There is something special about the little camp ground beside the Vezere river at St Leon
Its simple without trappings but just beautiful.
And a perfect spot to explore the valley.
From where the Verzere meets the Dordogne at Limeuil
To the beautiful town on Montignac
The Vezere valley offers
Wonderful sights to see. Magnificent Chalets and wonderful roads to ride
The Col de Iseran looms high above the Val d’Isre
The Val d’Isre is a Ski Ressort in winter a biker mecca in summer
Then there is the Petite Saint Bernhard that crossed from France to Italy
The Petite links to the Great Saint Bernhard at Aosta,
And at the top of the Pass it crossed into Switzerland
The Great Saint Bernhard runs to the Swiss city of Martigny
There the is a final pass to Chamonix in France
The Col Forclaz with its little hotel in the Pass which is so Swiss
And then in Chamonix stay at the foot of Mount Blanc.
In travelling it’s the little discoveriesThe unexpected placesNot spectacular or plannedBut found by a sense of inquiery
These working windmills were one of these in La Vendee .Windmills were common in France but were destroyed during the Revolution as they sat on strategic hilltops
The grain ground here is organic and in the woodfired oven the perfect bread is baked.Pouzauges is a quaint village and its worth going up past the old castle and its panoramic view
To the mill
Even a donkey knows it’s a place to visit.My second was in MonoucantAnd its annual photographic exhibition each summer.
Primarily an outdoors exhibition with amazing images
I love the surprise these little discoveries while on the road
There was something strange about getting on the Normandy Express in Portsmouth
Was it deja vu?
But yes this fast cat was built in Tasmania Australia and used to cross Bass Strait
It was an omen of positive things to come.
First stop was beautiful Mont St Michel at the northern part of Brittany.
The beautiful coast and farm land around the northern coast
On the west coast
The little coves
And in July it’s mussel season so fresh and sweet
South of Brest there is Camaret sur Mer an historic fishing town
The maritime city still a working port and welcoming to tourists
With beautiful beaches and great motorcycling roads near by.
Bet really it’s the little ports of Brittany that catch my eye.
There are only a few times
That one experiences the feeling
Of sitting on top of the world
The Pic du Midi is one of them.
Up with the eagles at Pic du Midi
Jutting out into the Atlantic
Brittany has much in common with the Celtic cousins in Cornwall and Ireland
The quaint seaside ports also along the coastline
Reflecting the Brittany’s place as Frances finisterre (lands end)
Brest it’s major city
With its ancient citadel apon the hill
A long maritime history
And beautiful beaches
From Riquewihr it’s into the mountains again
Over the Col de la Schlucht
It was to be an eventful trip
Partly by truck
But all life is a learning
I take the by roads rather than the motorways
It has its risks but many rewards
Such as the entrance to the old city in Parthaney
The picturesque Vouvant
Or the amazing boulders at le Rocher Blanant
And onto the little coastal harbours of Brittany
By Brest in Brittany I realised nearly 10,000 km of mainly mountain riding had taken its toll on the front tyre
The left hand side had totally worn out.
But it was holiday time in France.
The Moto Guzzi dealer was shut for holidays.
The big parts store had a tyre but the mechanic was on holidays.
I was searching my phone to find another store
Then divine intervention
This young lady comes out of the store and says “follow me”
Who was I to argue as she climbed onto he Kwaka 1000.
She let me around the back streets of Brest to the Kawasaki dealer
The only shop that was open over the holiday period.
It was kisses all around. A bit of quick French I didn’t understand
Then I was told to take the bike into the workshop and choose the tyre I wanted.
Had to have the pirelli angel to match the divine intervention
Piece of fence chain
Nicely sharpened by being dragged behind a wedding car
Then fallen off on the road to await its victim
The mighty breva II
The sharpened chain slashed the tyre and flew up breaking the rear lens and numberplate cover
The plug that couldn’t last the distance
Need for rescue
Wow now wasn’t that wise to buy European recovery insurance.
Pete and Vikki, fellow guzzista who run a BnB in France
Pete also runs Reboot Guzzi Spares
So wonderful Carole Nash agreed to put me in a hotel for the night and transport myself and the mighty breva the 200 odd km to Pete and Vikki’s Fortified Farm.
Which was my intended destination.
Pete had a near new tyre off a breva in his shed and a lens in stock.
So the next day the might breva was ready to roll. But I was not ready to leave Vikki’s fabulous food and the fantastic company quite yet.
Pete and Vikki’s BnB
One of the reasons you own a Guzzi was encapsulated in Pete’s words when I thanked him for all his help.
“well we are all part of the Guzzi family.”
As it turned out another guzzista from Melbourne arrived that night. 15,000 from home in the middle of France I was drinking red wine with a bloke that lives just the other end of Melbourne from me.
Its a small but special guzzi world.
But not a drop to drink
So it was set camp
And taste the fine wine and unique blend of French and Bavarian cuisine.
In the wonderful medieval charm of Riquewihr, in the Alsace
At La Grappe D’or