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Europe Second Visit

jfink

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As I mentioned at the end of my previous thread (Europe), Chuck and I are headed back to Europe in September. We have begun to plan our visit. We have made flight reservations and are in the process of making a few hotel and ferry reservations. September/October is apparently prime "busy season", like we haven't heard that before.

I found a web site (MotorcycleScotland) that had a ton of information about routes and sights in Scotland. I incorporated the routes into our plan and found central locations to run loops through Scotland. Also, thanks to Stuart K who pointed out many things to watch out for (narrow roads, speed cameras, "average" speed cameras, etc). We will try to follow his advice.

Anyway, here is the first pass plan for our visit to the UK beginning 9/22/2018:
sf1OxByN8IJW_DIPo1LDR18BjIyU42XoEFNKcv0MK_Wdw_n0Ewg3hiXWlZBoH25L2SruMfGDBgCpDYz6-VR=w769-h601-no.jpg


If anyone wants this Garmin routing in either .gdb or .gpx format, let me know.

more to come ...
 
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Texas T

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Average speed camera?

They take a photo at the beginning and end of a route and compute the time/speed difference? Wow.

No plans on taking the ferry over to the IOM and run the course?
 

jfink

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Average speed camera?

They take a photo at the beginning and end of a route and compute the time/speed difference? Wow.

No plans on taking the ferry over to the IOM and run the course?
Stuart, our ex-cop friend from Ireland, says they can be as much as a half hour apart. He says we should be prepared to see people suddenly begin driving like old folk, after speeding by earlier.

We plan to make the Isle of Man. The ferry stops running from Ireland late September, so we will go to Liverpool then ride the ferry from there. And I plan to ride the course (city streets :-)). Here is something you may find interesting from Wikipedia about the Isle of Man speed limits:
Gq68lM4LFO-mkg37dsUzNkkcg5iy8TG_tBptiG9U4ncOBI9m88-ApJIF4AExbBF21mPXwN-OhCPG47GVAOs=w760-h310-no.jpg
 
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jfink

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I found something funny on advrider I have to post. A Scot when asked when is the best time to visit Scotland replied, "that would be one day in August!" The one next to him said, "usually a Wednesday."

I'm still chuckling.
 

jfink

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Where do you store your bike and start your new journey
There are two active European motorcycle entrepreneurs on AdvRider. One is Stefan Knopf (Knoftours.com) and the other is Martin (MotoFeirMe.com). I shipped my Goldwing with Stefan and store it in Heidelberg, German. Chuck bought his bike and stores it with Martin in Kinsale, Ireland.

When we go, one of us has to go to meet the other. The first time, Chuck's wife met him in London and they spent some time there. Afterwards, he rode over, through the Chunnel and France to Heidelberg. He then rode back on the ferry from Roscoff, France to Cork. This time I ride the ferry from Roscoff to Cork and will finish the ride through the Chunnel and France.
 
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Some years ago I rode the Edelweiss Scotland tour. I can't tell from the map if you are riding Applecross pass, but you are in the neighborhood. We rode it toward the coast, then took the coast road up the peninsula, circling around and down to Shieldag for lunch. That section of road is amazing, the scenery is spectacular, the tarmac is good, it's like God's own racetrack.

The Scottish single track roads are a lot of fun too. You get this crazy sensation of speed even at semi-reasonable velocities.

Enjoy, looks like a lot of fun!
 

jfink

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Some years ago I rode the Edelweiss Scotland tour. I can't tell from the map if you are riding Applecross pass, but you are in the neighborhood. We rode it toward the coast, then took the coast road up the peninsula, circling around and down to Shieldag for lunch. That section of road is amazing, the scenery is spectacular, the tarmac is good, it's like God's own racetrack.

The Scottish single track roads are a lot of fun too. You get this crazy sensation of speed even at semi-reasonable velocities.

Enjoy, looks like a lot of fun!
I am not sure if we are riding Applecross Pass, I think we are. If you visit the Motorcycle Scotland website (above) they have 21 routes they recommend (their site could be a little better if they had a picture of the loop as the icon). I think that Applecross is included in their Two Giants loop.

What I did was to consolidate their routes where we could set up and ride day loops from a single location; Inverness (Northern and Central loops) and Moffat (Southern Loops). This is something we have never done, but Scotland roads seem to be set up perfectly for this option.
 

StromXTc

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Thanks jfink. I do lots of touring on this site and on Google maps, will check both places out.

I have visited that site before. Cool. Motoferme
 
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:eek2:I have 3 stops/routes for you guys...
#1 Masham, Yorkshire, England. The Theakstons Old Peculiar Brewery.
#2 Any road in the Lake District. I have stories to tell about that!
#3 Avebury, north of Stonehenge. Early stone monoliths that you can actually walk around and feel the vibes. They are not fenced off. When you head north from Stonehenge, the road has huge monoliths along the way and when you get to Avebury, you can walk around the village and the stone circles.
I will bring my atlas and Avebury book to the next bike night. rh
 
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Yes, Applecross is on the two giants loop. That loop includes the route I described, though it branches off just before the town of Shieldag. It was a decent lunch stop, in case you are looking for one.

I think using Inverness as base camp is a great idea. It's a nice little city, and located so you can access all the good stuff as day rides. John O'Groats is rideable from Inverness, but it is a long day - more than 12 hours as I recall. Moving hotels every day gets old real fast.

Avebury stone circle is interesting, but it's near Bath and well off your route. There's a nice pub there where you can have a meal after walking the circle. No crowds, it's the opposite of Stonehenge.

The British motorcycle museum is just outside Birmingham. It is overwhelming - 900 bikes - but worth a stop if you have to end interest.

I'm riding a similar route through Ireland this summer, but on a bicycle. Probably it's going to take me longer... :) I'll try to post up any interesting findings.
 
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jfink

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Yes, Applecross is on the two giants loop. That loop includes the route I described, though it branches off just before the town of Shieldag. It was a decent lunch stop, in case you are looking for one.

I think using Inverness as base camp is a great idea. It's a nice little city, and located so you can access all the good stuff as day rides. John O'Groats is rideable from Inverness, but it is a long day - more than 12 hours as I recall. Moving hotels every day gets old real fast.

Avebury stone circle is interesting, but it's near Bath and well off your route. There's a nice pub there where you can have a meal after walking the circle. No crowds, it's the opposite of Stonehenge.

The British motorcycle museum is just outside Birmingham. It is overwhelming - 900 bikes - but worth a stop if you have to end interest.

I'm riding a similar route through Ireland this summer, but on a bicycle. Probably it's going to take me longer... :) I'll try to post up any interesting findings.
Thanks, that's great information. It's great what you are doing. I would be interested in hearing from you, as you go.

We are making two day loops from Inverness out of the John O'Groats loop. I don't know the conversion factor, but Basecamp (which is generally overly optimistic) says the first day is 259mi (4h26m) and the second is 312mi (5h49m). Stuart, who is our Motocop friend from Ireland says we can probably add a third again amount of time. Probably some words of wisdom to heed there.

The Moto museum is also something we may be interested in as well, thanks for that. I will put it on our list and depending on timing, we may substitute that visit from some of the riding we are looking at.

Appreciate your feedback.
 

mlinkibikr

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I had a great ride through Scotland years ago. We started in London and rode our bikes right up on to the overnight train to Edinburgh. We thought we would get a bit of sleep, but that kept getting interrupted by the beer cart lady. We couldn't just say no, right? Anyway we arrived in Edinburgh around 5 am, just getting light and colder than kraut. We wasted about half an hour in the mens room, shaving, running the hand driers for heat, stalling, because neither of us wanted to start the ride cold and hungry and just a wee bit hungover.

Happy to say that after than inauspicious start we had a brilliant ride and several great days of sunny weather. Scottish hospitality is epic, the roads are beautiful, and the scenery stunning. Enjoy!

Dave.
 

jfink

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I leave Tuesday 9/18/2018, to head to Germany. Chuck I believe leaves for Ireland on the 20th. Stefan has most things for me ready to go, in Germany. I have a little bike maintenance to do when I get there, but I only plan one day in Germany, then France and then Ireland via Ferry.

We have some things planned out, but other things we are just winging it. After lot's of experience traveling, neither of us gets too excited about having things nailed down. In the past, things either were wrong or changed because we changed our minds. Other than finding a few things for the Wing in the garage, I haven't even started packing yet.

Anyway, here are my Spotwalla tracks if anyone is interested in following along. SPOT TRACKS. Nothing will show up until we actually start traveling, next week. Chuck may post up his tracks here or he may not. On to Europe for the second time.
 

brg

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Looks like a great trip! The wife and I just returned from Ireland last week. We did a 9 day ride along the west coast, aka "wild atlantic way". Stayed in Donegal, Westport, Bunratty, and Killarney. If you need any B&B recommendations, let me know.
 

jfink

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Looks like a great trip! The wife and I just returned from Ireland last week. We did a 9 day ride along the west coast, aka "wild atlantic way". Stayed in Donegal, Westport, Bunratty, and Killarney. If you need any B&B recommendations, let me know.
That sounds incredible and fun. My buddy Chuck is in charge of Ireland, since he has been there twice. We probably won't be staying in B&B's since, well, we're guys. :-) But I never know with Chuck, I may be giving you a shout.
 

StromXTc

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Joe...Will you carry the satellite transmitter on the aircraft? Will it work in flight, or will you, like they say, keep it turned off while in flight?

I had a good time watching Texas t on his coast to coast ride. I'm sure I will ride along with you in Europe too :wave:
 
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I am back from my little Irish bicycle ride. I was mistaken, our route was not that much like yours. We started at Mizen Head (south of Cork), up the Ancient East coast almost to Dublin, across the middle to the west coast, and then up the Wild Atlantic Way, working our way over to Derry and then Malin Head. Looks like you are landing at Cork and riding the Wild Atlantic Way anti-clockwise all the way around. Not sure how much you are interested in riding vs. off the bike things to do, but here’s my input.

Don’t think you are going to Waterford, but it’s an interesting town. The Vikings landed there and more or less started colonizing Ireland. Great walking tour. Stayed at the Waterford Marina Hotel, a decent 3 Star.

Near Cork, Kinsale is pretty and something of a foodie town if you want a better than average meal. Can’t recommend Cobb, it’s touristywith a Titanic themed museum.

I suggest riding down to Mizen Head. It’s the southern most point. The ride is great, and it’s like visiting the buoy in Key West.

On the west coast, Sligo is a lively university town - good music and food there. We stayed at the Clayton hotel, which a friend from the area tells me is the old psychiatric hospital. Seemed like an appropriate place to check in. Kinda fancy, but a treat.

In the Sligo area, I really liked the ride around the north side of Lough Gill on the R286.

North of Sligo, ride the loop around Mullaghmore. It is stunningly beautiful. Great views of the castle owned by Lord Mountbatten. The IRA blew him up during The Troubles. You can visit WB Yeats grave in the area. Let me know if you figure out his epitaph.

We stayed at the Sandhouse Hotel north of Sligo in Rosswowlagh. It’s right on the Atlantic, and a very cool place. Recommend if you need to over nite in that vicinity.

Spend time riding and exploring north and west of Donegal. It is the rugged, wild coast you see in pictures. Worth lots of time.

I liked the city of Derry. Beer and dinner at the Great Wall brewery was a food highlight of the trip. Also recommend a Martin McCrossan walking tour - it finally explains what went on between the Irish and English, and how they got so crosswise with one another.

Not sure how helpful this is to you, but I’m trying!
 

StromXTc

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I am back from my little Irish bicycle ride. I was mistaken, our route was not that much like yours. We started at Mizen Head (south of Cork), up the Ancient East coast almost to Dublin, across the middle to the west coast, and then up the Wild Atlantic Way, working our way over to Derry and then Malin Head. Looks like you are landing at Cork and riding the Wild Atlantic Way anti-clockwise all the way around. Not sure how much you are interested in riding vs. off the bike things to do, but here’s my input.

Don’t think you are going to Waterford, but it’s an interesting town. The Vikings landed there and more or less started colonizing Ireland. Great walking tour. Stayed at the Waterford Marina Hotel, a decent 3 Star.

Near Cork, Kinsale is pretty and something of a foodie town if you want a better than average meal. Can’t recommend Cobb, it’s touristywith a Titanic themed museum.

I suggest riding down to Mizen Head. It’s the southern most point. The ride is great, and it’s like visiting the buoy in Key West.

On the west coast, Sligo is a lively university town - good music and food there. We stayed at the Clayton hotel, which a friend from the area tells me is the old psychiatric hospital. Seemed like an appropriate place to check in. Kinda fancy, but a treat.

In the Sligo area, I really liked the ride around the north side of Lough Gill on the R286.

North of Sligo, ride the loop around Mullaghmore. It is stunningly beautiful. Great views of the castle owned by Lord Mountbatten. The IRA blew him up during The Troubles. You can visit WB Yeats grave in the area. Let me know if you figure out his epitaph.

We stayed at the Sandhouse Hotel north of Sligo in Rosswowlagh. It’s right on the Atlantic, and a very cool place. Recommend if you need to over nite in that vicinity.

Spend time riding and exploring north and west of Donegal. It is the rugged, wild coast you see in pictures. Worth lots of time.

I liked the city of Derry. Beer and dinner at the Great Wall brewery was a food highlight of the trip. Also recommend a Martin McCrossan walking tour - it finally explains what went on between the Irish and English, and how they got so crosswise with one another.

Not sure how helpful this is to you, but I’m trying!
:ponder: sounds thread worthy to me
 

jfink

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Joe...Will you carry the satellite transmitter on the aircraft? Will it work in flight, or will you, like they say, keep it turned off while in flight?

I had a good time watching Texas t on his coast to coast ride. I'm sure I will ride along with you in Europe too :wave:
I will carry it, but leave it off. But, I can't say I have ever tried it on an airplane. I suspect it would not work though. It doesn't work when I am under a few trees, I can't imagine being confined inside a metal cocoon would be any better? I don't think there is much information to be gleaned and I would just be wasting batteries.
 

jfink

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I am back from my little Irish bicycle ride. I was mistaken, our route was not that much like yours. We started at Mizen Head (south of Cork), up the Ancient East coast almost to Dublin, across the middle to the west coast, and then up the Wild Atlantic Way, working our way over to Derry and then Malin Head. Looks like you are landing at Cork and riding the Wild Atlantic Way anti-clockwise all the way around. Not sure how much you are interested in riding vs. off the bike things to do, but here’s my input.

Don’t think you are going to Waterford, but it’s an interesting town. The Vikings landed there and more or less started colonizing Ireland. Great walking tour. Stayed at the Waterford Marina Hotel, a decent 3 Star.

Near Cork, Kinsale is pretty and something of a foodie town if you want a better than average meal. Can’t recommend Cobb, it’s touristywith a Titanic themed museum.

I suggest riding down to Mizen Head. It’s the southern most point. The ride is great, and it’s like visiting the buoy in Key West.

On the west coast, Sligo is a lively university town - good music and food there. We stayed at the Clayton hotel, which a friend from the area tells me is the old psychiatric hospital. Seemed like an appropriate place to check in. Kinda fancy, but a treat.

In the Sligo area, I really liked the ride around the north side of Lough Gill on the R286.

North of Sligo, ride the loop around Mullaghmore. It is stunningly beautiful. Great views of the castle owned by Lord Mountbatten. The IRA blew him up during The Troubles. You can visit WB Yeats grave in the area. Let me know if you figure out his epitaph.

We stayed at the Sandhouse Hotel north of Sligo in Rosswowlagh. It’s right on the Atlantic, and a very cool place. Recommend if you need to over nite in that vicinity.

Spend time riding and exploring north and west of Donegal. It is the rugged, wild coast you see in pictures. Worth lots of time.

I liked the city of Derry. Beer and dinner at the Great Wall brewery was a food highlight of the trip. Also recommend a Martin McCrossan walking tour - it finally explains what went on between the Irish and English, and how they got so crosswise with one another.

Not sure how helpful this is to you, but I’m trying!
Pretty impressive for bicycling. It would be interesting to hear about your trip over a beer sometime.

I passed your information along to my buddy Chuck, who is responsible for the Ireland routes. We will staying at least one night in Kinsale though, and may be we will get the chance to try a little of the food and beer. Thanks for your suggestions.
 

StromXTc

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I will carry it, but leave it off. But, I can't say I have ever tried it on an airplane. I suspect it would not work though. It doesn't work when I am under a few trees, I can't imagine being confined inside a metal cocoon would be any better? I don't think there is much information to be gleaned and I would just be wasting batteries.
Your right about the shielding. Would transmit thru the windows however. Would be cool to see the route across the Atlantic etc. Just thinking aloud. Actually, spotwalla would probably not be able to represent the transatlantic region anyway.
 

jfink

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Your right about the shielding. Would transmit thru the windows however. Would be cool to see the route across the Atlantic etc. Just thinking aloud. Actually, spotwalla would probably not be able to represent the transatlantic region anyway.
If I turn it on and get a point here before I leave, then when I get there, turn it on, it draws a pretty arc which is almost identical to the progress chart on the airplane as we traveled. I don't know if it would have been any different if it actually got a few points along the way?

UxLoCBgY_6SxQmEaOwHgGLCsUo40RWmLfe0vy_HNInEg2ax9hTDe2ZgklOsRHpzIuhbEbBSz6oE53EWL9lO=w830-h501-no.jpg
 

jfink

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I am back from my little Irish bicycle ride. I was mistaken, our route was not that much like yours. We started at Mizen Head (south of Cork), up the Ancient East coast almost to Dublin, across the middle to the west coast, and then up the Wild Atlantic Way, working our way over to Derry and then Malin Head. Looks like you are landing at Cork and riding the Wild Atlantic Way anti-clockwise all the way around. Not sure how much you are interested in riding vs. off the bike things to do, but here’s my input.

Don’t think you are going to Waterford, but it’s an interesting town. The Vikings landed there and more or less started colonizing Ireland. Great walking tour. Stayed at the Waterford Marina Hotel, a decent 3 Star.

Near Cork, Kinsale is pretty and something of a foodie town if you want a better than average meal. Can’t recommend Cobb, it’s touristywith a Titanic themed museum.

I suggest riding down to Mizen Head. It’s the southern most point. The ride is great, and it’s like visiting the buoy in Key West.

On the west coast, Sligo is a lively university town - good music and food there. We stayed at the Clayton hotel, which a friend from the area tells me is the old psychiatric hospital. Seemed like an appropriate place to check in. Kinda fancy, but a treat.

In the Sligo area, I really liked the ride around the north side of Lough Gill on the R286.

North of Sligo, ride the loop around Mullaghmore. It is stunningly beautiful. Great views of the castle owned by Lord Mountbatten. The IRA blew him up during The Troubles. You can visit WB Yeats grave in the area. Let me know if you figure out his epitaph.

We stayed at the Sandhouse Hotel north of Sligo in Rosswowlagh. It’s right on the Atlantic, and a very cool place. Recommend if you need to over nite in that vicinity.

Spend time riding and exploring north and west of Donegal. It is the rugged, wild coast you see in pictures. Worth lots of time.

I liked the city of Derry. Beer and dinner at the Great Wall brewery was a food highlight of the trip. Also recommend a Martin McCrossan walking tour - it finally explains what went on between the Irish and English, and how they got so crosswise with one another.

Not sure how helpful this is to you, but I’m trying!
Chuck responded to my e-mail about your recommendations. He doesn't usually respond to my ride reports unless I write something negative about him. So here goes ... I don't think he reads for comprehension.

I think he believes you were on a motorcycle, perhaps rented from Celtic Rider, since where you stayed, is similar to where he and his wife stayed, when they rented there last year. He was going to take a look at your suggestions. That said, perhaps it is me that is misunderstanding, perhaps you were on a motorcycle?

We are staying with another Martin, (Wheat Wacker on Advrider) in Kinsale, but only for one night. I am sure we will have to travel into Kinsale for dinner (and perhaps a pint or two :)). I am going to bookmark your recommendations, at least for a place to stay, as our ride is pretty flexible right know. But you know how those things go...
 
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Chuck responded to my e-mail about your recommendations. He doesn't usually respond to my ride reports unless I write something negative about him. So here goes ... I don't think he reads for comprehension.

I think he believes you were on a motorcycle, perhaps rented from Celtic Rider, since where you stayed, is similar to where he and his wife stayed, when they rented there last year. He was going to take a look at your suggestions. That said, perhaps it is me that is misunderstanding, perhaps you were on a motorcycle?

We are staying with another Martin, (Wheat Wacker on Advrider) in Kinsale, but only for one night. I am sure we will have to travel into Kinsale for dinner (and perhaps a pint or two :)). I am going to bookmark your recommendations, at least for a place to stay, as our ride is pretty flexible right know. But you know how those things go...
Hi Joe. Definitely a bicycle - we rode it 750 miles. We spent a lot of time on L (local) roads, most of which I would not recommend for a touring motorcycle. I expect your route will use R (regional) and N (national) roads. So expect my route isn’t that relevant to your route.

One more thought I missed. We stayed in Glendalough, which is a national park a bit north of Waterford. It is beautiful there. Riding over the Wicklow Gap is something to do. It’s quite a bit off route for you guys though.
 
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Chuck responded to my e-mail about your recommendations. He doesn't usually respond to my ride reports unless I write something negative about him. So here goes ... I don't think he reads for comprehension.

I think he believes you were on a motorcycle, perhaps rented from Celtic Rider, since where you stayed, is similar to where he and his wife stayed, when they rented there last year. He was going to take a look at your suggestions. That said, perhaps it is me that is misunderstanding, perhaps you were on a motorcycle?

We are staying with another Martin, (Wheat Wacker on Advrider) in Kinsale, but only for one night. I am sure we will have to travel into Kinsale for dinner (and perhaps a pint or two :)). I am going to bookmark your recommendations, at least for a place to stay, as our ride is pretty flexible right know. But you know how those things go...
Well, Joe is partially right in that I do respond to his posts when he gets them wrong. I was very aware that you were on a bicycle and had Joe read what I sent to him he would realize that it was someone else that had done a ride on a motorcycle that I was referring to. That all said, my trip will be on SpotWalla at the following link: https://spotwalla.com/tripViewer.php?id=1b3f55ba052eb92b98&hoursPast=0&showAll=yes

Thanks for the suggestions.
Chuck
 

jfink

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Chuck responded to my e-mail about your recommendations. He doesn't usually respond to my ride reports unless I write something negative about him. So here goes ... I don't think he reads for comprehension.
Well, Joe is partially right in that I do respond to his posts when he gets them wrong. I was very aware that you were on a bicycle and had Joe read what I sent to him he would realize that it was someone else that had done a ride on a motorcycle that I was referring to. That all said, my trip will be on SpotWalla at the following link: https://spotwalla.com/tripViewer.php?id=1b3f55ba052eb92b98&hoursPast=0&showAll=yes

Thanks for the suggestions.
Chuck
See! :thumb:
 
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jfink

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Enjoy yourselves and ride safe. It looks to be a great trip. If you’re not having fun in Ireland, you are doing something wrong!
Absolutely! And thanks for the suggestions, we are milling them over as I write. We have found that while these may not always be fun, they are always an adventure. And the things we find the most difficult are the things we tend to remember and recall the most.

Thanks again,
 

jfink

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I am in Heidelberg, getting ready to head to France. My initial thoughts are to try to make it to Le Mans today (9/20), then on to Roscoff for the ferry tomorrow (9/21). I have a lot of 'back roads' planned to avoid Paris and some of the big cities, but there is no way to avoid all of them.

The flight over was uneventful, but quick. It took less than 10 hours flying time and accommodations were very good. I had the entire row of seats to myself. But even with that I wasn't able to sleep a wink. Fortunately there were a number of movies I hadn't seen. I am not sure what was the cause and what was the effect?

[dead image link - Admin]
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Two observations about Europe so far that stood out in my mind as I landed in Frankfurt;

1) there are no straight roads in Europe. Obviously there are straight roads but the majority seem to wind and curve, even when going straight would have been an easy solution. I suspect it is because these roads were here long before car travel and they were adapted to car travel, and

2) everyone seems to live in the little clumps of towns. There are plenty of forested hills and nicely farmed fields, but all the homes are in little towns 5 or 10km apart. I was struck by this flying in. In the US if folks owned some of the hills or ridges, homes would have been built to overlook the city for the views or out in the fields that they own. But everywhere I could see, I didn't see homes on the hillsides or in the farming fields? Sorry for the haziness of the photo, but hopefully, you can see what I am talking about here.

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On to France!
 
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woodsguy

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:eek2:I wish i was as well off as one of the Tony's so I could make the journey with you knuckleheads.
Have bike, can ride (really) fast and I like good beer. I can also sleep in one star locals! RH
Funds are a definite problem. Trip looks awesome.
 

jfink

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It isn't as expensive as you guys think. In Le Mans right now. Going to the Museum today. If the public streets of the course are open, I may ride that as well. It has been a good start to the trip. The Museum is 7 euros. Found a 'slot' hotel (that's what I am calling it) for 43 euros. Basically a bed, a restroom, Wifi in a very small room. Someone with a lot of stuff would have a hard time finding places to put it. I had a first time experience for dinner last night, I ordered a Filet. I actually cooked it myself at my table on a heated stone. See the smoke rising from the steak? With steak, 2 glasses of wine and desert it came to $33. No tipping.

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Let me apologize right up front for fewer photos this visit. My camera died last visit (something in the lens mechanism). I decided not to replace it and use my phone. That may have been a mistake. I can't simply pull the phone out of my jacket pocket and take photos.

For the first half the day I road small back roads through the French country side. Very beautiful but very slow. The roads were good enough to ride 90 to 100 kph, but about every 7 or 8 miles there was a little town, where the speed limit was 30kmh. Then the roads started getting worse, until I ended up on a road that looked like a good Texas duel sport dirt road. I turned around and found a freeway. Made good time. Rode about 500 miles.

I catch the ferry tonight and ride it to Ireland, where I will meet Chuck at Motofeireme.
 
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StromXTc

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Phone camera will be fine. Don't worry too much about it (pics), just have fun!

Ps, “Stay off the moors! Stick to the road.”

werewolfhed.jpg
 

jfink

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I rode the ferry across from France to Ireland. Because of a recent storm, the seas were fairly rough. I was told 4 meter waves. The Ferry, while VERY large was tossed. I had a cabin and while it did allow some sleep, there were times where I felt I was coming out of the bunk. I met a fellow rider on the ferry who knew Martin Hurley, the guy who stores Chucks motorcycle. I followed him to breakfast after the ferry, then we rode to Martins, where I met Chuck. We stayed at Martin's "rustic" B&B (as Chuck calls it), just outside the town of Kinsale. Kinsale is a cute little town with plenty of good dining and drinking.

We left the following morning and stopped at Mizen Head. Mizen Head is somewhat the equivalent of Key West in the States, purportedly the furthest point in Ireland one can travel. Chuck wasn't too keen on going here, but I insisted and we went. I was happy to stop and enjoy the view, Chuck was less than enthused. We didn't pay to walk to the view, and we didn't stay long.
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We stopped for the night in Listowel at McMahon's, a B&B Hotel. It was rather expensive at 80 euro for a two bed room that wasn't in the best condition. Yesterday we rode the Gap of Dunloe and the Sky Road. Both very unique and beautiful but not necessarily "Gold Wing" friendly. I continue to find myself regretting I didn't bring a waterproof camera that I could snap pictures quickly without having to dig through my luggage for my phone. The Wing is doing well, but I've notice a little bit of an odd noise coming from the rear wheel. I think (hope) it is just the tire wearing, and hope it isn't the rear differential. Goldwings with as much mileage as mine, do at times, have rear differential failure. Not worrying, just keeping an anxious ear.

Chuck wanted to stop at the Cliffs of Mohr. Very touristy, lot's of people, cost 8 euro each to walk a quarter of a mile. While pretty, I was less than impressed. I had left my phone and didn't get any pictures.

We are in Leenaun today. You may ask, where is Leenaun? Good question! One we have asked ourselves. Our intentions yesterday was to make it to the northeastern area of Ireland, but the time just got away from us. We stopped at a very nice Coach House thinking we would just check the price, thinking it was likely to expensive. What we found is that for 50 Euro each we got our own room, plus a very nice breakfast.
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Then the rain moved in today, it is Ireland you know. We are staying an extra day to let the rain pass. We are hopeful that tomorrow will be better. We may cut short the journey north in Ireland and head towards Belfast. There we will catch the ferry across to Liverpool, England.

more to come ...
 
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StromXTc

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:lol2:
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NEXT......

Looking forward to isle of man stuff since I've been watching on tv for the past few years. Loch Ness, scapa flow, Hadrian's Wall, this is gona be good....i hope it's the dry season:lol2:
 
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jfink

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We are headed north from Central Scotland, Moffat. But, I thought I would share some funny things that have happened so far.

Some of you may remember a "Chuck"le from days past, when I asked him, "what are YOU looking at?" He said; "I'm am looking at what I don't want to see!"

We have Sena's so we can talk to each other. Not always a blessing, I am sure Chuck would agree. Yesterday we had a great ride to the coast. Occasionally though we got in behind a little traffic. At one point Chuck said; "Well, at least the slow cars are getting out of the way ... but not very fast!" LOL

And, it is great to be traveling through countries that speak the same language as us. At least most the time. It has been cold and we stopped at McDonalds for coffee. Chuck order a cappuccino and an apple pie, I ordered just a cappuccino. When they were ready, the woman stood behind that counter and announced; "Cappuccino on it's own?" I thought she said; "Cappuccino and a toad?" Chuck thought she said "Cappuccino and a ..." well it started with a "T" and rhymed with bird. :-) Even as I type this I am chuckling.

We will be stopping in Inverness for six days and I will try to update the blog. In the meantime, here is a little place we passed yesterday.

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woodsguy

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Thanks for taking us along, have a question, if the ferry was that rough what keeps the bike from tipping? Are they strapped down.
 

jfink

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We are holed up in Scotland. The last two days have been somewhat wet. I can't say we have it difficult though, these is our digs in Inverness. Our place is in the white apartment building directly in the middle of the picture. It's the top left balcony overlooking the River Ness and the bridge.

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Prior to getting to Inverness we stopped at the Triumph factory in Hinckley England. They have a factory tour but if you are interested you may want to book now. When we arrived we were told they were already booking for January. They do have a very nice museum with lots of interesting "Triumph" memorabilia.

For those who recall the film, it was a Triumph TR6 that Bud Ekins jumped over the fence.
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Recently decomposed
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From Hinckley we made our way up through several national forest on many secondary roads. They get pretty narrow and you never know what you are going to meet.
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This fellow had just finished loading sheep and was turning onto the "main" road. The turn was sharp enough that he barely missed the pole on the left side and the wire above. After about 10 minutes of directed navigation, he and us were on our way.
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One of our stops was on the far western side of Scotland. A fun story here. Chuck decided to pull across the street while I took a couple photos. As he pulled up the flock of sheep eyed him suspiciously. I can understand that. You may be able to make out in the photo that they are slowly walking away, not just a few, but the whole da*n flock. Flock right? Faster and faster until the broke into a trot. Soon, it was a stampede of sheep trying to get as far away as possible. Sort of like what you tell humans to do, trying to get away from a bear. No sheep were harmed in the filming of this photograph, although it still is pretty funny to us. I guess you had to be there.

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The Western Atlantic of Scotland
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The next day we traveled to St. Abbs, to the Atlantic on the Eastern side of Scotland. St. Abbs is a very nice "touristy" town. The tide was out and the boats were sitting in the mud. Good ride with a bunch of bikers out for a day ride. Must have been 50 of them. I think some were surprised to see a Texas plate among them. No pictures of the biker group, didn't stop to take any.
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The folks sitting in the wall were divers out of the water for lunch. I talked briefly with them and asked if it was cold. They said it was cold, even with a dry suit. The water was 19C or 66F. I was cold just looking at them.
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Tomorrow we start riding again, as the weather is supposed to clear up. We will head north for a day ride to John O'Groates and Dunnet Head, the furthest north you can go on Scotland and mainland Britain.
 
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Tourmeister

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I wonder if the boat designers took into account that the boats would be sitting in mud part time versus always floating? That is a whole different set of stresses on the hull.

What were the divers doing? Is there something special to see there or were they working on something?
 

jfink

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I wonder if the boat designers took into account that the boats would be sitting in mud part time versus always floating? That is a whole different set of stresses on the hull.

What were the divers doing? Is there something special to see there or were they working on something?
We have seen the same thing in the Bay Of Fundy in Nova Scotia. There may be more maintenance involved but I don't believe there is any extra consideration in design for sitting in the mud. This country is much to poor to have specially designed fishing boats.

The divers were pleasure diving. In the background of the picture you can see the dive shop they rented from. I didn't ask if there was something special in the area that made diving special.
 
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