ABR readers have been in touch to tell us all about their latest adventures.
Around Aus on a V-Strom
I noticed your piece in the magazine about photos, don’t know if these are of any use, but these are some of my May/June 9,500-mile solo trip around Aus on a hired Suzuki 650 V-Strom.
The first time I saw Adventure Bike Rider at Malta International Airport my attention was attracted by the cover title ‘Britain’s 17 Highest Passes’, because we (my husband Peter who is a rider and I) plan to ride to England, Scotland and Ireland next year on our Yamaha Super Ténéré.
Our first adventure tour on a motorcycle was three years ago when we toured in the Balkans (we are from Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria). We were impressed by the way you really feel everything that surrounds you to inhale the aromas in the air, to feel the rebound of the road on your foot. On this trip, the most exciting road that we rode was from Dubrovnik, Croatia to Kotor, Montenegro.
During the summer 2014, we went to Nordkapp, Norway. 6,275-miles from Sofia to there for 17 days, we crossed 15 countries, reached three seas, and two dreams came true for us; we rode the Atlantic Ocean Road and Trollstigen.
This summer, during July we explored Spain and Portugal. On the way there we realised another dream, the Stelvio Pass. Absolutely incredible road, with incredible climbs to dizzying views from 2,750m.
So, within 12 months we rode to the north (Nordkapp), west (Cabo da Roca, Portugal) and at the southernmost point of Europe (Tarifa, Spain). Finally, I would like to thank your magazine that is not only interesting but also very useful reading.
Iveta Todorova – Sofia, Bulgaria
Don’t worry about a thing
Hi there adventure bike riders, I have recently embarked on a trip around Europe. While on the trip I needed tyres so while in Slovenia I emailed BMW in Split, Croatia to enquire about tyres and received a very good response. I continued my journey into Split and rang them up direct. The response was absolutely second to none.
I arrived at the BMW garage at about 10 in the morning and they explained that they could fit my tyres at about four in the afternoon, or I could go direct to the tyre people about half a mile away and they would fit them there and then. I decided to go to the tyre people, Katic V.T.O in Split, and they had fitted my tyres within 40 mins, charging me 100 quid
less than in the UK. I just wanted to point out that if you are on a big trip and anything does go wrong it can always be fixed and anyone who has any doubts about a trip, be it a short trip to France or a big one further away, you don’t have to worry. Stuff can always be sorted!
My first time in Europe
My wife and some friends agreed on a joint holiday this summer to Denia near Valencia on the east coast of Spain. Having traded in my Triumph Sprint for a BMW GS1200 I took the opportunity to suggest that I ride there while they all flew, my first ever trip to Europe on a bike. The plan was for me to go down with my enthusiastic 15-year-old son and come back with his less enthusiastic twin sister. Plans were made, no hotels were booked, but our target was Pau on the first night and Denia by the second day.
We got off the ferry in St Malo in the sunshine and started off slow to get accustomed to riding on the right. By midday, the rain started, and it continued hard and fast, as did the traffic jams. By 3:30 pm we had enough so tried to find a hotel in Bordeaux. We tried eight hotels, but all were booked, so we decided to carry on. Biking in torrential rain has never been fun, but we soldiered on, my son not offering a word of complaint. We eventually arrived in Pau at 9:15 pm and managed to get a room. A hot shower and a well-deserved beer awaited.
An early start in the morning saw the rain subside, and we rode into the mountains where the sun burst through. This was more like what I was expecting, with glorious views across the Spanish hills. Eventually, we met up with the rest of the group exhausted but feeling like we had really achieved something special.
Questions were asked of my son and whether he wanted to fly back or ride back with me, to my surprise he stuck with the bike! For the return journey, I decided to book hotels and we had a glorious ride back to St Malo. On the ferry we shared stories with other bikers, all had learnt the same lessons; not too far each day and take time out for the views. All in all, it was a great time. Just in the process of planning the next European experience!