Favorite Rides & Destinations

Fall 2017

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www.FavoriteRidesAndDestinations.com | ridermagazine.com PAGE 45 FALL 2017 ISSUE 02 / VOL. 02 was going like Stinkenblitzen over fast, bumpy asphalt, with granite posts for guardrails and thousand-foot drops. Why did I insist on keeping up? For the same reason I rode a bicycle through our garage door in 1965, I imagine. Not far behind me were Scott's father, Joe, 73, and their buddy, Soup Campbell, 72. "Jeez", I thought. "Am I supposed to be going this fast when I'm 73?" That night, at dinner in Pontresina, Switzerland, Christian reviewed the day. "Remember when you said this was not a race?" I asked. He nodded. "You were right," I said. "It's not a race. It's qualifying." GERMATALIAN? ITALIDEUTSCH? On Day 2 we wiggled to the west, through an outcrop of Italy and back into Switzerland. When I take my final trip through here—hopefully a long time from now—I may still be able to ride. But I will probably have no idea what country I'm in. The Swiss/Italian border looks like one of those black firework snakes I used to light in our backyard. The official language of Switzerland is that there is no official language. Italians in Italy's Sudtirol speak German. Even the place names are problematic. Are we on the Passo dello Stelvio? No, this is the Stilfserjoch. Which are the same thing. We veered south toward Lake Como, then back up the Splügenpass, a road that winds up the face of a sheer granite cliff. Left onto the treeless Passo del San Bernardino, where the houses look the same as they did 5,000 years ago, rugged piles of stone with people inside. We trolled through Andermatt, Switzerland, where four passes—the Furka, the St. Gotthard, the Oberalp and the Susten—run into each other. Guidess Angela de Haan can ride anything fast, and do it while watching eight riders getting lost in her mirrors.

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