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Thread: Round 2: Another European Sortie

  1. #1
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    Round 2: Another European Sortie

    Round 2 will begin shortly.

    Please bear with us.




  2. #2
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    I'm subscribed already Rob. Cannot wait for this.

    Ride safe.

  3. #3
    Son of Ah Knah Yee Click here to find out how to Subscribe
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    PUI since 2004


    [url=https://www.TickerFactory.com/]


  4. #4
    I ain't got no stinkin' visa! Click here to find out how to Subscribe
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    Go dude!



    .
    .
    etc. etc.

    ballistic

  5. #5
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    Only me!

    OK so here we go again. After a week moored in port have decided to toddle off again. This ride report is brought to you in association with 'Beers of the European Continent', powered by Nescafe (and Wotsits, until they run out that is).

    Getting ready for the off

    The week has been mainly spent doing all of those pre-trip glam items.

    A quick service from Motoscot of this Parish… the new place is very nice. Best of luck, Steve and Laura.

    And some new shoes from the lads at Motorcycle Tyres UK, Conti trail attacks, to replace my oddly mismatched Conti trail rear and road front which have done pretty well.

    In other news I also have managed to get my summer jacket repaired, after fatso managed to destroy the zip after three days on the last mission.

    I'd also repaired my Contour Roam action camera. It's claimed to be waterproofed but that, I would believe is what they call "a load of bollocks". On the last leg of the last sortie it leaked. Not good for an action camera, although bizarrely it didn't give out through the worst two storms on the continent, it waited for good old blighty rain, which clearly refreshes the parts other rains cannot reach.
    I hadn't got time to have it exchanged, plus I bought it from Amazon so it's always difficult trying to get something sorted quickly, so I opted to repair it which I have successfully managed

    I then patiently rewired my audio set-up, after the streets of Albania successfully disassembled everything last time around.

    I'd also acquired an old Garmin III from Timolgra of this parish to help my navigational efforts.

    Polished up and ready to go again..



    The remit on this trip is going to be a little different. I'll be travelling on my own, potentially linking up with my brother Nick at some point and place to be determined. I'm going to do more camping and use a bit more of the kit I've gotten together and living plan to live a little more modestly than last time around.

    Emergency provisions..



    .. Include a large bottle of Kahlua, very well travelled and hardly touched from the last trip.

    So there it is.

  6. #6
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    Sunny Essex to Calais

    "Ooooh, you don't wanna go to France..."




    Actually yes I do. I've made many trips to the continent now, but have never explored the South of France. I've been promising myself for so long, so the first days are going to be taken up having a look round, particularly with the Gorges du Tarn and Verdon respectively. Thereafter I know not.

    Since I have time on my hands I thought I'd try something a little different. The P&O late night crossing at 2.20 from Dover to Calais was available for the princely sum of £18, so I thought I'd snooze during Sunday and then leave home around midnight, have a nap on the ferry and then I can out knock some dull stuff on the peage until sun up.

    Of course, that was all dandy until I realised Sunday was my dad's birthday, so I take the folks out to Sunday lunch and we get ensconsed, so my long afternoon in bed is truncated to about three hours. Not optimal.

    Nevertheless, undeterred I set off slightly ahead of schedule stopping for a cup of tea at the Food Bus, a grand emporium situated in an exotic location of a Thurrock Industrial estate. It's the setting for Essex County's very own 'The Fast and The Furious'. You can't move for plastic laden Vauxhall Nova GTE's and the like and gents talking of 'doin' a tun firty' down the A127.

    Time to leave that behind, then. The run down the motorway was a breeze, and it was a beautiful warm night. I'm stopped at security on the way to the ferry. Ah, it isn't customs, it's actually G4S, those popular Olympic security folks. "Do you have anything you shouldn't have" says the young lady to me. "Weight problem?" I say. She raises a smile "I mean fixed blade knives etc" she says pointing at a sign. "Oh, no, I'm far too old for all that dear" I respond, and I'm on my way.

    The ferry is very impressive. I'm directed to a bike bay and an affable chap comes and ties the bike down properly. He's careful to make sure I approve of everything before he does it. That's excellent. And its upstairs to very good lounge. Thumbs up to P&O- This is much better than that LD Lines tub I went on a couple of years ago.

    Bikey no mates.



    I get a sofa to relax on but it is seriously noisy; there's an infinite number of coach parties full of yappy 'yoofs', so I don't get much rest. By the time we're in to Calais I'm very tired.

  7. #7
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    And he's off

  8. #8
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    Calais to Lormes

    Off the boat, and with some fresh air to revitalise me it is on the A26 to head south. It's pleasant motoring, and there's lots of motors from the UK heading off into the night in the same direction. I carry on until sunrise. It is stunning, fabulous reds as the sun makes its way over the horizon. So now I'm seriously yawning, so it's time for a rest.
    I stop at a service area with a large parking area and benches, and retire to make myself a nice cup of tea. Tea consumed and a power nap on the bench, and I'm on the road again. Another hour on and I've got a second serious attack of the yawns- this is not good, so I find another parking area, get the mattress out and I'm out for an hour or so. It's about 25 degrees now, there's a cool breeze and its actually not at all unpleasant.



    That's much better. I pop in to see My friend Ronald, for a cheeseburger and some free wifi (or wee fee) as our cousins across the water know it. The young girl there hands me a free cola glass, and it has a 'London 2012' wristband on it. "Pour moi?" I say.. "Yes, of course" she says, her polished English better than mine.
    Nice, but I can't escape the Olympics

    I break away from the motorway now and am heading due South. France is beautiful, and a wonderous place to take the bike.

    As I progress Southwards I overtake a van to be greeted by a Gendarme in a flat pointy sporty Renault nestling in front and over to the right. No fair! I cut short my planned multiple overtake and zip in behind said le rozzer. I have the flip up and have a chuckle. I can see the Gendarme's face in the mirror, he's laughing as he's seen me presumably laughing too. I look in my mirror and wave at the van driver. He's taken it in good heart, too. At least everyone's happy and I gave them all a chuckle.

    The scenery is lovely and I bimble around on the single track roads of the Borgogne...



    At around 5pm I'm totally knackered and ready to stop over. I look at the Garmin POI extras of the European Campsites and find a Municipal site by the water in the town of Lormes a couple of KM away. In I zip. "Avez vous…" I begin… "for you?" he cuts me short with a grin "..but of course! We are nearly full, but we will work this out."

    Twenty minutes later the tent is up at a sublime shady spot, by the lake, but in range of the campsite WiFi. My phone is offered to be charged, and I know where the Supermarche is and how long I've got before they close. How cool is that.



    Off to said shop, a bottle of plonk, some sausage, crackers and even yoghurt for brekkie. Et voila! Things are sorted.
    I despatch the wine and some saussie, watch half of a film on the laptop and hit the hay. I sleep the king of all sleeps and wake at 7am as fresh as you like.

    So that's acommodation, dinner and breakfast with a bottle of vino reddo for the princely sum 16 quid. Lovely. I can dig the outdoor life.




  9. #9
    Excellent read.....I look forward to your next instalment.


  10. #10
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    Im soooo jealous, look forward to the following instalments as I did with the last jaunt you did Roberto.

  11. #11
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    oh yes bring it on

  12. #12
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    C'mon hurry up

    Looking forward to another hit

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by r_atwal View Post
    Looking forward to another hit
    He's a bit selfish IMO. Out there having a good time while we're stuck here waiting to hear all about it!

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Nutty GSER View Post
    He's a bit selfish IMO. Out there having a good time while we're stuck here waiting to hear all about it!
    he's a dirty rotten basket for sure but al least he's sharing

  15. #15
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    Ta folks.. more coming up.. just got to sharpen me fingers..


  16. #16
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    Lormes to Goudet

    The morning is a therapeutic dawdle and I set off just after 10am.

    The riding is just perfect and just gets better as we head south into the hills. I'm running out of words to use to describe how cool it all is. For anyone who hasn't been to France, please do go. It is so, so superb. You need nothing but pleasant demeanour, and simple words such as 'Bonjour', 'Bon', 'Merci', and a few numbers. Smile- people will try to help- they like bikes and bikers. France is twice as big as the UK, and with the same amount of people thereabouts. End result: Clearer roads.

    It is such easy going. I poodle on. I make myself lunch with the remainder of the saussie and some nice bread.

    Lovely scenery..



    Every road is a winner..



    La Puy-en-Velay..



    More single track road magic..



    I pitch up and find a tiny campsite which is empty aside from two Belgian folks and a guy and his Girlfriend in AC-DC T-shirts. It's nice and quiet, next to a babbling brook that leads down into the Loire.

    The lady from Belgium directs me to the mobile Pizzeria which will do for tonight. I wander over and we chat. Can you hear the difference in accent she said between the North and here? This man is from Marseilles she says, referring to the Pizza fella.
    I haven't a clue on the accent front but it's all interesting stuff.

    Late on, about 9.30 I get itchy feet and decide to try and make for a beer. The local hotel is shutting up shop, they see me and pull the curtains. Nice. Not to be deterred, I wander on, until I see a light from somewhere over the bridge of the Loire. Off I scuttle, and it's a creperie, but its open and there are locals there relaxing. 'Beer?' I ask. 'Grimbergen?' replies the old lady. This we like, in fact I love this place.



    All a bit hazy from there on in, as you might expect.

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