Willi on Tour
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February 12th 2013

 

 

 

 

 

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snowball fight at Fluela passAfter we had now resolved the "spontaneous" loss of power problem with Willi's motorbike, we kicked off another extensive snowball fight in the glorious sunshine before we made our way down to the Engadine and the Inn Valley. Yes, it is an advantage to do a motorbike tour in the early June, when the first passes have been cleaned and are opened up and go on a Grisons motorcycle tour. Flowering meadows in the valley, still snow on the pass heights and which of course is much more important, the chance for good weather with clear distance view for the most beautiful photos is nearly guaranteed.

Down in the Engadine valley we take a right and follow the Inn River upstream to St. Moritz. We ride through St. Moritz and pass the beautiful lakes of the Upper Engadine and then dive down across the Maloja pass into the Val Bregaglia (germ. Bergell). In the Bergell you will find the exit to the famous and well known Septimer pass which has in some sections still primitive Roman road surface.

 Willi told me during a break on the Maloja Pass from a possible detours in Bregaglia which I do not want to mention here. This will become part of another travel report.

Where you can get real Italian specialties
While we are riding,
the temperature slowly increases and since the border is nearby, we already feel the atmosphere of Italy. Its our plan to ride back across the Spluegen pass and pass through the town of Chiavenna back to Heinzenberg mountain and the Grisons. We cross the border in Castasegna and are now in Italy, in the province of Lombardy. But just a view yards after the border, God has created in the small village named Villa di Chiavenna, the Grotta of Ghiggi.

What, you do not know what a Grotta is? Well, first of all a rustic Italian guesthouse with excellent food and a fabulous Italian cuisine. In addition its a rock cellar, stocked with the finest Italian food specialties. I definitely have to highly recommend to visit a Grotta once in your life. If you visit one here in the province of Lombardy or in the province of Ticino, if here at Ghiggi or on the south side of the Lukmanier pass. It is a culinary experience and actually contains everything what "Bella Italia" really means that you can feel through the stomach.

Here at Ghiggi you can purchase everything which the Italian gastronomic heart offers . All sorts of cheese, Modena vinegar, hand pressed olive oil, air dried salami, ham, bacon in all variations and home made liquor. We have made that motorbike tour down the Bregaglia so many times but we have never seen this place before. I'm just glad that I don’t have too much space in my motorbike topcase and travel suitcases, since my wife immediately started a shopping tour. But just look yourselves.

The panoramic picture below can be loaded by just clicking on it. It is a Pixmaker - EXE file (383KB). You may store it on your PC and run it. It is a rolling 230 ° degree panoramic view of the Grotta Ghiggi. You can go easily on a virtual shopping trip and when you travel next time there in that region, then for God's sake do not ride past, but just test some spaghetti and Italian entrees.

The Grotta of Ghiggi
But every good day is sometimes drawing to an end and sitting at Ghiggis’ makes the time fly by. With a filled stomach and still a great taste on our tongues, we take the way back on the path to Chiavenna. Today, after that dining experience we do not paln another stop at Chiavenna at the roundabout. Here, where the road branches off to the right in the direction Spluegen pass, just at the right hand side, directly at the roundabout, there is a cute little Italian bar serving excellent espresso and Italian ice. Today, however, we only briefly waved to the bikers, and then we rode up the Spluegen pass in the evening light.

We should have known it. Of course Willy does know the border guards. A longer chat with those guys about the weather and the daily news and the guards simply wave us through. We continue down into the Rhine Valley take a right on the old Bernardino Pass road to Andeer, Zillis and through the Via Mala canyon, passing the village Thusis and return to the mountain inn Beverin. And, oh yes, of course, there we met the motorbike riders from the Fluela pass who wanted to spend the night with here in the Berggasthaus Beverin. The laughter of course was immense to meet the same guy again who had done that famous rain dance because of his Bandit. Well, the worls is a town. So we close the day with a Grisons specialty named Kapuns, a famous home made Qöllfrisch beer from the Appenzell region and just feel good.

Or how the Swiss say – Sali, see you next time

 

 

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