A river of wine I saw
As I looked through the cellar door
Where’s my cup?
Where’s a straw?
Or should I lick it from the cellar floor!
Tahbilk winery in the Goulburn Valley region of Victoria is like stepping back in time.
One of Australia’s oldest wine producers.
A nice ride through the hills to get there.
Alone or in company.
An Aussie beach northern NSW
The emblamtic difference between Europe and Australia is the long white sandy beach
With little or no trace of humans
It really can only happen in Australia
And on a warm spring day the whales can be seen off shore breaching and blowing
Smashing their huge trident tails into the water as swim south to Antarctica for summer.
Sunset mid west NSW
The space is overwhelming
Riding nearly 1000 km in a day, on small back roads with little traffic.
The big purple sunset across the open paddocks
But the cherry blossom at Young in the southern highlands a reminder that there is so much of Europe transported here.
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
What is it about Switzerland that takes my breath away
The amazing vistas across the lakes
Amazing mountain passes like the old San Gotthard pass with its cobblestone surface
And party atmosphere at the top
Or village of Gletch where the Furka, Grimsel and Nufenen passes all converge
Maybe it’s the white Glacier topped mountains
Or is is the amazing biker culture that see riders of all types out enjoying the Alps
The goulash soup at the resturaunt at the top of Nufenen pass comes close
But maybe it’s the subtle heartfelt welcome that is so Swiss that makes one say ahhh
The rich sediments
The rich culture washed down
From the high alps
On Sud Tyrol
Looking back to the Stelvio Pass on Sud Tyrol
A high plateau
Sitting between the Alps of Switzerland, Italy and Austria
Rich agricultural land
Its part of Italy
The main language in German
The houses look as is transplanted from Switzerland
And of course through it is the Reschen passage
The Rhone Alps
Sweltering in the heat of the Midi Pyrenees
The monoliths around Grenoble loom large on the skyscape
Past mini gorges
Memories of events never to be repeated
Over high passes
Toward the the highest peak in wester Europe.
The road winds on
To Mount Blanc
Mont Blanc from Chamonix
I must admit to being a bit disappointed by Mont Blanc.
Surrounded by resorts and the massive road infrastructure for the tunnel.
Little did I know at the time, over the border in Italy there was paradise.
Now it’s the Altos Pireneos
On the Spanish side
Green high fields
Bringing back memories of the North West of Spain
The quaint villages
And the friendly Spanish people
Camp where ever like and come and register when your ready.
Following the race route
Up and down
Round and round
Towns and villages
Snakes the Tour d’ France course
Through little villages where the French traditional food culture thrives
In the village of Arreau Christmas tree cake
Rich almond batter
Still baked in the traditional way
Over the open fire
Pretty little villages
Full of life and joie de vivre
Looking to the Picos de Europa from Potes
The Picos epitomise the mountains of North West Spain.
Views of the Picos de Europa
And for the bike rider. The toads to get there.
And camping camping in the lush green of North West Spain
Dartmoor National Park neighbours Cornwall
Famous for the Dartmoor ponies
Beautiful patches of forest
Such as Lydford Gorge
And of course beautiful riding across the moors with a stop for a pint along the way.