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Ride outsTrips


Posted on 05/05/2010 at 11:28 pm by / 0

This post is a translation of an article which was published in the Spanish magazine “La Moto” in May 2010. It’s a “summary” of the first 100.000km with my SV. Some pics might also be published in other posts.


I started getting interested in bikes when I was 14, but it wouldn’t be until 10 years later that I decided to take the riding test and buy my first bike, a Kawasaki ZZR, with the excuse to get quicker to work and back home.

I bought it second hand with 20000km and sold it 3 years later with 80000km.

In May 2005 I bought my second and current bike, a Suzuki SV650S, I chose her for her look (aesthetically I love RR bikes, but I’m too slow for them 😉 ) and for her V-twin personality.

Apart from using her to commute daily, I also love to go for ride-outs on Sundays, but when I most enjoy my bike is traveling.

The truth is that this bike is not the most adequate for traveling, its riding position isn’t the most comfortable, and less for my 1.60m tall. But anyway, I just get used to her, and to be honest, it is a really fun bike to ride, and I can only speak positive about her reliability.

So in May 2005 we decided to try her on going for a week-end in the Biker Camping of Anzanigo. The trip was very tough on my husband who was following me on his 1000cc RR bike, at a maximum speed of 108km/h as my bike was still running-in.

Mallos de Riglos 2005

On the way back it was even worse, as it took us 11 hours to cover the 350km… Not because of the maximum speed, but because of the average speed, as I was stopping every now and then to practice my second hobby: taking pictures… We must admit that this area of the Pre-Pyrenees (Aragon and Catalonia) is really photogenic.

That same year, in order to be sure to try her on well, and as summer arrived, we went to my first bikes rally, also in the Aragon Pyrenees. And then I had a holiday of “a few” kilometres, first by myself to visit friends in Marseille and Lyon, and then again with my husband, down to Asturias and Galicia (Ferrol and Sanxenxo).

Isla de la Toja 2005

In the following years we went for a few more trips, mainly in Spain (in no particular order and some places several times: Cazorla, Almeria, Madrid, Valencia for SBK race, Teruel…), and of course Asturias and Galicia where we go every summer, always through the same roads in the Pre-Pyrenees. Sometimes we stopped in that area, on the Spanish side (Biescas)

On our way to Bielsa 2008

or French side (this year Cauterets, going through many passes of the “Tour de France”).

on our way to the Col d’Aspin – 2008

Mirador del Fito – Asturias 2009

Mirador de San Andrés de Teixido – Galicia 2009

We also had some trip to the neighbouring country, around Lyon, with a compulsory stop in the lovely area of Millau and the “Gorges du Tarn”, as my chain had given up (should have been changed before the trip!).

Viaduct of Millau – 2007

For traveling we bought saddlebags and when going both on my bike, we also have a tank bag (I can’t use it when riding my bike as the tank is high and large, and I don’t get well to the handlebars then).

Most of the trips were between May and September, for long week-ends or holidays. When traveling we always try to get through secondary twisty roads, taking our time, enjoying the road, the landscapes and stopping every time we can (and my husband lets me) to take pictures. Although on the way back from holidays, we usually take less time through boring motorways.

Most of the trips I rode my bike myself, but I also tried the back seat sometimes on long trips, as for traveling together my husband’s bike back seat is absolutely a no go!  The position on the back seat of the SV is quite straight and comfortable, but on long trips it can start being a little uncomfortable after a few hours.

During those 4 years, I also went for a few ride-outs at the week-end, around Catalonia, South around Tarragona, North around Gerona, in groups, with my husband or by myself, riding or on the back seat. The important thing being enjoying the road, the scenery, and the company (always tailing when in group…).

la Llosa del Cavall, Catalonia – 2009

On our way to la Bonaigua – 2009

During those 100000km, I had no mechanical issue with the bike, I had one electrical issue (the main fuse blew, due to a shortcircuit caused by the antitheft chain rubbing against a cable under the back seat…), and apart from the usual servicing, I changed the rear shock absorber for a better one, and the front fork springs. Until now I’ve never changed a single bulb. And the battery is still the original one.

The only “plus” I put are the heated grip, which are really useful for winter trips.

30/01/2010 100.000km

To conclude, in 100000km covered with her, with sun, heat, rain or cold, I can’t complain at all about her behaviour. It is a very fun bike to ride, maybe better for using on short spins at the week-end, but she never gave any problem on long trips. The only down point for my small stature is the riding position that is not the most comfortable for the back.

I have no thought of changing her for another one on short or medium term, so I hope she will accompany me for another 100000km at least, and with many more pics!

Ride outs

A Happy Birthday

Posted on 09/05/2009 at 10:06 pm by / 0

On the 30th of the month I was celebrating my birthday.

For this great event, Juan offered me “a week-end on the bike with the right to as many “pics stops” as I wished”.

We had planned to leave early on the 1st to an unknown destination (for me). We went on my bike, me as pillion, to just enjoy the views.

We got up early, and seeing that it was pissing rain, we decided to… go back to bed until one hour later, to see if it stopped. One hour later we got up again, but it was still raining. We got up anyway, started preparing the things and we would go when ready. At about 11.00am it stopped raining and the sun appeared. We went to pick up the bike, put on the saddlebags, put on our rainsuits just in case and at last we left.

Juan told me that the first step was to get to “Sant Llorenç de Morunys”. I knew quite well that road for having ridden it a few weeks earlier, so I could indicate him the way (although he had a map, I am a good GPS- a sometimes kind of hysterical GPS but GPS anyway!).

So we started C58, Manresa, Solsona… I was surprised to see snow caped mountains and some views I had not seen a few weeks earlier when I took the same road. Maybe it was because there was no snow by then? (it had been snowing 2 days before), or maybe because as I was riding myself I couldn’t see all the landscapes that I was seeing now.

When we arrived at the crossroad that goes to Sant Llorenç, Juan stopped and told me he thought Googlemaps had got confused, and he preferred to follow suit to Bassella to get the road to Andorra. What we did… And we stopped to fuel and have a bite in “Pans&Company” of Bassella motorbike museum. There in the sun at the terrace, nor cold nor warm, it felt so good!

After “recharging our batteries”, we hit the road to Andorra again, to I didn’t know where… We went through Coll de Nargó, and after that I didn’t know where we could go apart from Andorra… After el Plà de Sant Tirs and with the road quite busy, we suddenly took a turn on the left… and there started the Road of the Pics…

The N-260, so-called “Eix Pirinenc” in Catalan, from there is a road with twisties and more twisties, first up during some kilometres, with views to valleys and snow-capped peaks, more valleys and more snow-capped peaks… We stopped many times to take pics…

We had time, we had no schedule, I didn’t check the time in all the day, and at no time I knew what time it was… and where we were going to…

We arrived in Sort (“luck” in catalan). A village famous for many lottery winning prizes. In Sort we took the C13 to Vielha. Though we didn’t get to Vielha. In Llavorsí we took a small road that followed along a ravine, it was quite windy now. After getting lost at a crossroad we went back, and we followed the road until we arrived to a village. A village with about 20 houses, a small hotel, and another bar-restaurant in front of the hotel. The hotel was actually where we were going to sleep. And I still didn’t know what time it was (and I had not even seen the name of the village…). It was very windy, the sky was starting to be cloudy, though we could still see between the clouds a snow capped peak at the end of the road. It started to rain. We left the bike parked outside and went to the hotel. The room had a terrace with view over a small river.

On the other side there was a shepherd, 3 dogs and many sheeps.

After a well-deserved rest, we went for a walk around the village, take a bite in the bar and another walk through the path at the back of the hotel, along the river.

As the wind started to be quite cold, we went back to the hotel, to rest, to have dinner and finally sleep dreaming of the snowy landscapes waiting for us the next day.

We got up early, had breakfast: toasted bread with “pan con tomate” (you rub the bread with garlic, then with a fresh juicy tomato, and you finish with a bit of virgin olive oil) with Serrano ham. We had decided to follow that road until it ended. We then followed the “Cardos Valley”, with this same snowed peak in front of us, and from time to time another mountain that appeared and disappeared with the twisties. Along the road were nice villages.

We arrived to Tavascan, crossed the village and followed a small road that indicated the ski station (which was closed, but the road was opened). So we started going up, quite slow as the road was very wet in the shadow and quite narrow, but it was quite good though.

After a few kilometres, a “pic stop”… Nice waterfall!

We followed up, and up, stopping from time to time to take pics, and we finally arrived to a tiny village (the station?), but it was the end of the tarmac and between stones, mud and puddles, we decided to turn around an go back. We will come back with a dirt bike!

After a few more pics stops we went back to Llavorsí. We had planned to follow with the C13- C28 to Vielha, and then go back through C230, to Pont de Suert, and then N260 to la Pobla de Segur, stopping for lunch in Senterada, a village where we always try to stop when on our way, to eat toasted bread with homemade pork products in a bar-restaurant-hostal we discovered some years ago by chance.

But let’s not go too fast…

So we took the C13 up… and up we went. The more up we went, the more snow… so we stopped quite often…

Until we got “in the middle” of the snow. We couldn’t stop to stop 😉 .

It had been snowing a few days before, but the road was fully cleaned from the snow. The road had very good tarmac and very nice twisties. We stopped several times, one of them to build a snowman, that looked a little bit scary but well…

The road went up till we arrived to “Port de la Bonaigua”. It was a little bit cloudy there and quite windy. And loads of snow.

The road sign indicating the pass was broken and covered with 2 metres of snow.

After a few more pics we started to go down. On the other side of the pass it’s the start of the “Aran Valley” and the road on that side was in a very bad condition, some parts with no tarmac, with mud, and potholes. So we went down at a slow pace, with beautiful snowy landscapes around, though the peaks were already in the clouds.

We arrived to Vaqueira, ski station quite ugly in my opinion (as so many others….) and proceeded down to Vielha where we took the tunnel (it was sooo cold inside, like a cold tunnel of 5km… the only moment of the trip I felt cold). And then to Pont de Suert. After the village we stopped to help a French couple, with a XJR1300 each, who was lost… how wouldn’t they, they had no map… So we indicated how to go to Bielsa through Ainsa, and we got back on the road. I thought that on that road it was the end of the snow-capped peaks… But I was wrong, we still had a few more to see. And with a beautiful village in the front.

We stopped for a while, in the middle of a field, we could only hear the birds and the silence.  The truth is that it would have been an ideal place for a picnic, but we had no picnic nor drink, and as it was starting to be late and we were hungry, we had no more choice than to head to the village of the toasts with homemade pork products. There we stopped for a good while, and yes we had the toasted bread with pan con tomate, ham, 2 different types of dry sausage, another type of pork product, 2 different types of cheese, pate and so on… Everything homemade. After lunch we had some more rest on the terrace outside, next to 2 English bikers.

Well at some point we had to go back home, so we headed back.

We went to  Pobla de Segur, and followed the N260 to la Seu d’Urgell, to get back to the road we arrived through. A very nice road but full of Mossos d’Esquadra… (the Catalan police. We saw a couple on their bikes, a mobile radar, and another control later.)

In Sort we went back to the road we arrived from. We did our last pics stop in Pervés Pass and enjoyed a little more of the road…

Then we got to the C14, back to Bassella, where we stopped again to rest and have some coke, and proceeded to Solsona, Manresa, etc… and back home. With lots of traffic and few enjoyment…

In total about 650km of twisties and more twisties, surrounded with snowy landscapes along the whole way, fully enjoying the landscape and the road…

A Happy Birthday 🙂



Ride outs

Catalonia Ride-out – all by myself

Posted on 16/04/2009 at 9:34 pm by / 0

A few weeks ago, one of the few days of March-April with no rain, as my husband was away for the week-end, I decided to do something I hadn’t been doing for ages: go for a ride-out on my own, and stop as much as I wanted to take pics…
Let’s go…

That Spring Sunday, I woke up at about 8.00am, and after breakfast I put on my leathers, together with the recently bought rain jacket (the old one had just died- or at least its zip, after 7 years of intensive service), and I went out… the trip started at last.

I took with me a small cool-box, where I put 2 sandwiches, a coke can, my winter gloves and my rain pants (to keep them cold…).

I started the day taking the C58 road to Manresa. The stunning views of Montserrat Mountains with their peculiar shapes emerging from the mist woke me up completely.

I followed to Manresa, and then I took the C55 through Súria, Cardona… and turned just before Solsona to go up to Sant Llorenç de Morunys through the road of “la Llosa del Cavall” reservoir.

There I stopped for the first time, I was surrounded with fields of small white flowers. So I stopped on a perpendicular road, where some people were flying remote-control scale-model planes.

The second stop was on the reservoir of la Llosa del Cavall. That day was a little strange, with kind of a light mist around giving the landscape a dreamlike aspect. And the reflections were just incredible.

There I HAD TO stop on a bend (with a big hard shoulder though) because the scenery was just too much. I felt like I was somewhere in Scotland, by the Loch Ness or something like this, more than on a road of the Catalan pre-Pyrenees…

After stopping in Sant Llorenç de Morunys to refuel, and make sure of the right way asking to the gentleman in the filling station, I followed the path he indicated. The idea was to go to Coll de Nargó by a road I had taken last summer.

But I got lost, when I arrived to the Pass, I was so concentrated on the road because the tarmac was full of potholes, that I followed the bend on the left, and I didn’t even see that there was another road that was going straight.
So after a good while riding, I realised that the landscape didn’t ring a bell… but it was too late, I was already back in Solsona…

No bother, I had all the day, and nobody would stop me from going to the planned road. So I followed the road that goes to Bassella (and its motorbike museum), a very nice road too, though that day there was a lot of traffic (but also many safe places to overtake). At the cross, I followed in direction of Andorra, and at last I arrived to the cross I should have arrived to from the other way… just after Coll de Nargó.
From there I had a 40km piece of twisty roads in the middle of nature, with almost no traffic at all (I hardly saw 2 or 3 cars).

With this big detour, it was almost 1pm, and I started to be hungry, so I started to look for a place to stop to eat my sandwiches. There was a nice pass, but it was too windy and cold, even though the views were impressive, so I followed.

After about 10km I saw a road that seemed to go to the depths of a valley and looked nice. But I saw it too late and I couldn’t find a place to turn back. So while I was looking for a place to turn back I found another place to stop for lunch. It was a group of 4 houses, with a nice waterfall, and stunning views over the valley. I went down a cement path, quite steep, to the “center” of the “village” (no tarmac there), and there I felt a little like an intruder so I turned back as I could to park the bike half way to the top. Between the houses there was a man and his son (I guess) doing some repair job on a Montesa.

While I stopped, we could only hear the sound of the waterfall and some bird singing from time to time. It was so peaceful.

After having my lunch and taking a good rest, I took some more pics of the bike and went on.

This time without the rain coat, as the sun was now shining and it was much warmer than in the morning.

After a while I overtook a car that was quite slow, and after a bend I found this landscape…

It was more stunning in live than on the pics, there was no hard shoulder, and the road was going down, so I stopped and took the pic from the bike, with the helmet and the gloves on, just in case the car I had overtaken before would arrive…

Then I stopped once again and for the last time a little more down the road to take more pics…

While I was stopped, the car passed me again (I’m sure he’d thought why the hell is she overtaking for losing time stopping all the time afterwards… ).

After a while I got to the Pass I had got lost before and overtook the car again…

And finally I proceeded to Sant Llorenç de Morunys again, with no more pic stops as the weather was starting to get worst now and I preferred not to get rain on the way home (and less a mountain storm).
I refuelled again in Sant Llorenç, and luckily it was not the same gentleman, he would have thought I was crazy going around in circle…

I went down the road through la Llosa del Cavall reservoir, where I had a few rain drops, and with the views not as nice as in the morning, there was now a little bit of wind and no more reflections…
Even with the detours and kilometres, I arrived home quite early, after exactly 372km… and I cleaned the bike from all the insects that had ended their lives on my bike front… and on the helmet… Yes, Spring finally arrived!



One year with Her

Posted on 04/06/2006 at 10:50 pm by / 0

Last month it was the one year anniversary of when I picked up my new bike in the shop. My blue SV650S. I still remember the “fear” I had when I first speeded up, in the shop’s Street, fear to fall, fear not to be able to brake, not to be able to stop, or to speed up too fast.

The bike is very different from my first bike. First for the driving position, with the handlebar lower and more distant. I don’t get that well to the ground either.
Of course, the bike is much more powerful (for me at least), more nervous, brakes a lot (the other did not brake too well by the end, it did not speed that much either lol…), and most of all, it has a lot of engine braking. This bike really flips me out for the engine braking, I almost don’t have to use the brakes.  It will save money on brake pads! 😉

That first day I was so scared that I just wanted to get the bike to the garage and that’s it, but my husband encouraged me to go for a small ride to get used to it. Good idea. I finally got the hang of it.

After the first “trial” week going to work with Her (all motorway, including traffic jams), we decided to go on our first small trip to check how it was being more time riding her, as what I like is travelling.

We left on a Saturday morning for Anzánigo, Huesca. About 300 kilometres by secondary roads. The last kilometres are a quite bad road (bumpy and with roadworks in process) to get to the camping (http://www.anzanigo.es/ ), and I realised that the suspension is quite hard, and that my arms and wrists are suffering from the driving position. It could have been worst though, and it was well worth it.

The next day we went to Riglos:

Embalse de la Peña


And on Monday we went back through back roads… Indeed “back roads” as it took us 11 hours to come back home. To be blamed: many photographic stops, some stop to put on the raining suit, one to eat, and the last one in a filling station back on the main road (from which we were kicked out…) to take shelter from pouring rain.



At the end of May I took her for the first service @ 1000km.

The second trip was at the end of June to go to a bikers Rally, also in Huesca, but this time in Benasque Valley, a very beautiful area (though the Rally was not that good- a money making rally).

To go back we also went through very beautiful roads, through Castejón de Sos, El Pont de Suert, Camarasa, with beautiful views on the Pyrenees, and an unforgettable stop in a restaurant in Senterada (http://www.casaleonardo.net/ ), where we ate excellent “pan con tomate” toasted bread (with garlic, tomato and olive oil) with excellent Serrano ham.

Pantano de Camarasa

As I wasn’t sure yet if the bike was ok for travelling 😉 , at the end of July we went to another bikers Rally, this time close to Burgos, in Belorado, a very nice village. It was very warm but we had a great time. To get there we went through Huesca (as now we knew the way 😉 ). On the way back we went through the motorway as we stayed to watch the England MotoGP and we left late.

I then brought the bike for the 6000km service before going on holidays (the garage and then us).

The last trip of the year was quite the longer, for our holidays at the end of August-beginning of September.

I did the first part by myself, I went to visit some friends first in Marseille and then others in Lyon (France). To go to Marseille I mainly went through National roads, except at the end when I took the motorway, as I got fed up with the traffic jams at every single village entrance (it was a Saturday, people going back from holidays…).

When I arrived in Marseille, I asked my way to a biker who indicated quite well how to get to my friend’s home. It was a long one-way street with a strong down slope. When I thought I had reached the number, I parked on the footpath. I checked the address on my mobile phone, and I had stopped too early, I had 50 more numbers to go. First problem: take the bike back on the road without falling, and then, drag the bike back uphill to the road. I was able to get the bike down the footpath without falling, but I couldn’t put the sidestand, and I couldn’t drag the bike uphill (it’s already difficult sometimes when it’s flat… but there I had no more strength). I was luckily helped by a tourist who was passing by, who pushed the bike uphill so that I could get on it again on the right direction. I was very grateful to him, as without his help I think I would still be there 😉


Between Marseille and Lyon I went through National road, as it was weekday it was quite quick and without traffic, but I had a very strong side wind blowing all the way (which is quite usual in the area).

Next Friday I left my friends to go to Toulouse where I would stop for the night before going on the next day to go to Asturias.
I started early to go with time through national roads through Saint-Etienne, Le Puy en Velay, Mende (nice place where I stopped for lunch). I wanted to take the afternoon to take a detour to famous Millau viaduct, but it started to rain, and I decided to go straight through Rodez, Albi (very nice place also, but I got some traffic jams and I preferred to go on and have some rest). I arrived in Toulouse at about 5.30pm.

On Saturday morning, while I was ready to go at about 8.00am, it started to rain. I got down to the hotel entrance where 2 bikers couples were waiting for the storm to stop. We were almost 2 hours waiting, and I finally went when it got less intense (no more lightning and thunder at least). I had planned to take the motorway, and it rained almost all the way to the border. I think I stopped every 2 filling station to dry up and warm up a bit, I got fed up with so much water. At about 2.00pm I arrived at the border. I was almost dry, and in Spain it started to rain again, but the tarmac was draining better than on the French side (it was quite a torture on the French side every time a car would pass me). At about 3.00pm I met with my husband close to Bilbao, and we had some lunch.

From there we went straight to Asturias where we spent the weekend (and had some rest!!!).

Next Monday we went to Ferrol through the coastal road (from Avilés N-632 + N-634) and then the LU-861 and AC-861, beautiful roads but few filling stations… Though as we were going quite “slow” we were able to do 230km without the fuel indicator popping up. And we finally arrived to a filling station.

That same week we went down to Sanxenxo where we enjoyed beautiful sunny days.



Isla de la Toja

Next Friday we went back to Asturias, this time through the interior via Lugo and N-640 to Ribadeo and back on the coast road.


The week-end and the rest of the week was spent enjoying time with friends, enjoying the food, enjoying the cider… with some ride-out with the bikes… and more food, and more cider… Asturias! 🙂

The last Sunday we went back straight to Barcelona, through Leon and Burgos, as they had announced big storms on the cost. And for once they were right! And we arrived dry.

During this trip I ended up with quite a back ache because of the driving position. A really good massage session was not sufficient to get my back back, I would have needed at least 4 to take all the knots out… But I would do it again anyway!

On the way back I had to get the bike back to the mechanics for the 12000km service

Then autumn arrived, and then winter, and for some months the bike was mainly used as my “tool” for commuting.



My first biking holidays

Posted on 09/08/2003 at 2:21 pm by / 0

This was my first “long” trip on my bike and on my own, the more kilometres I had done was a return trip from Barcelona to Onteniente in 3 days, and by then I had been (well) accompanied.

I started on a Saturday morning from Barcelona to the first (short) stop: Perpignan, where I spent the week-end with my family. By motorway, nothing original except some traffic jam at the tolls… a little boring to be honest.

Next Monday I left after lunch to the second stop of the trip, Bordeaux, also by motorway, also boring. The only detail of the trip was when I stopped at the first service station, there were 3 Goldwings with trailer, with Irish plates. And then another one arrived (without trailer), with a Belgian couple with whom I had a small chat while we were resting… They had been in Barcelona for the HD centenary, then they had gone across the Riviera, and they were then aiming to Lourdes before going back to Belgium (and some will say that I do a lot of kilometres… 😉 ).

The next day I left early to Le Mans, the first half by motorway and the second by quite straight national roads, but less boring than the motorway. The weather was lovely, sunny but not too warm.

The small detail of the trip was my 3-year-old niece’s surprised face when she saw a bike coming into her garden, and it was her godmother who got down and took off her helmet…  It looks like she likes bikes already 😉 (sorry for her dad :/ ).

After a week with the family, I got on the road again on Saturday, to Niort, about 200km, 150 of which under pouring rain… I arrived completely soaked and I needed all weekend to dry (a little exaggerated but not so much!).

Next Monday I left Niort to Bilbao, all the trip through motorway (with tolls or free), a little boring but I was very happy to go to Bilbao. I stopped at the border to have lunch with a forum friend, Lorenzo, and then I proceeded to Bilbao where I was warmly welcomed by Cris, another forum friend. I was very happy to see her again and to spend some time with her and her friends.

The next day she came with me for a while on her bike, to San Vicente de la Barquera, showing me very nice places, some of which I will have to come back without luggage, like Santillana del Mar and some others…

In San Vicente de la Barquera, she went back while I went on to Oviedo (I was supposed to go to Gijón but never found the way out). There I met with another forum friend, Julio, while we were trying to talk to Rafa on the phone but he wouldn’t answer… 😉 and after a while Julio saw that one of the bikes parked next to ours was the one of another forum guy, Juan, who was close by having a drink and who joined us. Rafa then joined us and we had a drink, and then we all went to a small village for (very nice) dinner… and that was it for the first day in Asturias, in good company…

Every one of the 3 days there we went for ride outs on large twisty roads (so many of them there!), and discovered beautiful places inland and on the coast: a fishermen village, a cape where we couldn’t find the walking path to the point, and a small part of the “Picos de Europa”, where we were over the clouds, beautiful landscapes under an incredible sun 🙂 .

Cabo Peñas


Cangas de Onis

Covadonga Lakes – Lago Ercina

Covadonga Lakes – Lago Enol

And all that accompanied by first class guides (but one, who got lost in every single roundabout 😀 )…

And I have to highlight the incredible weather we could enjoy all the week, not a raindrop! Who said that in Asturias it’s raining all the time?

One detail of the ride outs… in a village on our way to the Picos de Europa, an elderly man (about 80 years old I’d say) watched us go through the village and greeted the 4 of us with a “V” sign. There is no age for passion… 😉

On Friday night there was a “goodbye party” (although completely unplanned), with a lot (too many for some… I won’t name anybody 😉 ) of cider, until “a little” late.

And on Saturday morning I had to head back home 🙁 . I was still (well) accompanied though by 3 nice Asturians, until some place close to Santander I think, by a river under the trees, where we had some sandwiches and I had a little nap also, really needed it!

At about 4.30pm we kicked off, 2 Asturians went back to their homeland and another one accompanied me a little more, to Bilbao.

Then I went on on my own by the National road, very nice and pleasant, with nice views, and the last part by motorway quite boring, with a lot of heat, and annoying side wind. I spent the night in Pamplona and had a very good sleep 😉 .

I left in the morning for the last part of the trip Pamplona-Jaca-Huesca-Barbastro-Lleida-Barcelona. The first part to Huesca by a road with very nice landscapes (typical nice villages, Yesa reservoir, incredible views on the Pyrenees).

Yesa Reservoir

From Barbastro it was a little bit more boring, with straight roads and motorway, and still that unbearable heat.

I arrived home at 3.30pm, end of the trip. I get down of the bike, take off my gloves, my helmet, my jacket… the road trip is over (my butt, my right fist, my neck and my back are thankful for that 😉 ). Holidays have come to their end.

I still have a lot to see about Asturias, I will have to come back… on my way to Galicia? I already have an idea for my next holidays… Still have to see with which bike it will be…

I won’t end without saying a big thank you to all those who accompanied me and warmly welcomed me, and for all I learn in such a short time. Between others: hospitality and friendship.


Ride outs

After the rain…

Posted on 12/06/2003 at 1:56 pm by / 0

After 50km riding under pouring rain on the National road stuck behind a truck, without seeing anything of landscape, and having left behind beautiful views of poppy fields, I finally left the National road to take a small twisty road…

And it stopped raining…

I left a very dark sky to go towards the sunset that showed up from behind the clouds in the horizon…

I looked back on my mirrors and I stopped…

And saw this…

The previous unpleasant 50 kms were worth the effort just for enjoying this sight.

Never better said “Après la pluie le beau temps”…

(Pics taken with disposable camera, on my way to Rodellar, Huesca, Spain, where I was going to spend a week-end doing canyoning.)

Two weeks later, going through the same place but with much better climatic conditions, for another canyoning week-end:


Ride outs

My first bike, my first kilometres

Posted on 01/05/2003 at 1:37 pm by / 0

I got my bike license on 2nd of January 2002, at the second try. At the end of that month, I met with the owner of my first bike, a Kawasaki ZZR250, to confirm the purchase. I will always remember my first day with her… Take her through Barcelona without having ever driven in a city, take her to my work, find an insurance (the previous owner had given his to me, though I was told years later that it would have been useless in case of accident or of a Police control, as it is individual), and then at night go back home on the motorway with an incorporation from the left-hand-side (in Spain we drive on the right! Most incorporations are though from the right)… I was so scared…

The first months I only used her as a mere “transportation mean” to commute, I didn’t dare too much to go on a ride on my own. I only did some up and down Tibidabo’s hills by the Arrabassada road, at snail’s pace, to learn somehow.

Then summer came and I went for the first spin by myself, from Tossa de Mar to Sant Feliu de Guixols, the so-called the “365 corners Road”… (not recommended in Summer actually, the road is quite narrow, and you can often come across touristic buses…)

I also visited some nice Catalan village in the area, Vullpellac and Peratallada. It was August, very warm, and I was wearing my textile suit, I got a little too warm… This first ride out I arrived back home around 9.30pm, very tired but so happy.

“The Road of the 365 corners”


My first long trip was in October of that year, with a forum friend and his wife, to go down to Onteniente for the week-end for the Anniversary Meet of the forum. A tough experience for the strong side wind that was blowing in Tarragona area, and it kept taking me from one side to the other of the motorway. It was also tough for my friend because I was going so slow ALL the way down… The way back I went with another forum friend who was also driving a 250cc, and he didn’t suffer that much.

Onteniente 2002

From then, I started going on group rideouts, always at the back of the group, for being so slow. Though I didn’t care, before learning to run you have to learn to walk, and even now, I don’t like speeding. I prefer to go at my own pace, feeling secure and most of all, enjoying the road and the views. They will wait for me at the crossroads…

“The Road of the 365 corners”

Montserrat – January 2003

I also went on with some rides by myself, at my own pace, without bothering anybody, and being able to stop when I felt like it to enjoy my second passion: photography.




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