We were up with the dawn waiting for the sun to crest over the mountains and warm the valley we were in. The temps dropped to a chilly 28°F (-2°C) last night and the new REI Arctic Pod mummy bags worked brilliantly. I woke up in the middle of the night for a beer elimination excursion and the skies were filled with stars including a great showing of the Milky Way.
We are only about 60kms from the Slovenian border. Crossing at the small town of Kranjska Gora is easy and route 206 will take us through the Nacionalni park Bahinsko jezera and up and over another pass at 1611 meters. Shortly after crossing we come across a couple tanks and bunkers on the side of the road. These have been decommissioned in just 2005.
The day we were riding through here there happened to be a bicycle event on the road, so beside the fun of cobblestone turns, I got to play ‘dodge the bicycles’ as they ride all over the road. I was good and shared the road.
We continued over the pass and down thru the countyside of Slovenia, heading for a night on the coast. Most of the towns that we passed through seemed unfinished, but were clean with the occasional colorful flowers. The pavement was good but the people seemed suspicious, although interested and extremly nice to the strangely dressed people on the overloaded Triumph. As we left Slovenia our goal was camping on the Mediterranean on the Italian coast, the Golfo Di Venezia. It was getting late in the day and the temperature was about 90°F, full sun and rush hour, holiday, stop and go traffic. I needed fuel and was hungry and thirsty and there wasn’t a fuel station or restaurant in sight. Slowly inching along, I wasn’t ready to filter yet, we finally found both on our fourth try. Getting off the bike we were greeted outside by a waiter who thought the outside tables were the best place for us to sit. As we were hot, sweaty, and speaking for myself, not smelling all that great, I had to agree as there was shade and a nice breeze.
After a wonderful Mediterranean pizza we jumped back on the bike and headed to find a spot to pitch our tent. Driving into the tourist town of Bibione, Italy we began to realize that camping right on the beach was not going to happen tonight, and maybe camping in town might not also. The place was PACKED with people on holiday for the long weekend. We finally found a place a short walk from the beach, still surrounded by people, but the beach we had all to ourselves as the sun was setting. Go figure.
Up early, quick walk on the beach, and we are headed away from the beach and to Venezia. The traffic headed to the beach was back up for over 10kms, so we are glad to be headed away.
Getting into the Venezia area I got lost again and ended up on the bridge into Venice. After riding in a couple circles, doing a couple illegal turns and riding the wrong way up a street we ended up hiding the bike in a garage and strapping and locking all our gear to the bike and hoping for the best while we were gone.
Leaving Venezia in the late afternoon we rode and rode looking for a campground or a place to stay the night, not having any luck for many miles. We finally ended up in the beautiful medieval walled town of Castelfrance Veneto, just in time for evening drinks. It seems in Italy drinks in the square visiting with everyone followed by dinner at 2000hrs is the norm. Well, I was tired and hungry without a place to stay, yet. We had a drink and a tapas of a small pizza and headed out on our quest to find a place to stay. All the places in town were full so we headed out and saw a small sign on the side of the road leading us to a great farm with a room to rent, for €50 a night, and we grabbed it.
Tomorrow, iconic passes. Can’t wait.
Greg “WANDRR” and Melanie