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Old 05-22-2014, 06:35 AM   #46
GFJ
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Soundtrack

Steve - what's the soundtrack of the 2nd vid? Sounds a bit Morcheeba?

Nice couple of ascents in this vid

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Old 05-22-2014, 03:33 PM   #47
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Gareth, music in 2nd video is all from an old Bassomatic's album, I think it's called "Set The Controls To The Heart Of The Bass" let me know if you want a copy.

Quite different terrain at times to last year, still got another 3-4 videos to do, here's number 4, unfortunately the music (various Bluegrass tunes) has been cut due to a copyright claim. I'm deliberately riding poorly here just to give Uncle Rick a chance to burn a few calories.....

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Old 05-22-2014, 03:45 PM   #48
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A pleasant evening looked to be in front of us but this was ruined by the appearance of two dodgy looking Portuguese guys but more about that later.
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Very dodgy.....
Be aware of that type of portuguese wildlife! They tend to be very dangerous... especially when food and wine are concerned...
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Old 05-22-2014, 05:36 PM   #49
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Beautiful pictures and landscaping.my country is amazing for riding motorcycle .
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Old 05-23-2014, 02:03 PM   #50
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Great pictures & videos all, looking forwards to more
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Old 05-28-2014, 07:30 AM   #51
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Hi guys..
Slightly off topic but if anyone needs a good mechanic in braganca i can recomend Eb motos in south of town near the industrial.area..also do.enduro clothing...speak spanish but no englishnor french..the girl races superbikes lol..just had the ccm fixed there..
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Old 05-29-2014, 05:44 AM   #52
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No probs, Hedgerowspecialist, that's useful information - thank you very much.

Glad your bike's fixed!
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Old 05-31-2014, 05:16 AM   #53
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The first river crossing safely behind us, we climbed higher into the mountains and at some point the faster riders (well, that would be the rest of the group... ) had overtaken me - only Tim and Steve were nowhere to be seen. "They are coming", shouted every junction marker reassuringly, "just keep going!" And so I went...

Rick and Timpo remembered that our planned route was blocked further ahead and, thanks to TopoLusitania showing you all unpaved tracks available, deviated onto a less frequented goats' trail to get us to the top of the hill. But only six of us emerged from the undergrowth...


O Possu, where art thou?


C'mon, it doesn't matter if two are missing, there are still enough men to choose from...


... and we still have a whole lot of fantastic lanes to ride today!


And so we carried on, hoping that Tim and Steve would be able to fend for themselves and we would meet them again further down the trail.

The countryside and all the fragrances around us were just beau-ti-ful...


At crucial junctions we waited for a while - but to no avail...


Looking ahead was occasionally hindered by the dense vegetation, so I couldn't see why Rob suddenly stopped...


Maybe to look at this idyllic Portuguese river, peacefully flowing away in the afternoon sun?


Oops, not so peaceful anymore - if you scroll quickly now, you could almost watch a video...














Who's next?


Gandalf lives!


All hands on deck!


The boys came even back for me...


... and walked my little one over; I just had to make sure that I wasn't swept away when crossing the river myself.

Then it was up another hill with stunning views...


... and down to the third river - the biggest so far...


Rick was the only one who actually rode his bike over, although it was often hairy in places, as he later admitted - and absolutely knackering!


Several scouts were sent out to explore alternative routes...


Some considered turning back...


Other just pushed on...


What? You want me to get into the water again to pull you out?


The engineer looked for tools...


... to keep us upright in the strong current


Lenny


VTwins4me still in good spirits...


But just when he had almost made it up the bank, the SE slipped and landed on poor Rob's knee, tearing a crucial ligament in the process...


I've been accused as being cruel for posting a picture of a man in agony - but it had to be done as a warning to others: stay 100% focussed until you are actually on terra firma...

Timpolino kindly looked after me and my CRF again...


... and I just had to cross the river - which was still not exactly a walk in the park, I can tell you that!


Time was getting on and we still had a fair few miles to ride to our agreed overnight stop in Chaves. The boys decided to do a bit of motorway, also to make it easier for Rob who could hardly change gear anymore. I didn't expect my little bike to appreciate this move, and so I took the long way home via Verín and the N532 in Spain (yes, we had crossed the border somewhere in the wilderness). Imagine my surprise when I saw the boys again huddled together at the motorway exit in Feces de Abaixo, still 12 km north of our destination! They waved me on to continue and only later I heard that Lenny's bike had suddenly given up the ghost and couldn't be persuaded to spring to life again...

Rob followed me and with the help of a friendly local - who just stopped his car next to us while I was poring over the map, asked if we were lost and then guided us into the town centre of Chaves - we found Tim and Steve sitting on the square, having already negotiated rooms for all of us in the excellent Residencial Termas.


En-suite rooms with breakfast €15 per head - including secure parking!


After sorting out the sleeping arrangements with the friendly landlady (English men insist on twin beds when sharing a room, I explained in more or less perfect Spaniguese...), having a shower and a beer in the bar next to the hotel we went just across the road into the recommended restaurant Copacabana


... where we dined like kings and queens...


For home-made starters (that are usually just placed in front of you with regards from the chef), bread and butter, big platters of salad, seven steaks between two, huge amounts of sautéd potatoes, frequent questions: do you want more?, desserts, water, soft drinks, wine and beer, we paid the stately sum of €15 each...

Completely stuffed we dragged our rounded shapes back to the hotel. Possu and I retired to our chambers but the others got stuck in the bar next door and embarked on sampling as many of the 60 different beers on offer as possible. One of them must have been past its sell-by date - or so I was told in the morning...

To be continued...
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Old 06-03-2014, 03:34 PM   #54
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Great write up! Will have to join one of these days!!
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Old 06-04-2014, 05:17 AM   #55
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Will have to join one of these days!!
So you should, Antal, you will like Portugal.
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Old 06-05-2014, 07:11 AM   #56
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Many thanks for sharing your words and pics from what looks like a great trip.
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Old 06-05-2014, 12:32 PM   #57
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Thanks very much for your kind words, Chris - you never seem far away on those trips...

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Old 06-05-2014, 03:12 PM   #58
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Tuesday 29th April 2014 - Chaves to Gerês

Having caught a few glimpses of the thermal springs, the town's fortifications and historical monuments, it was with slight regret that I was getting ready to leave Chaves the next morning...


But the great leaders pointed out the time and priorities of this trip: let's ride some lanes while we are here!


And so we should - remember that we were down from eight to five after the casualties of the previous day: Tim's Ten without a working clutch, Rob with a ruptured ligament and Lenny's bike still stranded in Spain...

... leaving Iker, Timpo and Rick...


... Possu and me to explore the awesome trails of the area.


Or so we thought... But, alas, 20 kilometres into the day's route I noticed that Steve was no longer following me. Well, maybe he was waiting to have a clear run - but when he didn't catch up, I turned round and found him stationary by the road side...


Not a problem for my wonderful personal mechanic, I thought, but after an hour of diagnostics and remedial activities we were still none the wiser why the 690 didn't want to start again.

Stand by your Possu...


In the end we had no choice but to return to Chaves where we knew was a KTM dealer. And how do you get a dead bike off the spot? Well, I acquired a new skill that day...

... and my little 230 towed the lardy 690, all the luggage including Steve 18 km back to Chaves, up and down the hills, through twisty villages, over busy round-abouts, turning on tight junctions - all with minimal fuss and squeals. I was well chuffed.


Of course, as soon as we arrived at Trasmotos and had begun to explain the symptoms to the helpful owner of the dealership, the bike started at a push of the button!

Did you notice the appropriate parking?

Between the three of us (well, me mainly translating) we finally worked out what the problem was: fuel starvation - caused by Possu replacing his suspension before the trip and re-routing the fuel pipes in a slightly gravity defying way...

In the meantime the majority of our group had found their way to Trasmotos as well: Tim and Len had recovered the poorly EXC and Rob was probably on the look-out for some Portuguese bling for his cherished SE...


To save Rob's travel budget, we decided to set off straight away and ride to our next destination, Gerês, together - leaving Lenny and Tim behind in the hope they would be able to fix their bikes and catch up with us in the evening.

Of course, we had to make some progress by now and after a very nice (albeit slightly traumatic for Rob... ) lunch in Chaves, we rode some fantastic twisty tarmac (N311/N103) through the wild countryside.


Possu always finds it easy to make contact with the locals


... even if it is a rather sinister variety


... or a 3-eared dog with two tails


Mind you, it may be just my new sophisticated camera doing funny things...


In Lamalonga Possu and I left Rob to his own devices and joined the day's original route. On a particularly tricky hill climb I thought I'd be clever and take the easy side track...


Well, as you see, my knight in shining armour had to get me out of trouble again...


This is a public highway linking the villages of Zebral and Espindo. That day it was a practice race track!




The support team of the Portuguese driver reported that three other trail riders had come through not that long ago - and when the training session was over, we carried on enjoying the picturesque scenery.


The rain was closing in and we were both low on fuel, so we returned to the N103 near Salamonde and just followed the suggestions of the GPS.


The Peneda-Gerês National Park is very popular in Portugal and a lot of people have rather fancy homes around the Barragem da Caniçada, a huge hydroelectric dam filled by the river Cávado.



Not too wet we arrived at O Chana, our home for the night.


As expected, the advance party was already enjoying their first cerveja - while I was rather distracted by the four-eyed canine and the two-headed Possu...


We were accommodated in four huge youth-hostel like rooms with up to eight beds to choose from - but all en-suite and for €10 per head there was nothing to complain about. Save parking included!


Dinner was served in the restaurant downstairs and started with an entrada in the shape of beautifully cooked chicken gizzards, which Steve couldn't gorge down quickly enough...


Not sure if the landlady was actually pleased that her cuisine was so obviously appreciated...


The main course was an excellent pizza, made from scratch and baked in the stone oven right in the corner of the restaurant.


After dinner Timpo regaled us with his impressions of famous ADV riders - I blame the Piripiri...


It was still raining when we said 'Boa noite' - what would the next day bring? Would we be able to savour the fantastic views from the surrounding hills Rick and Timpo had told us so much about?

To be continued...
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Old 06-05-2014, 04:51 PM   #59
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Great stuff Ela, well up to your usual high standard
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Old 06-05-2014, 05:34 PM   #60
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The stone lodges at Cepo Verde look good - they the ones at the top of the site?

we were there last June, and going back in September, tenting though.

I found maps were useless, what nav system did you use?

Looking forward to rest of the tale.

cheers

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