Sometimes, as a writer, on rare occasions I find it surprisingly hard to fully express my feelings.
It’s not because I have “writers block” or that I suffer from any vocabulary failure, no, it’s because sometimes the sheer enormity of what I have experienced it beyond the written word…or even the spoken one come to that!
Today is one of those very rare occasions.
Looking back on various blog posts, I have from time to time said things like:
“That was the best,”
Well my dear Blogonaughts, today was beyond any of those!
Today was simply the most challenging, demanding, technically difficult yet satisfying day of motorcycle riding that I have ever experienced.
To say that I am tired this evening, is a major understatement. As a result, the full details of our epic adventure will have to wait for another post; tonight I can’t do it justice, but believe me, there’s a lot to tell!
We did a round trip from Jausiers and largely plugged away in the Italian Alps, just over the border from France.
OK, I’ll be honest, Col hunting; looking as ever for those big high mountain passes!
Only this was different, these weren’t easy get at-able passes, they were high, well off the beaten track and rarely visited.
So yeah, I had to go do them!
Passo Fauniera 2481m 8140ft
Colle Vallonetto 2439m 8002ft
Colle d’Esischie 2370m 7776ft
Colle di Sampeyre 2283m 7491ft
Then to finish off the day, Col Agnel, the highest paved international pass in Europe at 2744m/9003ft and my dear old friend, Col de Vars 2111m/6926ft.
So what was so difficult?
Well, nothing, until I turned onto the road marked “Passo Fauniera” in Demonte a small village in Northern Italy.
Then slowly, slowly, slowly, all hell broke loose!
On the plus side the weather was great, apart from some occasional low swirling cloud, which was just as well because we would have been in serious trouble otherwise!
For tonight I’m reporting 51 miles of narrow roads, poor surface, missing surface, mud, road covered in larch needles, snow, ice, road-works, road closed and an off-road diversion; get the drift?
Oh, nearly forgot to mention, largely no barriers and precipitous drops – but just don’t tell Mrs Dookes!!
Our reward from the Road-Gods was a superb ascent and descent of Col Agnel, followed by a truly crazy assault of Col de Vars, where I’m ashamed to admit I really went for it and actually overtook quite a lot of other motorcycles, not like me at all…..you should have heard Harls roaring as we climbed that last one!
Mileage-wise not big in total, just under 200, it was the middle 51 that was killer ….but like has been said:
“Size really doesn’t matter, it’s what you do with it!”
…and anyway, we survived!
Catch you soon.