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Alps Extreme - The Alps, done the proper way! (4AE1703)

Monday, July, 24nd, 2017 | Wim Doms / Pierre Baumgärtner | Europe

Riding day 6 - Toblach to Mieming - The final hairpins over Timmelsjoch!

A glorious morning over Toblach gave us a final salute before heading back to Mieming. This view may well go down in the books as the best one on the whole tour. Bye bye Monte Rota, was a pleasure to see you again.
Think Alps Extreme would end quietly? Nope! Two more major pass roads to go. Jaufenpass was up first.
And up on Timmelsjoch, the final pass of Alps Extreme has something in store for all us petrolhead bikers. A wonderful motorcycle museum as the last highlight. Couldn't be more fitting.
And so the whole group made it back to the center of the motorcycling universe: the Edelweiss garage, where proud owner and founder Werner came to visit us in his vintage old sidecar. Thank you Werner!
And let's end this with one last view perfectly summing up our last week... Doesn't need much comment to understand how great it is to ride the Alps.
And here they are. The best (and we seriously mean the best) bunch of people ever to have wandered around the Alps! From Venezuela to Idaho, from India to New South Wales down under, it has been a pleasure for the German and the Belgian to guide you guys over our favourite roads! Hope to see you again on another Edelweiss tour! Safe travels!

Riding day 5 - Levico Terme to Toblach - Seven passes? All in a day at the office in the Dolomites!

Our day in the Dolomites started with quite a bit of ominous skies... up on Passo Manghen, for the first time on this tour, people were starting to talk about - whisper it - rain gear!
But on top of Passo di Rolle, all thoughts of rain were far away again... it can change so quickly up here in the mountains.
And let's be honest... were else than in the Dolomites do you get to look at views like this?
Or this, for that matter... sure enough, going down Passo di Giau, rain was finally becoming a part of this Alps Extreme! Well, just about 60 minutes on a six riding day tour... can't really complain, can we?
And what do you do when all of a sudden you really have to ride through the rain? Very simple, and all resumed in this picture at Lago Misurina.
Just about 30 minutes to go from there to a place like this... aah, the view from Monte Rota in Toblach... nothing can beat it!

Riding day 4 - A day around the lake. Resting, or riding for the diehards

When these tourguides say they take the backroads towards Lake Garda, they really mean the backroads! Sometimes just wide enough for a big bike, but that is all the space we need.
And while some of our guests were enjoying a rest day around the lake at Levico Terme, the riders found a lake as well. A big one! Bongiorno Lago di Garda! (Horrible traffic around the lake conveniently left out of this picture
Tsss... popping wheelies to impress in front of the ladies... now that is something a tourguide would never do, right?
Going up to Capovalle, this was about the only straight bit in a 40 km stretch. What a crazy road! After all those corners, time to head for some wonderful homemade pasta in Idro, and back to our rest day location in Levico Terme for some more Italian food
We told you there would be a bit of Italian food involved tonight...
And being the brave man he is, Brad went for the very serious Beef steak (yes, with a capital B). Served on a searing hot lava stone, and cooked to your own preference. And he posed in very distinguished fashion as well.

Riding day 3 - Monte Penegal to Levico Terme - Italian traffic baby! And Italian temperatures too!

The decision about no rain on this tour still stands, so after a few last morning pictures, briefing for this all Italian riding day was done outside on top of Monte Penegal.
Two extra participants were listening very closely to all the briefing tips and explanations. But they were not allowed on a bike in the end. Reason? Mèèh, we don't communicate on reasons.
Is it just us, or have we just been riding past millions after millions after millions after millions and then a few more apple trees today? Wow... you wonder where all that cider goes
The whole group met each other for a wonderful Italian lunch in the pretty town of Molveno. Prosciutto, tagliatelle al porcini, tortellini... we're clearly in the home of proper Italian delicacies on this part of Alps Extreme. Yummie!
And in the afternoon, the Italian need for speed just reared its head. The road up to Monte Bondone on this Alps Extreme will go down as one of the most hilarious, properly good and serious rides on any Edelweiss tour. Thank you to all our riders for making it such a wonderful motorcycling afternoon, before heading into the tropical temperatures of Levico Terme. We're halfway through our adventure, but there is much more to come!

Riding day 2 - Fiss to Monte Penegal - The mother road... and... she said YES!!

After a quick hop into Switzerland and back (one extra country check!), the group went to church! Although getting in may have been a bit of a problem...
And then at the first coffee stop, Rhoan and Brad decided to go very manly on the drinks!
And for those of you wondering why they call this place in the town square of Glurns "the green tree"...
Well: this is why!
And then it was time to cross this one off the bucket list: Passo dello Stelvio, Stilfserjoch for the German speaking amongst us... the Mother Road, and what a glorious day it was to ride up the 48 switchbacks in the prettiest scenery of them all! Congratulations guys!
It is one hell of a ride up!
On top of Stelvio, we thought that Bruno's legendary and properly world famous saucage stand really was the highlight to see. And it was. But this time.... well... read on until the end of this day to find out more about the REAL Stelvio highlight on this Alps Extreme Tour.
In the mean time (and to keep you waiting a little longer the group went from Stelvio straight to the maybe even more challenging ride up Passo Gavia.
Some riding days, you wish they would just never end...
But even the best ones do end. But not just anyway. This one ended right here: all the way up on Monte Penegal, with the most breathtaking views to end the day. Cheers everyone!
But... ladies and gentlemen... will we all please rise for the real, proper, serious, wonderful highlight of Alps Extreme? While a bunch of people were eating a world famous saucage at Bruno's... Brad took Desiree up to a very mysterious walk to the view of the pass road. And there... this happened! A very, very rare occasion on an Edelweiss tour, but... she said YES!! Congratulations you two, from the whole group, from both your tourguides, and from everyone in the Edelweiss-team!

Riding day 1 - Mieming to Fiss - Mountains ahoy!

Under perfect blue skies, it was time to leave Mieming in the morning. Never seen a group so motivated and excited to get going. We could have left way before any coffee place would have been open.
After morning briefing and the first tiny hidden roads in the Alps, we arrived just at five past Strudel here in Kühtai.
And Strudeltime it was, straight into the deep end! Well, when in Austria...
And if you ever wondered why this place has the German for "cow" in its name...
Just before lunch, Pierre and Wim took all the guests to Hochimst. But hang on, aren't we supposed to be riding bikes?
Well, a skilift may be very slow, but it does get you to see some views you can not reach on a motorcycle.
So how do we get back down the mountain then? Well... the FAST way! Using nothing but gravity and some very funky Austrian engineering. Some tourguides were rumoured to carry a serious advantage on the gravity-aspect...
The noise may not be anywhere near that of a growling Ducati, but still... pretty exciting ride!
After sliding down a mountain in a luge, time to walk off one. Well, on a spectacular viewing platform, that is.
And then on to the last highlight of the first riding day. Kaunertal Gletscherstrasse, 25 kilometres of pure driving extasy, all the way up,to the glacier on the Austrian-Italian border. Riding heaven, is what it was.
Mind you, the views riding back down the mountain aren't exactly shabby either... look at our group go!
Hairpins you said? We're doing those! Mind you, this is just a very small warmup for what awaits us tomorrow...
Some nice fast sweepers left coming down the hill, and then...
... you end up in a place like this. These Alps have a habit of throwing one gorgeous view after another at you. The mountain village of Fiss welcomed us with a wonderful summer's evening. With a Belgian and a German tourguide on board, there may be some beers involved. Cheers guys, thank you for a wonderful first day on Alps Extreme!
Sure enough... didn't take long to find a beer! (Or two)

Arrival day - Mieming

The bikes are here. The sun is out. The tourguides are ready. Our guests will arrive during the day, and this evening we all meet for welcome briefing. Always an exciting atmosphere just before tour start.
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