2017 Summer Adventure Part 1, the beginning

Around mid-July I set out on what would turn out to become the best Motorcycle adventure ever. And, the longest! Alone, like last year.

One friend is a candidate for joining in on such adventures but it did not work out with his schedule.

Some Adventure Statistics

  • Travel time: 15 days and some hours during which time I
  • rode through 11 Countries, and
  • more villages than I’d ever be able to name
  • Did 6273 kilometers or 3898 miles of which
  • a greater part on smaller roads, some freeways on transport legs
  • Encountered a few heavy, but limited showers (unlike last year)
  • met or ran into a lot of interesting people, in all countries and
  • feel richer, in life, in experiences, and sights seen
April 3rd this year I got a BMW R1200GS Adventure. It's every bit as good as I hoped it would be.

April 3rd this year I got a BMW R1200GS Adventure. It’s every bit as good as I hoped it would be.

A motorcycle adventure isn’t for everyone

Indeed no, but still for the many. Also those who have not yet tried, but perhaps dream about it. Some doesn’t tire or become exhausted by all the riding. Some do but what you ride matters a whole lot. How you ride, matters equally.

In that respect I was better equipped than before. Stress and you will be stressed. Relax and you will remain relaxed. Still, I wasn’t entirely certain the new bike bought this year would be the right one, for me that is, and a project like this.

Turned out… it was. Times two.. or even three.

Sweden is loaded with twisty backroads, gravel and pavement. I took these "smallways" for the most part

Sweden is loaded with twisty backroads, gravel and pavement. I took these “smallways” for the most part

Route “planning”

To tell you the truth, beyond the first, and half of the second leg, I had no plan. Why should I have a plan? The one thing about motorcycle holiday, that makes it apart from most other forms, is the freedom. The freedom to adapt, to change direction, to improvise.

Still, I did have some goals with this expedition;

  • Visit a friend and master musician in Southern Sweden
  • Possibly take a ferry across and ride the eastern part of Germany and
  • over into and down south through Poland to
  • Zakopane and from there over the Tatra mountains to Slovakia
  • Carry on via Austria, over the Eastern Alps
  • Ride mountain passes in the Dolomites plus some Austrian passes
  • If time and feeling like it, carry on westwards to France and the French Alps

But before that – Sweden

Last year I took E6 (Europe road 6) all through the country. This is pretty boring, one gets to see little or nothing. So this year the gig was, take it easy, take the “smallways”. See and experience more of “grannelandet” (Swedish for a neighboring country).

Our countries are connected with lots of roads in the “smallways spectrum”. Some in fact so small you hardly notice that you’ve crossed the border. This year I took one of the smaller, not the most exciting in the beginning but once over the border I started to zig-zag.

What it looks like when you take one of the older, smaller roads across the border

What it looks like when you take one of the older, smaller roads across the border

Good weather, great adventure start!

It always helps, starting off on an adventure in sun and decent summer weather. Makes for more enchantments, and more pleasant riding, especially on backroads. While heading south I ventured through greater parts of the Swedish countryside and areas never seen before. Much thanks to the good weather it was indeed a great experience.

Swedish countryside seen from backroads, here on gravel which my bike handles very well even with luggage.

Swedish countryside seen from backroads, here on gravel which my bike handles very well even with luggage.

Sweden has approximately double the population of Norway. People live pretty widespread, even if, like everywhere else, a lot live in cities. As a consequence, Swedish countryside is a lot less deserted than you might expect. Especially in the southern regions which is excellent farmlands.

Taking a break, at a sort of surprise one definitely will miss by not taking smallroads.

Taking a break, at a sort of surprise one definitely will miss by not taking smallroads.

When you take time – it flies

Having so much fun on Swedish backroads I spend the greater part of the day. Later in the afternoon I was forced back on bigger roads. But keeping the pace reasonably down and avoid stress still made it an enjoyable ride all the way.

Pretty nice riding here, the route meant a limited number of miles on Europe roads (Freeways).

Pretty nice riding here, the route meant a limited number of miles on Europe roads (Freeways).

Early evening I met my Swedish friend in the charming little southern city of Landskrona. Parked the bike in my friend’s garden and with that day 1 of the adventure came to a pleasant close πŸ™‚

My new motorcycle had passed the test as a long haul machine. A great day's worth of experiences indeed!

My new motorcycle had passed the test as a long haul machine. A great day’s worth of experiences indeed!

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