Black Forest & Vosges Mountains Tour  20 – 26 August 2014
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The group at the end of the first section of the famous B500 -  great riding and some lovely guests made for yet another good tour
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We start with a pre-tour briefing at Calais before meeting a few more at the Tunnel. Bikes lined up at lunchtime
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” This was the first pre-organised motorcycle tour Val and I have been on. The organisation that had been put into it by John and Jen was fantastic. Throughout the whole trip, they were very helpful, as were John and Rita (the back-markers) and Tim (the van driver) Also what made it a great holiday were the fantastic roads, hotels, and the other riders / pillions who took part. Its a shame Vera went AWOL though.
Many thanks, and we will see you on another trip. Regards, ” 
Dave & Val Burlingham, BMW R1200RT
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Lovely scenery riding through Belgium
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“Thank you all for a fantastic tour, beautiful scenery, great roads, and great hotels, and most of all a great bunch of people. Special thanks to Dave for the entertainment!”
Mike Sanders (4th trip) & Tracey Reading (2nd trip), Kawasaki Z1000SX
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Madagascar??? Thought we were in France!   Our hotel for the first night in the Belgian Ardennes
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“Firstly, a VERY BIG THANK YOU for a wonderful trip … As always very professional and well organised. I’ve attached an article that Mo has written for our Mag [Oakley Motorcycle Club] which I was so pleased to receive.  As I mentioned at the beginning of the tour, this was her first European and long haul trip!  The article is testament to what a fabulous tour you provide. Thank you again and you can be sure that we WILL all be back ….”
Kirsty Eaton with Steve (2nd visits), BMWK1300S
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Chris samples the local brew “Kwak” !    Edwin & Jennifer – drinks before dinner
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“I can only say thanks again for a marvelous trip. Really enjoyed making Lisa sit through all of the video I took of the roads and riding so she felt suitably sick at having missed it!the memories of the trip won’t fade quickly as I had so much fun! The Black Forest and Vosges Mountains is just the perfect tour. The routes are great taking in the best of the Black Forest and Vosges roads and the hotels are great. John and Jen as ever you do a fantastic job. Cheers again”
Chris Boddy (2nd visit), Kawasaki ZZR1400
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“Well what can we say – 10 out 10 for  a  well organised  trip. Good hotels and a very good crowd of people. Thanks to Jen for leading the troops, John and Tm bringing the armory and John and Rita for bringing up the rear. The wife did get a bit saddle sore but did enjoy the company. 
PS Dave is with us but Vera’s done a runner…PPS – think she was punctured! Au revoir”
Edwin and Jennifer Finney, Triumph Speedmaster
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What a fantastic week – without a doubt some of the most enjoyable riding I have had for a long while. I have just sat and looked through the photos on the testimonials page of your website. There are some excellent shots there. Keep up the good work.”
Derek Brown (2nd visit), BMW GS1200
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Warm enough for drinks outside… Dinner our first night is included in the hotel restaurant
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“Thanks so much to you both, also Tim and John and Rita for a fantastic tour, so well organised.  This was our first tour and we didn’t know what to expect, but we had a fabulous week with a great bunch of people, wonderful scenery and roads.  See you again soon.”
Les Beresford & Sandra Hooley, Triumph Bonneville
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Many thanks again for a wonderful trip, the riding was exceptional and the company was brilliant.  Some brilliant riding, great roads and very well organised and executed throughout. I love the pictures and write up on your website, so good to see the pictures and reminders of this wonderful tour. We will get Mo’s article in our magazine and no doubt on our website too…We’ll be back for the Picos and Pyrenees next year!”
Paul Butler & Stephanie Chou (2nd visits), Suzuki Hayabusa
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Breakfast is taken in the conservatory…A misty start the next morning
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Bikes parked up at lunchtime
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Our hotel in Baden Baden
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Beers as soon as we arrive !!
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Val & Stuart…Stephanie & Paul
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Tracey & Mike…Some opt to dine in the hotel restaurant on a free night
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Those who choose ribs have to wear bibs !!
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We’re all offered complimentary Schnapps – Cheers!!
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The bikes lined up outside our hotel…always a morning briefing before we set off
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Jen waits at the end of the B500 where we all regroup – first to arrive Derek Brown on his BMW1200GS followed by Peter Hickles on his Kawasaki Z1000SX
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Chris Boddy on his Kawasaki ZZR1400 followed by Paul Butler & Stephanie Chou on their Suzuki GSXR1300 Hayabusa
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Andrew & Jane Olney on their Honda Pan European ST1300 and Stuart & Val Heath on their Kawasaki Versys 1000
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David & Mo Simms stuck behind traffic on a Honda Blackbird!  Steve Bold & Julia Muir on their Suzuki V-Strom 1000
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Mike Sanders & Tracey Reading on their Kawasaki Z1000SX…Steve & Kirsty Eaton on their BMW K1300S
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Dave & Val Burlingham on their BMW R1200RT with Dave Woolliscroft on his Suzuki V-Strom 650
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Les Beresford & Sandra Hooley on their Triumph Bonneville followed by Edwin & Jennifer Finney on their Triumph Speedmaster…with John & Rita Gates – our “backmarkers” – on their Honda Crossdresser(!) bringing up the rear
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We stop for coffee at the pretty town Freudenstadt
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Our next stop the biggest cuckoo clock in the world
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But first – anyone for a waltz?  Jen & Derek have four left feet!! While Val & Stuart show us how it’s really done!
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The group before the cuckoo clock – John makes us wait until 2.00pm to see & hear the cuckoo cuckoo!!
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Steve & Kirsty in the cuckoo clock souvenir shop
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Lunch at Triberg where there are plenty of shopping opportunities
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Our hotel for two nights at Schluchsee in the Southern Black Forest
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Just what is going on here??? All is revealed – literally – later on during dinner!!  John has his first beer in 6 months!
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Dinner is included on our first night at Schluchsee
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And for dessert – what else but Black Forest Gateau as enjoyed by Les & Sandra
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Edwin & Jennifer celebrate 38 years and Val & Stuart celebrate 33 years of marriage – Congratulations !
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And then the fun starts!!! Steve brings in “Vera” – a gift for Dave who is a single guy on the tour – who needs friends like these??
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“Thank you John & Jen for a great week of good roads, good company and great hospitality, despite all the ‘P’ taking. We never did find out what Steve and Julia were really looking for when they bought Vera!? Kind regards,”
Dave Woolliscroft, 3rd visit, Suzuki V-Strom 650
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He loves her really!!!
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Vera gets passed around…first Mike checks her out – then Julia gets a feel !!!
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Paul & Stephanie enjoying watching the fun & games…John & Rita are not really up for a threesome!!
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The lake at Schluchsee
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On the day off a few join the ride-out to the High Rhine waterfalls in Switzerland
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Dave gets a “Vera” keyring and Rita gives Jen a puppy “Della” !!
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Our morning briefing before we head towards the Vosges Mountains – with coffee & cake stop en-route
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John & Tim     Julia & Steve
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Lunch on top of the Col Schlucht
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Take the ski-lift up and race down in a luge
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Just don’t forget to raise the bar & jump off as Stuart, Dave, Julia & Steve almost did !!!!
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First to go down are Stephanie & Paul
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Jane sets off with Dave, followed by Andy & Derek
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Dave & Mike,  Steve & Stuart
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Peter with Julia,   Steve & Kirsty
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Chris sets off alone (fearing Jen might beat him!) but rolled out of his luge !!  Stephanie beats Paul !!
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The group in the Vosges Mountains
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Stunning views
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Our penultimate night is at Epinal    Lunch stop the next day on our way to Pierrefonds
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Our hotel for the last night with views over the lake & castle
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Our final dinner together
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On behalf of the group Paul says some words of thanks and presents some cards and gifts…
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First to Tim Hale as Van Driver, next to John & Rita as “Back Markers”
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Then to us – John & Jen – thank you all again for the fab present!
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John says a few words then presents Tim with an orange high-viz jacket to mark his 10th visit (2nd as van driver)
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Then a very special presentation to Dave – some Aloe Vera !!!
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It’s Julia’s birthday today!
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Then the jokes start…John & Tim…John Gates
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Tim again followed by Stuart
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Edwin and then Paul
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John again – “Ith it Dithco??”     John G “Tuti Fruti”
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Jen takes a turn
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Great views of the Castle from our hotel
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Our final morning briefing before we head back to Calais
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Lunch stop at Albert with time to visit the 1916 Museum.
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Brilliant riding, time-keeping and quick fuel stops meant everything ran smoothly on this Tour – thanks to everyone and we hope to see many of you again on future trips. Regards John & Jen