Europe 2017

Saturday August 5, 2017
Saas Fee to Andermatt

Sunday August 6, 2017

Monday August 7, 2017
Bike up Furka Pass and Oberalp Pass

Sunday morning was very overcast - I could barely see the train tracks from my room.
I checked online, the webcam from Furkapass showed nothing but gray fog, I couldn't even tell for sure it was working cause there was nothing in the picture.
I ventured out every couple of hours to check the weather to see if there was any chance of cycling today.
Every time I went out the answer was no, it is a cold, rainy, and crappy day in the Alps...
The motorcyclists I saw looked fairly harried as riding a motorcycle on hairpin turns on mountain roads in the rain can't be very relaxing or fun.
I abstained from the Fendant and beer in hopes that the weather would clear.

2017-08-06 10:08

The Gotthard Pass Stagecoach, probably the most interesting thing I saw all day

2017-08-06 10:11

2017-08-06 10:14

The Lotus on the left had several gopros attached to it.

2017-08-06 15:51

I spent the day watching the Track and Field championship in London on the idiot tube

Eventually I gave up waiting for the rains to clear and the bar in my room opened...
I went with the Fendant...

2017-08-06 17:45

I decided to eat, I was the only one at Gasthaus zum Sternen.
It hadn't rained hard all day until I was eating dinner, fortunately I was under the canopy..

2017-08-06 18:02

The menu had 'gourmet rosti' - with smoked salmon, crème fraîche, pesto, cheese, wild garlic, and courgettes.
I'd already had rosti for two meals in a row but I couldn't resist smoked salmon, and it was one of the best meals I'd ever eaten.
All very subtle flavors, but they were amazing together...

2017-08-06 18:30

Struddle seemed mandatory...

Meanwhile in Italy...
Ray:  'on way to Salerno.  Decided not to wait for breakfast'
Paul woke up very early to climb Sentiero degli dei, Path of the Gods
Paul texted
'this climb is no joke.  I thought for sure I would beat the first bus load to the trailhead, but there was a bus from the other direction that came in at 8am.
those bastards avoided the 2000 vertical '
Me - 'is the gondola closed?'

Paul's pic

Paul's pic

Paul's pic

Paul's pic

Paul - 'perfect little table to break out the breakfast and wine'

Paul - ' i just interected with the traverse trail from below.  The sign pointing down to where I had just come from said 'Complete Danger!'
maybe an overstatement but quite the heartpounding scramble
Ray had breakfast in Salerno, then went on to Paestum

Ray's pic of Paestum

He tried to park right next to the ruins, got yelled at. 
I told him he was supposed to ride through the ruins.
Paestum was ok when he got there but heated up as usual

Paul - ferry stopover in Capri.  'I liked Amalfi much better than Positano - less clausterphobic and less ultra rich people.  Younger too I think.
'I drank a bottle of white on my hike that was cultivated from grapes grown on the side of Vesuvius.  Then a lemoncello drink.  Seems like its beer time now'

Kent 'arrived a dom hut!  big hike up.  Was in clouds nearly entire hike up.   Kept me from getting hot, but was humid. 

Kent's pic

Kent's pic

Kent's pic
Kent: 'In hut got bunk.  Dinner at 6:30.  Wake up and go for it at 2:30am.  Beer is only 6.5chf!'

Ray 'I thought I was making decent time, then a guy flew by 2-3 feet from me at about 150mph, maybe more.  Woke me up more than my doppio macchiato!
Paul - 'just got to my hotel in Sorrento.  Seems very cool but much bigger town them I expected.  Seems 10x amalfi and I was expecting 2x.

Ray 'just got to Santa Maria Capua Vetere.  Ghost town!  Everything's closed except my hotel and ruins.'

Ray 'Freaking amazing ruins outside my room.  Just checked into this 2 unit B&B.  Owner assures me that there are a few bars and restaurants open today
'200 chairs for a concert up at the ruins. 

Ray 'this town is not as good as it looked on Street View, but the ruins are definitely cool'.
Ray 'Paul's turned me into an alcoholic. 
I am getting bold. 
I just told the manager of Jambon Baquettes that 3eu is expensive for this beer and it was half that in Naples.
I'll let you know if I get my ass kicked. 
The panino is good, though'.
Ray 'classical concert starts at 8pm.  I reserved a free seat but may just watch from the outside because everyone arriving so far it dressed to hilt'.
Paul 'Paul passed out in the air conditioning for 3 hours.  Big hike plus wine and beer zapped me a bit!'
Ray 'I know the feeling.  I took an hour nap in my wonderfully cool ACd room.  Now I'm buzzy on my 3rd pricely Poretti.  The carabinieri just showed up.  This must be a serious party'

Kent 'the hut has grown quiet.  As it should with a 2:30am wake up!.  Clouds have disappeared!  Met an interesting British guy who lives in Chamonix and climbed Dom today.
Was fun dinner in the hut.'
'I'm dreading the 5000' more up and 10000' down tomorrow.  Yikes!  My legs are going to be worked!'

Paul 'Gangsters Paradise and Kebab'
'I officially take back anything bad I have ever said about Rick Steves. 
The man is a god. 
I just had the best kebab of my life thanks to him, and that is saying alot'

Ray heard theme from Gladiator, then Mars / Way, then orchestra played during a poetry reading / story telling.

Paul 'Holy cow. John Denver's Country Road just as popular [here] as when I was in Thailand in 92. 
Absolutely everybody goes nuts for it. Honestly chilling.
Closing down another bar in Sorrento. 
Bowie's Starman on now. 
The Italians like to sing!'

Saturday August 5, 2017
Saas Fee to Andermatt

Sunday August 6, 2017

Monday August 7, 2017
Bike up Furka Pass and Oberalp Pass