Col de I’lseran, France

Its Monday morning, and my 4th day in my new home, “break down town” Kaprun, Austria! I woke up thinking what am I going to explore here today? I’ve already bicycled to a near by lake and scouted out some old spots where “easy company” from world war 2 spent their time. Whats left?

After a little breakfast and discussion with Barbara the hotel owner, I was planning on going up to the local glacier KITZSTEINHORN. When all of a sudden I get the call telling me my Camel will be ready by 1pm.

My time to get to Portugal was waning. My plan, initially,  was to go all the way through the Austrian, Switzerland, and french alps. This break down put a wrench in it. So when I got the call the camel was done.  Sooner then expected! I still had to decide whether or not I want to go through the alps. It essentially would  leave me no time for “anything” in any other country.

Well, Re-route I did, google maps said head south man! Italy’s calling!

Passing through italy’s border was seamless, and it was a stunning ride coming down from he mountain through the E45.

 

 

 

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To tell you the truth I was craving some good ol italian pasta! I found a campsite close to Lago Di Garda, which seemed reasonable in price.

The campsite near the lake wasn’t anything special, but it didn’t have to be. It was a cheaper experience then Austria, and it had to be. The Camel was proving to be costly with all its break downs.

What was cool and a nostalgic moment for me was I was just in the same area two years ago and in most cases you don’t get to repeat rides. I was feeling quite blessed. Two years ago I was sleeping with the donkeys and roosters in Monzambano, Italy!

That being said I had no time to go back to the places I stayed, it was time to move on.

In order to cover some distance, I hit the Motorways. Passing up some beautiful Northern Italian lakes and Milan. I was told I had to ride through Col De I’lseran  in the french alps.

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The motorways also proved to be costly as I was paying as I go. The more mileage on the highways the more money paid. Paying for speed! I felt like I could of easily just of flown or took a train.

Its says 5 1/2 hours, which generally means 7 on a motorcycle if you take breaks. I have no intention of missing the sunset beauty of the alps, so I’ll do it in 5 3/4 :).

I arrived near the base experiencing some amazingly grandiose mountain sides.

 

A wonderful change from the motorway scenery that felt like I could of been anywhere in the world.

The peace started to set in as I continued up the mountains, and then finally making to official border pass.

 

 

As I made it passed the border and climbed higher it was getting more and more difficult to see.

 

I thought what a bummer If i won’t be able to see the sites and Just when I thought it was going to be that foggy the whole time, the world opened up!

I had to take a picture. This doesn’t do it justice, but it can give you an idea as my pictures from Italy to Portugal are lost forever. I’ll explain later:)

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Riding into France and these Alps were quickly reminding me that every motorcycle ride has its crappy roads and sometimes you have to ride those “Highways” to get to these roads………

 

 

Getting to the Col de I’lseron pass was a highlight, even if I had to go through Italy in a day.

As I descended the scenery didn’t disappoint either! The Ski resort I passed through (Valdisere) looked like it would be an epic place to do some shredding.

 

At the base of on the France side of things I found a nice place to camp (Camping Le recluse) 

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Followed by a nice dinner at this contemporary restaurant (Red Ice)

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The host/manager was very welcoming I was the only one in the restaurant but I enjoyed an amazing fondu and some local Liquor.

I went back to the campsite thinking  I still have a lot of ground to cover.  I’m at the farthest west point of France, and as I look at the map going to bed it seems I have to pass it up and ride straight to Spain.

Doesn’t sound bad actually. 🙂

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