Let's be blunt: Getting up early is not what this trip is about. When we were in Salzburg we did it nevertheless. We rode straight to Mattighofen to pay KTM a visit. It was great to see the place our bikes come from. And it was even better to meet some of the staff and to be trained in the things that really matter: How do you change a tire? Switch the fuel pump? What about the brake pads? We learnt a lot that day. Thanks very much to everybody at KTM. Especially for the patience.

Thies is still smiling. That was before changing the tire.

Thies is still smiling. That was before changing the tire.

The first days of this trip were great, but they were more about getting from A to B. So there was a lot of Autobahn. Not exactly the kind of riding we prefer. So after Mattighofen we turned towards the Alps, the best remedy to Autobahn boredom. From now on it was small streets only. And they did look promising, as you can see below.

Ready.

Ready.

We're from a region where the highest mountain is called Bungsberg. It is 167,4 meters high and has its own ski lift. True story. So you could say we are fond of mountains. They are special to us. Crossing the Alps, we made our way to South Tyrol. The Dolomites are a breathtaking scenery with their steep walls. Sometimes it was hard to keep your eyes on the road. 

"Wintersperre" is a word we don't like to read.

"Wintersperre" is a word we don't like to read.

Some passes are still closed, but some are open already and there was hardly any traffic. We had the streets to ourselves and it was great to finally test in the bikes in sharp turns. They were astonishingly agile considering the heavy load we're carrying. One of the passes we took was not completely free, there was a short strip of old snow, maybe 200 meters. We went really slow because we didn't have much grip with our street tires and made it safely to the other side. Wouldn't call it an adventure. But a foretaste, maybe?

Where every biker loves to go: the Alps.

Where every biker loves to go: the Alps.

Afterwards, we went to visit friends in Klausen, Austria (Great name for a city. They should think about spelling it with C, though). No photos from there. What happens in Klausen, stays in Klausen. But if you should ever make it there, visit the local night club Nachtigall. It won't be boring.

We were not supposed to stand there (but we didn't realize before we looked through the photos. The view was amazing).

We were not supposed to stand there (but we didn't realize before we looked through the photos. The view was amazing).

After leaving South Tyrol we took small country roads to Trieste, a laid back harbour city in the easternmost corner of Italy. An interesting place with a rich history.

Motorcycle parking areas in the city center. Bravo, Italy!

Motorcycle parking areas in the city center. Bravo, Italy!

Trieste is so relaxing, we took a selfie. We thought, it's about time.

They have Mario Cart icecream, but we took beer.

They have Mario Cart icecream, but we took beer.

We stayed at a Bed & Breakfast where the hosts Alessandra and Piero made us feel at home right away. Turns out that Piero is a motorcycle enthusiast himself: in the 70ies and 80ies he was Enduro racing before the term was established. Back then it was still called Regularitate (did we spell that right?).

When Piero was young. Wish we had photos like that of ourselves. Gotta work on the wheelie.

When Piero was young. Wish we had photos like that of ourselves. Gotta work on the wheelie.

The last thing we did in Trieste was getting some more tools as recommended by the mechanics of KTM. Then we called it a night. As did Trieste. Next up: Slovenia and Croatia. And no Autobahn.

Trieste is very romantico.

Trieste is very romantico.

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