Day 38 - Touring with Klaus


Saturday 2nd August 2014

It's a beautiful morning, not a cloud in the sky. It's going to be very hot today.

True to his word Klaus has the Wing fired up and is ready for the off at 9am. We have unloaded all the luggage from the bikes. What a difference in handling that makes!
 

 
Early morning mist at Kalte Kuchl


It's going to be a beautiful day

No way would we have found the fantastic back roads that Klaus leads us to. How do the Austrians maintain such perfect 'B' roads through the savage winters in such perfect condition when in the UK we put up with such rubbish?
On the road with Klaus


 The route takes us down a high-sided gorge then up high on the Niederalp pass. The views are splendid.


 
We swoop down again into the Salza River gorge where wild water rafting and canoeing is the chosen sporty option. They have a wonderful life do the Austrians in the most beautiful country in the world for biking, hiking and water sports in the summer and skiing and sledging in the winter.
Niederalp summit - 1220m


We stop for coffee at a cafe at Palfauer Wasserloch where a wooden footbridge is strung across the river gorge.

 Soon the rafts start to arrive, the paddlers laughing and shrieking as the fast river rushes them downstream. Just upriver from the footbridge there is a landing place where the rafters beach their craft and climb up to a jumping platform for a high plunge into the river.

 Then it's back into the boat for another thrill ride down the gorge.


Klaus and Mick at Palfauer Wasserloch

Rafts beaching for the leap
High up at Hochkar ski resort
 
 We are soon off again and Klaus takes us climbing up an amazing service road to the high ski resort on the Hochkar mountain. It's a 9km climb to the ski lift and parking lot.

The road up to Hochkar


 Back down again onto a fast road along the valley floor, all sweepers and switchbacks, Kurvenreich (lit. Rich in curves) as they say in these parts.

We arrive at the Lunz am See and the guest house of Klaus' daughter where we are treated to homemade plum cake and alcohol-free Weizenbier (didn't know they made that, not bad either!).


Plum cake and alkohohfrei Welißbier

 

Then it's back on the road for the wonderful pass up and over to the town of Mariazell famous for it's big catholic cathedral. We stop for a wander and the opportunity to buy another sticker for the panniers. 

The cathedral at Mariazell
 Back at Kalte Kuchl the place is heaving with local bikers out to enjoy the late evening sunshine.
260 kilometres on some of the best roads in the world - thank you so much Klaus. 




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