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  #16  
Old 13 Aug 2009
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Nice work; any pics?
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  #17  
Old 13 Aug 2009
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Youtube Video.

Heres a video I made of the trip.
YouTube - Motorcycle trip from England to Millau in France
Hope it works, its my first attempt.
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My trip to Millau (France) and back 2009.http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hub...u-france-43474
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  #18  
Old 1 Sep 2009
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Thursday 11th June.
Im awake at 8am, and its eerily quiet.
I climb outside and im standing in what must be one of the largest and at the moment, quietest campsites in Europe, thoundsands of tents and hardly anybody to be seen.
I pack my tent and load my gear onto the bike.
I was going to visit the Le Mans museum but im not really in the mood as I have'nt had a good nights sleep or had a shower for 24 hours so i decide to hit the road and head in the general direction of Le Havre to catch my ferry which is leaving tommorow evening.
I look at my map and try to decide whether to spend my last night in France in the town of Caen or Rouen.
I decide on Rouen as I can visit Caen when I do my Normandy beach trip sometime in the near future.
I leave the campsite and pull into the nearest petrol station to fill up, the fuel here is 20 cent a liter more expensive than the norm!, but im too tired to care.
Next stop Mcdonalds for some breakfast and then onward to Rouen.
The weather is fine now and the road is good, it runs alongside the motorway at times and passes thru some lovely villages and towns.
I meet a lot of British registered sports cars heading in the direction of Le mans for the race weekend and judging by the amount of Aston Martins/Porches/ferraris I meet I guess the recession hasnt effected everyone!
Im looking forward to my last night in France, maybe Ill find a good bar and party the last night away, who knows?
Everythings going well but then, about 20 miles form Rouen, the bike starts to lose power and drops onto one cylinder, I pull over and have a quick inspection and it seems to be missfiring on the rear cylinder and the engine managment diagnostic light is on, remember that diagnostic tool i didnt bother packing?
I reckon I could do with it now!
I decide to struggle on into Rouen and find a B and B and somewhere to work on my bike.
Riding in thru the outskirts of Rouen the bike dies!
I pull over and break out the tool kit, just then a Honda Varadero 125 passes in the opposite direction, he sees me and does a u turn.
He gets off his bike and tries to help but he only speaks French, and I only speak English (and Irish, but I doubt he does!)
I tell him im a mechanic and he seems to understand, then he gets on his bike and he gestures for me to follow him, I fire up the bike on one cylinder and fall in behind him as we cross park greens, go the wrong way down one way streets, ride footpaths and basically break every traffic law in the book, both of us laughing like idiots.
After about 10 minutes we arrive at a Yamaha dealership.
He goes inside and returns a couple of minutes later with the chief mechanic who also speaks English!
I tell him the problem with the bike and he asks if I am a mechanic, I say yes and the next thing I know my bike is on his spare workbench and he tells me I can use the workshop and his tools to repair my own bike!
I thank the Varadero rider as best I can in English, I shake his hand, he slaps me on the back and rides away.
After a couple of hours I have narrowed the problem down to either a faulty rear fuel injector or faulty wiring to the rear fuel injector, but the shop is about to shut for the day now so I decide to limp to Le Havre 50 miles away for my last night, at least if I can make it to Le Havre, then I can push the bike onto the ferry tommorow if I have to.
I thank the mechanic in the shop and leave some money in his tool box as he would not accept it from me personnaly.
Im really touched by the kindness and generosity of the Varadero rider and the people in the Yamaha shop, none of them had to help me but all of them did.
Can you see that happening in England?
The next 50 miles to Le Havre were nerve racking as the bike lurched and farted all the way there.
After what seemed like eternity I make it into town and find a cheap hotel with a garage near the ferry port.
That night I had dinner in the worlds dirtiest cafe, had a drink with a barmaid in her 60's with the breasts of a 20 year old, and got locked out of my hotel for a while until the security gaurd finally decided to wake up and let me in to get some sleep after what had been a long hard day.
I hope the bike starts tommorow!
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My trip to Millau (France) and back 2009.http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hub...u-france-43474

Last edited by adrian74; 27 Sep 2009 at 02:07. Reason: Spelling.
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  #19  
Old 3 Sep 2009
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Happy Days

Reminded me of my first solo trip to france, scotland-dover-calais-troyes-annecy and monaco,2006, Been to la rochelle this year, 2 up on yam xjr 1300, got drenched most days so my bike touring days were over, yam replaced with kwak zx10r for quick blast outs, now after reading your story i find myself planning a solo trip to barcelona on the kwak, inspired once again, cheers pal
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  #20  
Old 3 Sep 2009
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Great report, I'm enjoying reading it! What sort of prices were you paying for hotels/campsites on average would you say?
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  #21  
Old 3 Sep 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bengybull View Post
Reminded me of my first solo trip to france, scotland-dover-calais-troyes-annecy and monaco,2006, Been to la rochelle this year, 2 up on yam xjr 1300, got drenched most days so my bike touring days were over, yam replaced with kwak zx10r for quick blast outs, now after reading your story i find myself planning a solo trip to barcelona on the kwak, inspired once again, cheers pal
Thats good, im glad this trip report has inspired you to get back travelling again.
In my opinion travelling solo is the way to go as you are not tied to anyone else's schedule and also it forces you to interact with the local people, and the best memories I have are the experiences I had with the locals.
Only problem now is that I find riding in the U.K. to be pretty dull, thats why im off home to Ireland on the ferry with the v-strom tommorrow night for 3 days!
P.S. Post a trip report when you get back from Spain, I quiet fancy a ride down to Barcelona or Madrid early next year, it would be nice to hear of your experiences down there.
Slan.
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My trip to Millau (France) and back 2009.http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hub...u-france-43474
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  #22  
Old 3 Sep 2009
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Prices.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sgt Beardy View Post
Great report, I'm enjoying reading it! What sort of prices were you paying for hotels/campsites on average would you say?
Campsites were around 12 to 15 euro per night, showers on site, shop nearby etc.
Hotels were about 50 euro per night, although I stayed in a new hotel in Limoges and that cost me 95 euro!!!
Im still annoyed with myself for paying that much for one nights accomodation.
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  #23  
Old 7 Sep 2009
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Priceless

Hi Adrain, that information is priceless. My own trip has been cancelled for the time being due to circumstances but as a result I am hoping to go for a month next year. I am hoping to budget around 50 euros a day. This should cover food fuel and camping fees.
Thanks mate.....
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  #24  
Old 23 Sep 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adrian74 View Post
Campsites were around 12 to 15 euro per night, showers on site, shop nearby etc.
Hotels were about 50 euro per night, although I stayed in a new hotel in Limoges and that cost me 95 euro!!!
Im still annoyed with myself for paying that much for one nights accomodation.
Fantastic Info... thanks! Only 9 days to go till we leave now, can't wait!
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  #25  
Old 27 Sep 2009
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Friday 12th June. Last day!
I wake up at 10am and pack my gear away for the last time.
The ferry leaves at 4pm so I have a few hours to pass till then.
I head down stairs and check out, pack my bike and roll it out of the garage.
I start it up and its still only running on one cylinder.
I was going to go for a ride and explore the city of Le Havre today but I cant when the bike is running like this.
To me Le Havre looks like a down trodden city, the people here dont seem as vibrant as they do central or southern France, there are lots of run down areas and it feels like the people here have been forgotten about to a certain extent.
I was told also that Le Havre was heavily bombed by the allies while under Nazi occupation in WW2, and that 95% of the city was turned to rubble!
Seemingly the architect who had the job of rebuilding the city after the war had a great love of concrete and this is very obvious if you take a look the city's bland buildings today.
I have breakfast in a cafe, and lounge around here for a while just wasting time and watching the locals (are'nt French girls gorgeous?).
I make my way on my sickly bike to the ferry port and get in line near the front of the cue.
The weather is really nice today so I spend a couple of hours lying on the grass verge looking thru the photo's i took over the last few days and chatting with some passengers also waiting for the same ferry.
Finally we board the ferry and I make my way to the deck to take some photos of the city as we leave.
Its a strange feeling, on the one hand I feel like I've only just got here and that I need to spend another week or two here, but on the other hand when I think back on all the people I've met and the good times I've had it seems like I've been here for months!
I call home and tell my better half I'll see her in a few hours, then I go to the bar and drink about 5 or 6 coffees! and chat with some people who are also on their way home from hollidays in France.
The crossing was pretty uneventfull and very smooth and pretty soon I can see Portsmouth in the distance.
The ferry docks and I start my bike, I dont believe it, its running on both cylinders again!
I roll off, show my passport and jump on to the motorway for the last leg of my trip back to Somerset.
There is a spot at around 6k rpm where the bike goes back down onto one cylinder, but as you close off the throttle both cylinders come back online with a mighty bang.
I used this to great effect as I was passing a stationary highway agency patrol on the M27, they were standing beside their 4x4 when I came screaming past, closing the throttle and causing a massive backfire just as I drew level with them, the look on their faces allmost made me fall off the bike I was laughing so hard!
I ride thru sallisbury and join the A303, its dark now and im pretty tired but I cant wait to get home and tell my friends and family about the amazing time I've had.
I reach home and park my bike out front, I walk inside, my girlfriend is asleep on the sofa and she's got long way round on the telly.
I make us a cup of tea and start telling her stories of the trip.
Its midnight when I sit down but 4 am before my mind slows down enough to allow me to sleep.
I strip my bike the next day and sure enough I find a partially broken wire running to the rear fuel injector, some new wire and some solder sorts it out just fine.
Well thats it, my trip is over and sitting here writing this and looking back over it all is making me smile.
Even though it was only 8 days and 1548 miles long it really is one of the best things I have ever done, and I cant even imagine how good it must feel to do a round the world or trans Africa/Europe/America trip.
My family/friends/girlfriend thought I was mad to do this trip alone but I really believe alone was the best way to do it because everyone I spoke to or met along the way was someone new and it is amazing how far out of their way these people will go to help you.
Some people told me before I left that the French are rude people, well pardon my French but thats a load of bollocks.
They strike me as being a very hospitable and proud people, you just need to make an effort to speak to them in their own language using whatever little French you have (I have very little), they will appreciate this and respect you for trying.
Im thinking of next years trip allready, I cant decide between Spain/Porugal or maybe eastern Europe or maybe even the Swiss alps.
Either way its going to have to be pretty special to beat France.

Fin.
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  #26  
Old 29 Sep 2009
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YouTube - Motorcycle trip from England to Millau in France
YouTube - Motorcycle trip to France - Edited version with new music.
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My trip to Millau (France) and back 2009.http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hub...u-france-43474

Last edited by adrian74; 25 Apr 2010 at 16:21. Reason: New version.
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  #27  
Old 10 Mar 2010
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france trip

really good trip report i,ve never been abroad on my bike i think you,ve given me the inspiration to start planning my forst trip thanks
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  #28  
Old 25 Apr 2010
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Glad your inspired, starting to think about my next trip now too.
Where you thinking of going?
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  #29  
Old 25 Apr 2010
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Have a look at this ... You may be interested ... Look's like two of us so far ... More the merrier ...

http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hub...he-autum-49688
John933
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