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Euro Alpine 2019 Road Trip

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In 42 hours i'll be leaving the house on this year's euro trip.  As usual i'll post as many photos as I can.  Passes driven this year? Furka, Grimsel, Grossglockner, Stelvio, Brenner and many more.

2019 Euro Alpine Trip

Day 1 - Early Start and the Strip Club

With the train booked for 6.50am, it meant leaving the house at 4am!  Every year i say this is too early, and that next year the train will be a more civilised time! But then i always book the early train.  I need to learn!

The hotel for the night is in Bern, Switzerland, so after a quick route via Luxembourg for cheap (€1.09.9 / litre) diesel it was a case of hugging the east of France down to Switzerland.

Having a break / refreshment.

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Finding the hotel was no problem and upon pulling up saw what looked like a bar and thought, "excellent, food and beer on site" but........

Whilst the hotel was pretty nondescript.....

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There was a strip club attached to the end of the hotel!

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And this being Switzerland, i doubt i could afford the entrance fee, let alone a private dance :happyanim:

Deciding to forgo the strip club, beer and food was acquired elsewhere.

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It had been a long day, so an early night, to recover for the proper roads was much needed.

Total driving time (including stops/fuel ups/Eurotunnel/etc) - 13 hours / 688 miles

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Day 2 - Early morning trains and car transporter

It's 4am and i've just been woken up by a train.  No problem, i roll over and go back to sleep.  It's 4.20am and i've been woken up again.  It's 4.40am, woken up again......yup, every 20 mins a train goes past the hotel.  I peer out the window and i can pretty much reach the trains!

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Still, looks to be a nice day.

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When i planned this route, i didn't notice that the Mittaltunnel is actually a car train required tunnel!

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Wasn't long before the otherside appeared.

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And hardly any clouds in the sky, fantastic weather.

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Starting to get closer to the Furka / Grimsel / Susten / Gotthard Loop

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The "Loop" and as you can see, the weather is excellent compared to a few years ago when it was all fogged out.

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The Furka, which some people will recognise from the James Bond film Goldfinger

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Who says Switzerland is expensive?

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Leaving the Furka behind.

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Gotthard Pass

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More roadworks.

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Continuing on the loop.

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The Grimsel Pass
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Small detour to Panoramastrasse Oberaar.  Access to this is a one way road, which opens once an hour :)

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Leaving the Pa, carry on with the "loop"

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Still plenty of snow in parts.

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Susten Pass

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Hotel for the night in the small town of Hospental.

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Total driving time (including stops/fuel ups/food/etc) - 7 hours / 199 miles

 

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Day 3 - Chruch bells

Day 3 started much in the same way as day 2.....bloody early.  Church bells in Hospental ring all bloody night, on the hour, every hour!  And at 6am, they ring for 3 minutes continously!

Ok, lets go.

First pass of the day?  Oberralpass

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Why is there a lighthouse at the top?  I'm not sure, anybody?

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Next up? Ospizio del Lucomagno, also known as Lukmanierpass

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The fella with the yellow stall was a very enthusiastic cheese seller.  He nearly had me roped in, but i resisted!!

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From there, over to Strada del Pass, also known as San Bernadino Pass

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From there, over to one my favourite passes, the Spulga Pass

The view from Switzerland, looking into Italy

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The view from Italy, looking into Switzerland

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On the way down from Spulga

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Then straight to the Julierpass which was fairly busy.

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Picked up a souvenir present for somebody.

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And another for somebody else.

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Time to go.

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Hotel for the night.

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As the day went on, i could see the rain clouds gathering......

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But that wasn't going to stop the beer!!!

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And then more beer.

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Food.

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Total driving time (including stops/fuel ups/food/etc) - 7 hours / 198 miles

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Day 4 - New roads

Heading east, saw a small detour, but first.....the Fluela Pass.

Although the previous night's rain had stopped, roads were still pretty wet.

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As the day got on, it started to brighten up :smashin:

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This year, saw another new route.  This time the Kaunertal Glacier Scenic Road.

On the winding road near the base you see the 10th largest "rubble" damn in Europe.

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From the top of the damn.

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First corner.

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Making progress.

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Starting to climb.

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Near the top.

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The top.

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Heading back down, the alternative route was taken.  However, some cows had a different idea!

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Back down and onto the Gurglerstrasse

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And final pass of the day, the Timmelsjoch.

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The Timmelsjoch had been completely resurfaced on the Italian side!

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Anybody want to guess which pass this is?

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Here is a clue......

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Hotel for the day and the first beer.

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Total driving time (including stops/fuel ups/food/etc) - 8.25 hours / 237 miles

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Day 5 - Beer Shopping and car trouble

And day 5, the midway point.  Weather looking a little gloomy from the hotel balcony :(

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More meat and cheese and bread for breakfast!

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Saw the biggest slug next to the car.

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At the base of the Grossglockner is a little craft brewery.  If you like beer, you visit this place.  They also do brewery tours where you can watch the beer being made.

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Picked up 36 bottles.

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Start the climb to the Grossglockner toll.

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Bit foggy.

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And then, disaster!!

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The filter is original and has covered 160k miles, so has done well.  The next hotel is at the top of the Grossglockner, so no point stopping now.

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Food location!

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And beer!

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Currywurst

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Whilst eating, the weather got worse!

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Pre-production car under wraps.  Looked like the new Mercedes SLS AMG.

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Hotel for the night

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Driving from the hotel to opposite end of the Grossglockner.

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Don't want to be making a mistake!

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A bit clearer at the visitor's centre

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Stuck in a traffic jam for 30 mins, whilst a small rock slide was made safe.

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Weather gets even worse!

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Reward for battling the fog

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Total driving time (including stops/fuel ups/food/etc) - 6.25 hours / 135 miles

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Day 6 - Locating DPF Cleaner and heading back to Italy

Looking out from the hotel window, could see the weather wasn't much better than yesterday, but hey, who cares? :)

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But before any passes.  DPF cleaner was required and it appears in Austria, you can't pop into a supermarket and just buy it, like in the UK.  Nor did any petrol stations stock it.  After locating a Bosch Garage, luck!  They had some.  In the tank it went, hoping it would help.  It didn't.

Now, Monte Zoncolan is one of my fav passes.  There are 3 routes to the top, and the 3rd is by far, the most dangerous.  Minimal passing points, very narrow road, potholes, gravel road in places.  Will have to dig out some photos, can't find any as yet.  Monte Zoncolan is extremely famous due to it's links with the Giro d'Italia.

But this is the way down, a much better quality road.

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It's a tough drive which requires much concentration.  However, once at the bottom.......beer time.

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Due to spending time locating DPF cleaner, the route was amended slightly.  Straight to Passo Giau.  You can recognise the Dolomites anywhere!

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Hotel for the night.

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Pizzeria.  It was a long walk, but i coped!

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Finally, beer!!

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Total driving time (including stops/fuel ups/food/etc) - 6 hours / 221 miles

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Day 7 - Slow journey back home

The view from the hotel wasn't much, but i could see blue sky!

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No time wasted, on to Passo Valparola.

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Then Passo Pordoi which was rammed! Never seen it so busy.  The photos don't show it that well, but could hardly move.

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Picked up myself a little souvenir.

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Hotel for the night? Top of the Stelvio.  But first, the road leading to the 47 hairpin road.

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And so it starts!

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The hotel.

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View from the hotel room.

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Old skool.

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And from the beer garden.

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Choices.

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Mmmmmm, goulash.

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Chocolate cake.

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And the view.

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Sunset.

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Total driving time (including stops/fuel ups/food/etc) - 6.75 hours / 180 miles

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Day 8 - More DPF Cleaner and the autobahn

Something i've never seen before is honey served straight from the hive.

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Sunrise

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The descent.

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More DPF Cleaner was located and put into the tank, but this time, only had a quarter tank of fuel and ran the car until the fuel reserve light came on.  This seemed to do the trick......for a few hundred miles.  But what really cleaned it out was doing 130mph on the autobahn!  Once the blockage was gone, full power was returned to the car and i could do 155mph.  The light hasn't been on since, but at 161k miles it'll be getting flushed soon.

Hotel for the night?  The v8 hotel in Stuttgart.

The new v8 hotel.

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The classic v8 hotel.

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Classic Car showroom.  No prices......you know what they say.....if you have to ask the price?  You can't afford it.

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Porsche......yours for only €54k.

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Art behind the bed.

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The view over Stuttgart.

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Some pictures of the classic v8 hotel.

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There is also a car museum attached to the hotel, but due to arriving a little later than planned, did not have time.

Beer!

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Food.

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Total driving time (including stops/fuel ups/food/etc) - 6.5 hours / 254 miles

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Day 9 - Heading For Home and German Petrol Stations

So, the last day.  A few hundred miles from Stuttgart to Calais via Luxembourg.

But some of the more unusual items you can find at your German service station.....

Super strength beer.  Not cheap at over €10 a tin.

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Something for the ladies?

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Onto Luxembourg for refreshment and cheap diesel.

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Of course, i've left plenty of stuff out, like taking the wrong turnings, going in the wrong direction, the closed roads, the awful traffic jams, etc, but it's part of the fun.  Thanks for reading!!

Total driving time (including stops/fuel ups/food/etc) - 13 hours / 631 miles

Total driving time over the 9 days (including stops/fuel ups/food/etc) - 73.75 hours / 2737 miles

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Looks like a great road trip, some fantastic photos, thanks for sharing 

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