

Quote:
Originally Posted by Global Rider View Post
I just got back from a 5 week self-guided tour there, also my 19th year in a row.
Glad to see that you've healed up & riding again.
__________________
Michael J. - IBA #3901
Ten years in the Alps (so far)
Alpine Trip Reports: 2006, 2007, 2009
Pictures, pictures and more pictures
MichaelJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-06-2013, 08:15 AM   #5
Global Rider
Alps Adventurer
 
Global Rider's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2001
Location: Canada & the Alps - N 46 31.714' E 010 27.212'
Oddometer: 3,757
Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelJ View Post
Glad to see that you've healed up & riding again.
No way I would ever quit. I was riding there the following summer again and acting as a tour guide for friends on their first ever Euro/Alps motorcycle tour.

I shipped my other R1150 GS Adventure over as well since the idiot/inbred on the cell phone (I was stopped in traffic) wrote the last one off.

I did buy a Porsche 911 in case some other cell phone yapping clown decides to take me out...had to have one before I croaked.

I won't have any time constraints starting next year.
__________________
All the best,
Alex


Euro & North American Travel & Technical Stuff for the R1150 GS & Adventure

Euro & Alps Motorcycle Tours - Priced Right, How to go about

Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds.....A. Einstein
Global Rider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-06-2013, 08:24 AM   #6
luckychucky
Beastly Adventurer
 
luckychucky's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2011
Location: SE Missouri
Oddometer: 1,163
OOOOOO, sounds like a good time

First go to AAA and get your international Drivers License with Motorcycle Endorsement. Fly into Ramstein, then fly into Crete, catch ferry boat from Chania on Crete to Athens, take train to Patra. Rent an Avis Fiat UNO, drive to an Ionian Island turn in the rental, and rent you some scooters. I'd keep the car myself, it's better than scooter. Be careful when turning at intersections because of the loose beach sand, but forget any other stuff, travel light. When your done with your beach roaming on scooters, then. Return to Patra, take a ferry to Ancona, train it to Rome, Florence, and Venice. Maybe rent scooters in Rome. Anyway, stay southern Europe. Then, some how get to Siganella Naval Air Station, and catch return flight back to Ramstein, or Crete-Ramstein, and back to the states. Do it every chance you get. Maybe you don't like southern Europe, but that's where most the other Europeans will be on their holidays. Enjoy the beaches.

luckychucky screwed with this post 07-06-2013 at 08:33 AM
luckychucky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-06-2013, 08:30 AM   #7
Mortis (the Brit)
Seeker of the truth
 
Joined: Oct 2007
Oddometer: 92
Germany is my favourite place in Europe and where your landing is smack bang in the middle of some of the prettiest scenery going. Head north to the area around the Nurburgring or south to the Black Forest and you can't go wrong. If you head north to the Eifel Vulcanpark, I can highly recommend this place -

http://www.bikertreff.de/

If you're not bringing your own riding gear, find one of these stores and get their gear. Not the cheapest stuff around but I'd say around 60 - 70 % of us European riders who do big mileages wear their gear. Buy a textile waterproof jacket and trousers and remove the thermal lining.

http://www.hein-gericke.de/

Here's the English version -

http://www.hein-gericke.co.uk/

If you want some twisties, head to the Alps. This site is helpful for finding the best roads.

http://www.alpineroads.com/

I can't help you with the hire side of things as I always catch the ferry (I'm English). Are you camping or staying in B+Bs / hotels? If you're camping, here's two sites for you.

http://www.eurocamp.co.uk/

http://www.campingcardinternational.com/

Some places, you can book a tent and all the gear so you don't have to carry anything.

One last piece of advice. Although a lot of Europeans speak English, learn some phrases in German, French and Italian depending on where you're going. Even if it's only numbers and how to order beer and food. It goes a long way.

Lastly, enjoy your trip

Mortis (the Brit) screwed with this post 07-06-2013 at 08:35 AM
Mortis (the Brit) is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-06-2013, 10:47 PM   #8
MichaelJ
Beastly Adventurer
 
MichaelJ's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2003
Location: Sterling, Virginia, USA
Oddometer: 2,199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mortis (the Brit) View Post
Lastly, enjoy your trip
Not much point in going if you don't.
__________________
Michael J. - IBA #3901
Ten years in the Alps (so far)
Alpine Trip Reports: 2006, 2007, 2009
Pictures, pictures and more pictures
MichaelJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-06-2013, 10:56 PM   #9
MichaelJ
Beastly Adventurer
 
MichaelJ's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2003
Location: Sterling, Virginia, USA
Oddometer: 2,199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Global Rider View Post
I won't have any time constraints starting next year.
Retirement, I assume? Congrats and welcome to the club. 4 wonderful years now & counting.

Not living quite as high as I was when I was working, but my retirement account is making money faster than I'm spending it - bless its little heart (and my financial manager's heart, too)
__________________
Michael J. - IBA #3901
Ten years in the Alps (so far)
Alpine Trip Reports: 2006, 2007, 2009
Pictures, pictures and more pictures
MichaelJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-07-2013, 10:59 AM   #10
hn2805 OP
n00b
 
hn2805's Avatar
 
Joined: Apr 2012
Location: Washington DC
Oddometer: 3
Thank you all for your comments! It was great to learn from your experiences. The amount of information you recommended is so vast, it's going to take some time to go through.
For now, I feel much more confident about planning for the trip. If there's anything else you can think of, please let me know. I am a life-time student.

@MichaelJ: Tracking your last trips is fun. Some of the pics are amazing. Can't wait to see you back in DC area for lunch, and Thank you for the advice. We are flying space A to Ramstein, leaving from Baltimore. It's going to be our first time. Will take note of the process. We are learning the "how-to" from my wife's colleagues (she's the one in the service). Enjoy your trip!

@Alex: Mr. Global Rider, 19th year in a row!, how do you do it? I went through the links, and got very impressed with your experience. Thank you for the detailed response. I saw both Canada and the Alps on your location: are you from Canada? I used to live there for 15 yrs.

Thank you "luckychucky" and "Mortis the Brit" for your advice. The links and info you gave are very handy to have. They save me a lot of time on researching.
We plan on doing both camping and B&B. We will bring our own gear, but will need to rent a bike since it's our first trip. My wife and I are in our 30s. We have a long way to go before we hit the golden time. A lot more to learn and experience.
Have a good day, gentlemen!
hn2805 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-07-2013, 03:17 PM   #11
JJay51
Adventurer
 
Joined: Mar 2013
Oddometer: 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by hn2805 View Post
Thank you all for your comments! It was great to learn from your experiences. The amount of information you recommended is so vast, it's going to take some time to go through.
For now, I feel much more confident about planning for the trip. If there's anything else you can think of, please let me know. I am a life-time student.

@MichaelJ: Tracking your last trips is fun. Some of the pics are amazing. Can't wait to see you back in DC area for lunch, and Thank you for the advice. We are flying space A to Ramstein, leaving from Baltimore. It's going to be our first time. Will take note of the process. We are learning the "how-to" from my wife's colleagues (she's the one in the service). Enjoy your trip!

@Alex: Mr. Global Rider, 19th year in a row!, how do you do it? I went through the links, and got very impressed with your experience. Thank you for the detailed response. I saw both Canada and the Alps on your location: are you from Canada? I used to live there for 15 yrs.

Thank you "luckychucky" and "Mortis the Brit" for your advice. The links and info you gave are very handy to have. They save me a lot of time on researching.
We plan on doing both camping and B&B. We will bring our own gear, but will need to rent a bike since it's our first trip. My wife and I are in our 30s. We have a long way to go before we hit the golden time. A lot more to learn and experience.
Have a good day, gentlemen!
You maybe interested in this site for campsite guides which you can also get as a very good free app for your smartphone to locate campsites across europe, gives guides on each site and also links to the sites website or telephone numbers to contact the site.

http://alanrogers.com/
__________________
Spain 2011/12

Euro 2013
JJay51 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2013, 07:01 AM   #12
hn2805 OP
n00b
 
hn2805's Avatar
 
Joined: Apr 2012
Location: Washington DC
Oddometer: 3
Thanks JJ. This site will come in handy.
hn2805 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-11-2013, 12:11 AM   #13
MichaelJ
Beastly Adventurer
 
MichaelJ's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2003
Location: Sterling, Virginia, USA
Oddometer: 2,199
Quote:
Originally Posted by hn2805 View Post
Can't wait to see you back in DC area for lunch...
In the meantime, look here. It's a presentation that I've given a few times. It's not quite stand-alone (it's meant to illustrate my verbal comments), but has received some good feedback - some of the slides have expanded comments in the "Notes" field.
__________________
Michael J. - IBA #3901
Ten years in the Alps (so far)
Alpine Trip Reports: 2006, 2007, 2009
Pictures, pictures and more pictures
MichaelJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-04-2013, 07:24 PM   #14
Micklin
Micklin
 
Joined: Apr 2013
Location: Wiesbaden Germany
Oddometer: 11
Back roads

Good luck with your trip. I am in Wiesbaden, an hour north of Ramstein. I think everyone covered most up above. My only addition is to just pick the back roads and go. In any direction. The countryside in all of Europe is great and all offer great rides and views as long as you stay on the back roads. France, Luxembourg, Belgium, Czech Republic, Austria, Switz, Italy Spain all have great roads. Autobahns in France are expensive. Pick a direction and go. The further east you go, the less traffic for the most part except for cities of course. Personally, Bavaria is the best place in the world I have ridden. Great roads, mostly little traffic and awesome views. If you go far enough south through Switz, you can ride Stelvio Pass. World famous. Anyway, good luck and I agree with good waterproof riding gear. Enjoy.
Micklin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-05-2013, 03:55 AM   #15
MichaelJ
Beastly Adventurer
 
MichaelJ's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2003
Location: Sterling, Virginia, USA
Oddometer: 2,199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Micklin View Post
If you go far enough south through Switz, you can ride Stelvio Pass.
Of course, you'll have to duck into Italy to do that. The Stelvio is very close to Switzerland, but not quite in it.
__________________
Michael J. - IBA #3901
Ten years in the Alps (so far)
Alpine Trip Reports: 2006, 2007, 2009
Pictures, pictures and more pictures
MichaelJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Share

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

.
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


Times are GMT -7.   It's 05:32 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2014