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Here at ABR, we love chatting you guys on Facebook, as it gives us a great insight into the things you love (and don’t love) about adventure bike riding. The other day, we were interested to find out what everyone’s favourite mountain passes in Europe are.
We know there is an abundance of incredible options to choose from, so picking a favourite proved a little tricky! However, here’s what some of you fine folks said were your absolute faves…1.Timmelsjoch Pass, Italy
Photo: Hannes Mauerer
Ascent: 2,509m | Length: 23 miles
Mark Sillence said that, so far, his favourite mountain pass in Europe is Timmelsjoch, which is located in Italy, just a few hundred metres below the famous Stelvio Pass, in the province of South Tyrol.
âI rode this last year, while riding from Austria to Italy,â he explained. âAs well as the amazing views, the cafe and motorcycle museum make it even more interesting.â
The pass is open from approximately June through to October and is closed daily between 8pm and 7am.2. Nufenen Pass, Switzerland
Photo: Gregorini Demetrio
Ascent: 2,478, | Length: 44 miles
Mark Jones said, âI loved the Gotthard Pass, but itâs over commercial. The Nufenen Pass on the other hand, was awesome.â
And awesome it is, in fact, itâs Switzerlandâs second highest mountain pass, and not only are the hairpins thrilling, but the views of the surrounding mountainous landscapes are just to die for.
The pass is open from July through till October, but is closed every day from 6pm to 8pm.3. Grimsel Pass, Switzerland
Ascent: 2,164m | Length: 24 miles
A few votes came in for the Grimsel Pass, which is one of the highest mountain passes in Switzerland.
It offers riders knee-tickling hairpins and roads that sweep you past luscious forests, sparkling reservoir lakes and stunning mountainous terrain. The views are simply out of this world, and from the highest points, youâll be blown away by the sight of the Bernese Alps.
Photo: Paul Bica
Ascent: 2,145m | Length: 90 miles
Phil Simpson said his favourite mountain pass is Transalpina, which is located in Romania. âFar better than the TransfÄgÄrÄÈan,â he explained, and we can see why.
The Transalpina is actually the highest road in Romania and passes through the Carpathian mountains, so you can count on it delivering some pretty awe-inspiring views while you ride.
Make sure you bring your camera, because youâll want to snap the gorgeous scenery from the top!5. Grossglockner, Austria
Photo: Hannes Meurer
Ascent: 2,504m | Length: 29 miles
There were also a few votes for the High Alpine Road, which is located at the foot of Austriaâs highest mountain, Grossglockner (3,798m).
It might have a bit of a steep entrance fee (which is currently set at 26 euros for a motorcycle day pass), but this means the road is exceptionally well maintained and as you climb this magnificently curvaceous road, the views just seem to get more insane.
Youâll want to stop off at the top to admire the glorious view of Grossglocknerâs peak, itâs truly a spectacular sight.6. N621, Spain
Ascent: 1,610m | Length: 55.9 miles
The Picos de Europa mountain range is an epic place to ride, and the N621 offers a phenomenal ride up into the towering peaks. Forming one side of the famed âPotes Triangleâ, it begins in the small town of Potes which is the perfect place to base yourself while away on a tour.
Youâll see plenty of bikers out on the route, particularly in the summer months, and you may also want to watch out for the cows and their herders who often line the road and can stray onto the tarmac from time to time.
Take a right at top of the road and continue up a side lane to the statue of a White Bear, with stunning views of the surrounding mountains.
Has your favourite European mountains pass made it onto the list? Let us know and send us your photos in the comments section below.
Like many of you, recent the Covid19 lockdown has completely changed my usual way of life and biking. Thankfully, I’ve still maintained my main job as a software engineer, albeit now all working remote from home. I haven’t commuted into central London since the middle of March and only recently had chance to enjoy time on my bike on a few recent weekends when the weather has been reasonable.
Yep, I seemed to have become a weekend fair weather rider…London commuting all weathers
I used to be one to ride all the time, an all weather biker, commuting to into London rain or shine, but now I’m desk bound at home Monday-Friday. If anything, I’m putting in more hours now than I used to as I work the time I would have previously spent commuting. Weekends are now my only chance to get out on the bike, where I’m choosing to ride for enjoyment and thus I want to ride out into the sunny countryside. A weekend blast in the rain just ain’t quite as much fun.
It’s anybody’s guess when we’ll all return to normality and start commuting back into the office. Somehow, I don’t think normality will be quite what it used to be though. Like many forward thinking tech companies, my employer always had options for flexible and remote working. However, like many companies they are now planning for many of its staff to work remote far more, using shared ‘hot’ desks and reducing office space in central London. After the success of remote working these last few months, there’s no argument for not continuing to offer such an option.Yamaha FZ6 S2 commuter hack
So what does this mean for biking? With less emphasis on commuting, I’m seriously questioning my current choice of Yamaha FZ6 as a pure commuter hack. Why am I putting my priorities into a basic commuter bike? Why don’t I get a fun weekend bike than can commute upon occasion? Longer term, I also can’t help but question even living in the London suburbs. If I can work remote, why not live remote?! Once the advantage of a short commute is eroded, what else does the East London suburbia have to offer? Why not live rural, escape the crowds, find nicer roads, beautiful scenery and cheaper motorcycle insurance?
These last few months have definitely been a time of questioning, challenging prior assumptions, re-evaluating life choices and priorities. We maybe getting closer to normality, but it’s clear it won’t be the normal we’ve been used to in years past.
How has the Covid19 crisis affected your biking?
After a bit of a break while the UK's bike shops basically ran out of stock of anything useful or decent, we're back with our legendary Dirty Deals!After a bit of a break while the UK's bike shops basically ran out of stock of anything useful or decent, we're back with our legendary Dirty Deals!