It is with mixed emotions we announce that we have sold Pyrenees Motorcycle Tours (house and business etc) to Abby and Kevin Birch who will take over from us on 1 March 2016.
We would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has stayed with and made our time hosting the B&B and tours such a memorable and happy experience. It has been a pleasure meeting so many interesting and diverse bikers, many of whom we can truly call friends.
Before we are too old we thought we should have another adventure, this time on the other side of the world, New Zealand!
Keen bikers Abby and Kevin have had many years experience touring Europe and especially the Pyrenees, having stayed with us many times over the six years we have been operating in Vielle-Adour. We feel sure that PMT is in safe hands and will continue to provide good value accommodation and service in this part of South West France. For those of you who have made a booking and paid deposits, all of these payments have been forwarded onto Abby and Kevin and all bookings will be honoured.
If you would like to keep in touch our email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Now we would like to introduce Abby and Kevin Birch!
Firstly we would like to say a huge thank you to Phil and Belinda for their vision and hospitality over the years at Pyrenees Motorcycle Tours, we have big shoes to fill! We have always loved staying with them and we hope to be able to continue to offer the same relaxed atmosphere they have lovingly created.
We are very excited about taking over PMT as we are both mad keen bikers, even biking to Venice on our honeymoon. Although we have travelled extensively around Europe we love it here in the Pyrenees and found ourselves returning over and over.
After we had our son Edward we wanted continue to keep our petrol heads entertained so we started looking for a B&B to call home where we could welcome bikers. When we heard about Phil and Belinda’s new adventure there wasn’t a comparison and we jumped at the chance.
We are very much looking forward to welcoming those who have already booked for this year and we hope to meet many more of you in the future.
Abby, Kevin and Ed
On my way to Toulouse at 7am last November, I unexpectedly found myself sliding down the road, luckily the bike went first followed closely by me, no other vehicles were involved. Once I was back on my feet a quick phone call to ‘mission control’, who was still tucked up in bed, resulted in car and trailer arriving toute suite.
Unable to push the bike out of the ditch, so Belinda towed it out while I kept it upright.
Back in the workshop nothing that couldn’t be repaired with a tin of filler, a few cans of paint, mud guard and side panel.
Written by Dave and Janet who stayed with Pyrenees Motorcycle Tours earlier this year.
The main reason for our visit was to see if Phil could iron out the problems I sometimes have getting the bike round very tight uphill hairpin bends in the cols resulting in drifting over to the wrong side of the road. Having just bought a BMW 1600 GT I was very anxious to try and sort out this problem before our trip to Corsica.
Well, what a success! Not only was Phil able to quickly assess the problem and explain what I needed to do but, just as importantly, we were able to spend all day practicing on the trickiest cols in gorgeous scenery until I got it right. Phil’s enthusiasm to sort out my problem was infectious and gave me a lot of confidence.
I feel so much less anxious about our trip to Corsica now and I can start to enjoy the bike even more than I do already. I don’t feel at all intimidated about its size and weight any more.
So thank you both again for not only a lovely day’s riding but for leaving me with skills that can be put to good use in the future.
Started out biking in 1975 at the age of 16 and bought a new red Yamaha FS1E Fizzy costing a whole £200. I used this to get to work and to hang about with my mates on their mopeds. Didn’t get any rider training so I learned as I went along, needless to say I fell off on the first day and bent my pedals. Fell off it a few times trying to go faster and used to scrape the pedals going round the bends.
After a year I traded Fizzy in for my much loved brand new blue Suzuki GT250 1976 model costing £550. I got £150 for the fizzy which isn’t bad. I wrote the GT off the first winter. I had it only 6 months as I used it rain hail or snow. Hit ice on a bend at about 60 and low sided it causing it to be a financial write off but I bought it off the insurance company for £40 and replaced most of the damaged parts with second hand stuff. The insurance cleared my finance on it so really I got the bike cheap in the end.
Tuned the GT as per Motorcycle Mechanics mag , raising the exhaust ports and lowering the inlets plus a carb rejet. The bike was a lot quicker now. Used to run it on a Castrol R mix oh what a lovely smell. Done a few track days on it at Knockhill when I used to Marshall up there. We would be allowed on at night before the race day. One time I went on track it was a bit wet and I went round going faster every lap gaining confidence in the wet, but on the last lap I entered the first right called Duffus corner at 70 and scraped the foot peg too much and the rear lost grip and off I went. No injuries apart from cuts and bruises but the bike lost its clocks and front brake reservoir and throttle broke. I got it home after the racing next day with a set of mole grips on the throttle cable and just a back brake. Brilliant times no pain no gain.
I kept the GT for 3 years and it had done 40K miles really loved the bike still know the reg NSD411P wish I still had it. I traded it in for a new wine coloured Yamaha RD400 1979 model. Nice bike very torquey and quick. Only had it a year as I passed my car test and bought a car and got married. That was the end of biking for a while. The big Stork delivered 3 Kids to my door and Davy grew up.
I bought an old RD250 and done that up but sold it on after it was finished.
I eventually came back to biking in 2001 after a 20 year fast and bought a new 2001 Yamaha Thundercat in blue.
Well was I shocked how quick these 600s are. Handling, brakes and how well the tyres gripped in the dry and more so the wet was quite a pleasant surprise compared to my 2 stroke days.
After 9 months and 3000miles with the Cat I went into the Yamaha dealer to get a new back tyre, well I got a new back tyre but it was attached to a new 2002 Black Fazer 1000. That was the end of the Cat.
I had my 02 Fazer for 4 years and done 25k miles but the job front was poor so I sold it to my mate. I was bikeless for about a year while I found another job and got the pennies back in the bank. I picked up an old Yamaha 600 diversion for £250 and gave it some TLC and traded it in for another Fazer 1000 2005 model in silver with the black engine.
Had the this Fazer about a year and then I caught my eye on a black 2009 Hayabusa so traded the Fazer in for it. The Busa was a great bike very fast, handled well and ate back tyres like they were going out of fashion.
I kept the Busa for 3 years and 18k miles and decided to get a smoking jacket and slippers and calm down so I bought a new grey/black 2014 BMW R1200GS. It was a totally different riding style to the Busa very comfortable and relaxing.
I decided to go on a tour of Europe with it and this is how I met Phil and Belinda. I stayed with them in September 2014 and did a few ride outs with Phil and his outlaw mates, only joking a nice bunch of guys they are. Phil took me on so many brilliant routes, every day was fantastic and I can’t thank him enough for that. Sadly on one of our days out the GS fell off its side stand and broke the clutch lever and it suffered a few scrapes here and there but it was still rideable. Thankfully it didn’t fall into Phil’s Tiger or Wills GS.
So I am off to Phil and Belinda’s again September 2016, not on the GS as I got rid of the smoking jacket and slippers and I chucked it in for a new red 2015 BMW S1000R Sport in April as I found I grew to dislike the GS due to the agricultural way it ran plus I had some issues with it like smoking heavily on cold starts and surging below 50 which BM could not sort out so it was time to part company.
The S1000R is a very nice bike not as comfortable as the GS but not uncomfortable. Its mighty quick, agile and handles very well and brakes are dynamite. Looking forward to trying it out in the Cols next year.
4 Croissants 200g mushrooms sliced 200g lardons Onion thinly sliced 2 garlic gloves chopped 3tbsp crème fraîche
Add enough olive oil or butter to a pan to gently fry the onions, add the lardons, mushrooms and garlic and fry until the lardons start to brown, stir in the crème fraîche and bring to a simmer, add salt and pepper to taste. Fill the sliced croissants and bake for 5-10 mins in the oven at 200 degrees. Serve with a small side salad.
Great way of using up left over croissant 🙂
This morning we paid a second visit to the Védére café for breakfast – coffee and cake. The tea/coffee room is a converted railway carriage with many original features and period photos of the area and has a wonderful view of the Pyrenees. The biscuit/cake factory and café are next to the old railway line that ran from Tarbes to Bagneres de Bigorre and they even have a diesel locomotive sitting on rails next to the track, which is still intact.
If you are looking for somewhere to have a snack and sample the delicious cakes and biscuits they make in the factory next door they are open most days of the week. Biscuiterie Védére 423, route de la Gare, 65200 Montgaillard
Today we rode from Pyrenees Motorcycle Tours in Vielle-Adour to the Col du Tourmalet via La Mongie. As you can see from the photos there is still lots of snow in the high mountains, the road was clear to the top but its still not possible to go down the other side into Bareges, we will keep you posted on this.
Sunday 5th April saw the 22nd Ronde des Puyolles which is a enduro type course of nearly 100km set in the foothills of the Pyrenees and organised by Montgaillard Club du Moto 65. In typically French fashion there is a full meal with wine at midday and a second shorter course for those with enough energy in the afternoon. This was Mr PMT’s third attempt at taking part in an enduro event and he was helped and encouraged by his good friend Keith who was riding a GasGas 300.
Mr PMT was soooooo pleased to have succeeded this time …………. Keith was keen to do the afternoon session but his partner Mr PMT was absolutely knackered. Lunch took care of a couple of hours and the pair were then invited back to the village hall by the club for another meal later that evening which was a great honour and good fun.
The end of the second week in March saw our first guest, Mike was with us for three days and unluckily for him the weather changed dramatically for the worse the day he arrived. We set off on the first morning in steady rain but were fortunate enough to see the sun come out in the late afternoon and we even spotted a patch of dry road!
The next day we were joined by Keith on his Yamaha XT660 and Will on his BMW GS1200 it was a better start and we set off in sunshine albeit pretty cold. Not knowing if Col de Peyresourde was passable on two wheels we elected to go around it but did do Col de Portillon dropping into Spain at Bossost where we stopped for lunch and some warming cups of coffee. The next stage of the trip did not go as planned, thought we would try Col de Menté which was fine up to the top but we then encountered snow for 200m and a few patches beyond.
This is an alternative recipe for Chocolate Brownies, don’t be put off by seeing the main ingredient is sweet potatoes, they are delicious and a healthy alternative!
600g sweet potatoes 14 Medjool dates, pitted 80g ground almonds 100g wholemeal flour 8 tablespoons coco powder 3 tablespoons honey Pinch salt
This is based on a recipe from Deliciously Ella – I had to substitute some of ingredients as required by Ella as they are not available in the local supermarket in France.