Reflecting on the Swiss Alps

Adventure, Europe, Motorbikes, photography, Poetry, Switzerland
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View from Furker pass looking across the Valley to the Grimsel

The ride down Furker Pass and up the Grimsel has to be one of the most beautiful and exhilarating rides available.

Down Furker

Past the wall of the Rhone Glacier

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Looking across at the Rhone Glacier from the Grimsel 

Through the little village of Gletsch

Then up the Grimsel

Winding up to the lake at the top of Grimsel Pass

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Grimsel Guest house under repair

If that is not enough

Turn around

Down the Grimsel

Then up the Nufenen PassOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

What a day of riding it was.

In a few months I will be back in Europe

On the Mighty Breva II

More mountain passes some old some revisited.

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Last stop in Switzerland for this trip

Adventure, Europe, history, Motorbikes, photography, Switzerland, travel

From Lauterbrunnen and Grindelwald you can see the Aletsch Glacier. Running over the mountains.

View of Aletsch Glacier from Lauterbrunnen

And Grindelwald

But, in time, it may be lost a sad loss both in beauty and the impact on the Alps.

North of Interlaken the valley runs north to the Jungfrau region and the Glacier.

Past lakes

And beautiful waterfalls

In Grindelwald

In Lauterbrunnen

But in time as the Glacier melts the villages, the lakes, the waterfalls will in turn be reshaped.

Maloja Pass Mudslide

Adventure, Europe, Italy, Motorbikes, photography, Switzerland, travel

The Alps are a beautiful but precipitous place.

The mudslide is a reminder of the both the beauty and power of nature.

Albula Pass

Shifting rocks above the Pass

It takes my thoughts drift back to the indigenous Australians and their relationship to land.

No deity in the heavens it’s is the land that nurtures and provides. It’s the land that has wrath.

Story of land

So as I sit in the Vezere a place where humanity survived the ice age. I can reflect on the power of nature.

Humanity may try to destroy itself through nuclear war or climate change or our greed and averice nature will continue.

My heart goes out to those who lost lives and property in the beautiful Swiss Italian border country.

Castles in the sky not just high Alps – Switzerland part 3

Adventure, Europe, history, Motorbikes, photography, Switzerland, travel, Uncategorized

If you follow some narrow winding roads through fields of maize, past sheep and cattle quietly grazing, near the Aara River,  you find the village of Habsburg and Schloss Habsburg.

Castle Habsburg

The starting place in 1025 for a family that would dominate Europe and its colonies for almost a millennium- the Habsburg Family.

The Schloss Habsburg is one of the many castles that dot the Swiss countryside.

Schloss Lenzburg in sight of Habsburg tower is an impressive example.

Castle Lenzburg

Perched on hilltops

Castle Wildegg

And on lake sides

Castle Thun

The villages and old towns have their own special charms.

Decorated building eves and old town entrance in Aarau

Monument in old Lenzburg

Looking across the Rhine to old Laufenburg in Switzerland from Germany

My time in Switzerland, this trip, is drawing to a close but I have enjoyed amazing Alpine riding, exploring aspects of a rich history and found a welcoming motorcycle culture.

Thursday nights at Trimbach bei Olten

All types of bikes some very exotic

Adendum

Bridge to old centre of Olten

The old sections of Aarau and Olten were built in a circle formation.

The back walls of the rows of buildings forming a barricade with gated entrances.

Old main gate in Aarau

Curved walls in Olten

The Bergennen at Seebodenalp

Adventure, Europe, history, Motorbikes, photography, Switzerland, travel

Program for the historic meet

The Bergennen or hill climb race at Seebodenalp is a 500 metre climb over a 5 km track.

The top of the track providing views over Kussnacht am Rigi.

It was an event for historic bikes and some cars

Endurance racing Laverda

Studibaker hill climber from yesteryear

The pits were perched atop the track

With some lovingly restored bikes.

And sidecars

A different day at the races!

High peaks, glaciers, lakes and fine twisty roads this must be the Swiss Alps – revisited

Adventure, Europe, Motorbikes, photography, Switzerland, travel

WARNING

Alpine roads and scenery and culture are known to cause Alpinitis, a disease that creates an almost uncontrollable urge to return. The only relief is more Alpine riding, which results in reinfection.

This warning sits in small print on the first page of the book Motorcycle Journeys Through The Alps and beyond

September 2016, I had my first taste of the Alps.
I hadn’t noticed the onset of Alpinitis but in February this year I felt compelled to do a five day ride in the Australian Alps

The Bonang Highway, 105 kms of twisty road

But it wasn’t enough and here I am again in the Swiss Alps reinfecting myself.

The piecemealadventurer at the top of St Gotthard Pass

Up amongst the glaciers.

Looking

Across the valley to the next twisty climb

Looking at Grimsel Pass from Furka Pass

The climb up old St Gotthard pass

Down at the switch backs just conquered

Old roads

The cobbled surface of the old St Gotthard pass road

And fast sleek sweepers

Fast corner on the Susten Pass

The past the lakes

Looking down

Looking across

Days in the very high passes

Nufenpass the highest in the Swiss Alps at neatly 2,500 metres

Grimsel

Furka, Susten and St Gotthard

I’ve been reinfected and I’m glad there is only one response. More Alpine riding!

Adendum

To ensure the total reinfection I have was drawn to the tortuously narrow Pragel Pass.

And its partner the Klausen.

There is no end to the beauty of these mountains.

Riding the Swiss Alps

Adventure, Motorbikes, photography, Poetry, Switzerland, travel

High peaks

Touch the sky

Barren

Bare

Rocky pinnacles

Cold icy peaks

Glacial

Old as time

Witnesses to time immemorial

Sliced by roads

Fast roads

Curvy roads

Hairpins

Switch backs

Smooth sweepers

Clear sky’s on in late September

But in the mountains

Weather is changeable

Keep an ear out for thunder

But today

Hear the thunder bikes

Moto Guzzi

Rolling back through the Alps from Mandello.

The mighty breva at Maloja pass