Wetter than an otters pockets, and that isn’t the lakes of Como and Garda. The skies had looked ominous over Mont Blanc the night before but shortly after packing up the tent the heavens opened and it was coming down in rods with an added bonus of hail stones which sent me ducking for cover. By the time I made it to Como the man hole covers had popped like the top off a beer, it was Friday night and every hotel was fuller than the street were flooded, I could do nothing but apologies for the string of puddles I left in hotel receptions. When all hope was lost I found a room and took cover to dry out. Next to the hotel was a biker bar serving tennants stout, trying to explain they don’t even drink it in Scotland possibly due to their unsophisticated pallets, the Angalo-Italian sing language didn’t really get the message across. But they did understand my trip and I left them a sticker to track my progress.
After the storm broke I headed across to Garda and followed the road up the Western edge and into South Tirol, unbelievable scenery (the pictures do more than my words ever could) but it all started to get a little bit German and the camp I found was called Das Butlins I think, with one too many sun burnt beer bellies and budgie smugglers. Being only a stones throw to Munich it was a German bikers weekend retreat and I was a proper Sunday afternoon rider, chatting all things bike with the Italian and Germans at the top of the passes. Most of them thought I was crazy and wished me luck.
One bunch of Harley heads said if going that way to stop by Lago Di Fusine, the bluest lake in all of the Alps, while this did turn out to be a bit of an over exaggeration, the dirtiest green lake in all of the Alps would be a better description but may struggle to draw the crowds, but it did send me a link of great connections.
To head that way it left me camping on a farm in Austria, over the road the bar owner and his mates via the translation of his wife recommended Bled once I’d been to Fusine and crossed the boarder into Slovenia.
Waking up feeling on the rough side, must be the water, not the skipping dinner and the strong Austrian larger I headed to dirty green Fusine and was underwhelmed. So off to Bled pretty low in spirits, sat having a coffee overlooking the lake there I had two choices, back to the main road and Ljubljana to find a hotel and wallow, or follow the road further to the second lake? Where’s your spirit of adventure I thought and onwards up the valley I went.
Tearing up the valley behind me and getting bigger in the mirror, well I didn’t have a clue what it was and then with a toot of the horn it was past me and disappearing! The writing on the back was just readable and I wanted to know more and gave the Yellow Peril a fist full of gas to keep up or catch up. At the second lake I finally did. The Slovenian guy riding the tank bike had been 3 years on the road, 123 countries and 230,000 km, after a good chat he gave the Peril the seal of approval and turned around and headed back but recommended heading further up the valley to the waterfall. So of I went.
On the way back from the waterfall the lake was unbelievably beautiful, crystal clear, surrounded by mountains and fish swimming at the edge, I had to stop. Then from out of the woods came the words “you haven’t ridden that thing all the way from England?”. Don a top bloke who had retired to Solvenia, and who wouldn’t it’s mesmerizing, and Bernt a friend from Germany seeking solitude to write his thesis. Within 5 minuets they had invited me for food and beer and offered a bed for the night. Pizzas the size of dustbin lids, an 18 bed chalet in the hills, good company and Dons fantastic stories. A demonstration of fate leading several connections to make a bad start the best day of the trip, if any one of those things hadn’t happened the tale would have been so different. And a true example of the kindness of people. Cheers.