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More of this please. It's not enough that you write numerous articles on bikes I desire, but will never afford. Now I am forced to read details of trips I dream of as well! It's nice to live vicariously as I sit in my cell-oops cubicle-at work. I just need to reimind myself that the "cell" time will someday allow both the bikes and trips. Nice article and well written. Thanks.
 

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Makes me wish I'd owned a bike when I was stationed in Europe. I'm all jealous and stuff now!



Yeah! Where IS Danielle?
 

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Friendly French People???

I liked this article. It was a great change in pace.

I just can't help thinking about the comments made concerning the friendliness of the French people. I mean, isn't it our duty - as Americans - to bash the French whenever possible?

I'm doing my part:

Why will France never get the Olympics? Their proposed slogan is: "Play Your Stupid Little Games And Leave Us Alone!"
 

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Great article about one of the best parts of motorcycling.



Just pick a place on the map and go there, carving some curves along the way, and if you see a road (pavement optional) that looks good--ride it.
 

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Really enjoyed the article, primarily as I am fortunate enough to live in the area you describe.



Living in Geneva, Switzerland, the Mt Blanc is a short 45 min sprint from my door. Riding home from work in the evenings, I sometimes find myself taking the "long" way home, and ride up over the Jura mountains. I can't imagine a better way to end a day.



All I could really add to your article is that this area is really a place that must be experienced on a bike. Some small points, you will find the quality of the roads to be better in Switzerland than both France and Italy. As an example, ride the road from Chamonix to Martigny, and as you pass the border, you go from a narrow and very damaged road to a wide and smooth one.



Anyway, it doesn't really matter wich route you choose, as they are all great. I discover a new one every weekend I go riding.



Regards,



Henrik
 

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Now you know why I had to buy a bike while stationed over here in Belgium. Even if the speedometer is in KPH, ya can't beat the riding, and even the people driving cages are polite to riders. hmm. Now that I think about it, I'm gonna ride right now.
 

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As a European with several motorcycle trips behind me in many different countries in Europe I have to agree that it is easy to travel by bike in Europe, the general public is normally friendly (even in France), and the distances are not too great between alps, mediterranean sea or whatever you prefer. I once went from Mediterranean to Baltic Sea in 22 hours. You don't have to be hesitant about most countries of the old eastern block. Poland, Czech republic, Hungary, Slovenia for instance is no problem to ride in. My personal favourite country to ride a bike in, has to be Scotland. The scenery is as good as in the alps, the roads are super (not that they're bad in the alps) and the people are great. For you Americans there is the advantage of language, and of them being more used to your silly units (hey, isn't it time to realise that the French did something good when they invented the metric system?)



A country that is supposed to be just as great to ride in (but slightly more expensive) is Norway, where I have never set my foot on two wheels, so to speak. I have heard great things, and seen great pictures, about the roads and scenery there.



One day I hope to go to America for a biking holiday, I can certainly recommend you guys to come here. Welcome!
 

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Well, you could not be more right. Excepting the flat eastern mainland all of Norway could be seen as a statement of the sheer geniusness of nature.



Eye-popping wonders abound and the roads climb in the most illogical places, one can often ride all day only meeting a few cars every other hour. The small mountain passes with the odd goats in the road, riding above the clouds, twisting along the fjords, seeing waterfalls, damping wet greenery, snow on the peaks and waving the thumb skyhigh when meeting other riders. I've had tours where the chills on the back just wouldn't stop for several hours! Going at 40 km/h just to absorb everything..



The roads are not too good, but mostly usable. Some holes to be expected when going around blind corners at small roads, so take care. We do not have any freeway, maximum legal speed is 90 km/h and law enforcment are strict. Travelling from A to B is booring, take the sideways and use the time available. People are wery friendly and follow the traffic rules, all in all a very safe and sound country to travel in. Except the prices, which is about the highest in Europe. But it should be worth it.



Andreas / Norway
 

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Re: Friendly French People???

France is a terrific country in which to travel on two wheels. The French, at least in rural areas, are extremely friendly and accommodating, especially if one keeps the I'm-from-the-US-where's-the-Walmart attitude in check.
 

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Well the name probably gives it away, but I cannot compare riding here in Europe with the US, but it certainly beats the UK - although the TT is worth it. Useful info I can offer from here in Geneva is that the Simplon Pass is currently having some resurfacing work done, should be good later in summer as it is very different from typical passes with more sweeping than nadgery stuff.



A little road just north-east of geneva is worth a look if you are here, it leads up to St Cergue from Nyon (on the coast? of the lake)in the Jura at about 1500m (5000ft?)up, it has just been resurfaced and is biking heaven, although the swiss cops know that too, they are not there when I go for a blast during my lunch break!!



 

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Re: Friendly French People???

Oui mon amis, French citizens are very friendly if you try to avoid Paris. Being French myself (living in the USA for 19 years now) I can only recommend that you go there and experience the "joie de vivre" in France. FYI, wheelies, burnouts etc... are not agains the law as long as you respect the driving code and you stay sober... I just got back from a 2 weeks trip through the Alps with a Bandit 1200 what a rush. Try France for your next vacation and become a US frog

Au Revoir & a Bientot on the road

Philippe
 

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Have you tried the road from Albertville to Chamonix? It's the N212 , I just got back from it last week, it rained a little but what a blast it was. Loved Nyon as well my wife and I rode to St Louis near Basel stay the night and then went through the Black Forest roads and back to Geneve and to Montreux for the Jazz Festival.



A bientot
 

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Bonjour Henrik, I can see that you are leaning toward the "Petit Suisse" roads Ha Ha, well I agree that that particular road is great N 506 that is... How do you like the view from the Col des Montets? awesom road to ride boardered by many vinyards toward Martigny. Well it's all back to the US now for me but next year I will be back!

 

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I am glad that you gentlemen are loving our wonderful France, we ride on the right side (Just in case some American wondered) the Cheese & Wine stops are divine as well, after all Hackfu was in Haute Savoie and must had some good Cheese with all the Wine about how good we treat our fellow bikers here in France. Considering that for every 10 French Citizen 8 of them own a two wheels vehicule it is no wonder that there is a great awareness about motor-cycles, it's part of our culture. Be cool, blend-in and don't be loud and obnoxious, I garantie you'll have a great time. Au Revoir
 
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