Posts in Category: Rideouts

Rebuilding the VFR (again)

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.

Honda VFR

Unexpected parking in the ditch

Honda VFR off roading

Not built for off roading …..

Unable to push the bike out of the ditch, so Belinda towed it out while I kept it upright.

Naked Honda VFR

Naked Honda VFR, time for some ebay action!

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.

New and repaired plastics

Taking advantage of some good weather to dry the paint.

Warming by the woodburner

Warming by the woodburner, for that baked finish :)

Honda VFR Pyrenees Motorcycle Tours

Colour matched panels!

Honda VFR Hourquette d'Ancizan 1564m

Looking all shiny and new, not bad for 100k miles.

 

Do you have trouble with Hairpins?

Written by Dave and Janet who stayed with Pyrenees Motorcycle Tours earlier this year.

Dave and Janet on Col d'Aspin with their white BMW 1600GT

Dave and Janet on Col d’Aspin with their white BMW 1600GT

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.

Riding the beutiful Col d'Azet with snow capped mountains, does it get any better!

Riding the beutiful Col d’Azet with snow capped mountains, does it get any better!

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.

Next stop Col de Menté for a spot of lunch.  Best lunch stop - mushroom omelette, salad and chips and watch the vultures circling the high mountains

Next stop Col de Mente for a spot of lunch – best lunch stop mushroom omelette, salad and chips watching vultures circling the high mountains

Col de Menté hairpins, if you need practice this a great route for it.

Col de Menté hairpins, if you need practice this a great route for it.

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.

Dave and Janet making the descent from Col de Menté.

Dave and Janet making the descent from Col de Menté.

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.

Is Col du Tourmalet open yet?

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.

Snow on Col du Tourmalet

Snow on Col du Tourmalet

Snow on Col du Tourmalet

Snow on Col du Tourmalet

Mr PMT concentrating on the Honda VFR 750

Mr PMT concentrating on the Honda VFR 750

Plenty of riders out today, this group were from Lyon in France

Plenty of riders out today, this group were from Lyon in France

Looking down in Bareges from the Col du Tourmalet

Looking down in Bareges from the Col du Tourmalet

There are three people skiing in this photo!

There are three people skiing in this photo!

More bikers on their way up the Col du Tourmalet

More bikers on their way up the Col du Tourmalet

Bikers taking advantage of the beautiful weather on the Col du Tourmalet

Bikers taking advantage of the beautiful weather on the Col du Tourmalet

First ‘ride-out’ for 2015

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!

Mike with his Kawasaki ER6 on the Col du Soulor

Mike with his Kawasaki ER6 on the Col du Soulor

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.

Snow on Col de Menté

Snow on Col de Menté

Mike just stopped to put his gloves on!

Mike just stopped to put his gloves on!

 

From the fens to the Pyrenees

This week saw an old school friend of Mrs PMT return for her third visit this time with her husband, son, son’s friend and ‘Marvin’.  With very mixed weather and the threat of rain each day they were all still keen to get out there and enjoy the three ride outs on the fantastic roads the Pyrenees offers.  On their last day Will and Tom (two local lads) joined us for the ride to Col de Menté at a height of 1349m.  We would like to thank Will for taking some good action shots of the days ride.

Parking

Col de Menté is a challenging route with some very tight hairpins

Two VFR's

Lorraine and Barry on their red Honda VFR, closely followed by ‘Alvin’on his white Honda VFR

James on his Honda CBR600

James taking a good line on his Honda CBR600 (Mr PMT in the background)

Honda Fireblade and BMW

Christopher, concentrating hard, on his Honda Fireblade followed by Tom on a BMW 1200GS

BMW GS1200

Tom joined us for the rideout on a BMW GS1200

Taking in the beautiful views at Col de Menté

James, ‘Malcolm’ (Kelvin), Lorraine, Barry, Christopher and Tom taking in the beautiful views at Col de Menté

 

Its Sunny, its Sunday, its Soulor

Phils son Ed is with us for the week from Australia and he has missed riding roads with bends and free from kangaroos.

Special machine is needed to work at steep angles

Special machine is needed to work at steep angles

Repairing the road up to Soulor

Repairing the road up to Soulor

Col du Soulor

Col du Soulor

Ed making the bends look easy

Ed making the bends look easy

Ed is soon into the swing of things.

Ed is soon into the swing of things.

Descent from Soulor into Argeles.

Descent from Soulor into Argeles.

Anyone know what make this car is?

Anyone know what make this car is?

View of the interior.

View of the interior.

G'day mate :)

G’day mate :)

Mrs PMT unchained from the kitchen sink for the afternoon :)

Mrs PMT unchained from the kitchen sink for the afternoon :)

"I'm telling you Ed, that tyre was alright until you got on the bike"!

“I’m telling you Ed, that tyre was alright until you got on the bike”!

Shad plus 10

We have just had an eventful and busy week with 11 bikes and riders staying with us.  This is the largest group we have ever had stay and it was for most their third visit.

Just arrived, nine beers, one coffee and one tea - Harry joining in too :)

Just arrived, nine beers, one coffee and one tea – Harry joining in too :)

 

All lined up and ready for a days ride in the French and Spanish Pyrenees- dry roads :)

All lined up and ready for a days ride in the French and Spanish Pyrenees- dry roads :)

Fag break - one of many!

Fag break – one of many!

Regrouping in Spain

Regrouping in Spain

Another fag break

Another fag break

Port de Bonaigua. Spanish Pyrenees.

Port de Bonaigua. Spanish Pyrenees.

Honda SP2 steering head bearing inspection.

Honda SP2 steering head bearing inspection.

Shad looking worried having dismantled his bike for further inspection.

Shad looking worried having dismantled his bike for further inspection.

Shad now looking happier now all is going back together and the problem sorted.

Shad now looking happier now all is going back together and the problem sorted.

KTM Super Duke on the ramp after oil leak problem is solved.  Triumph Tiger 1050 has a timing chain problem.

KTM Super Duke on the ramp after oil leak problem is solved. Triumph Tiger 1050 has a timing chain problem.

Previous night we were up 'till 1am working on the bikes.

Previous night we were up ’till 1am working on the bikes.

End of the trip for the Triumph :(

End of the trip for the Triumph :(

Pete, Dave and Martin behind bars ....

Pete, Dave and Martin behind bars ….

Regroup on the D441

Regroup on the D441

Time for another fag?

Time for another fag?

Lunch stop

Lunch stop

L to R: Dave, Nick, Andy, Geoffrey, Minky, Slugs, Frank, Pete, Nick, Shad, Martin

L to R: Dave, Nick, Andy, Geoffrey, Minky, Slugs, Frank, Pete, Nick, Shad, Martin

Five go touring

We have just waved off our first group of bikers led by Steve Bunce (Buncey) who hosts Adventure Bike Touring – Witney, they stayed with us for four nights and had two rideouts with Mr PMT and were joined on both days by local legend Keith on his Yamaha XT660.

Weather on the whole was kind to us (bearing in mind its was April), we had a big run the first day crossing into Spain at Pourtalet and tried an off road track that the map said was accessible to motor vehicles but it lied ……..  but I think the boys enjoyed the challenge. We came back via the Bielsa Tunnel on to be told it was closed and not opening until  8pm, luckily for us we hung around for a while and for whatever reason they opened it early, thereby avoiding  a 3 hour detour which would have meant us being late for dinner!!  To add to the drama of the day Rob who was riding a BMW1150GS lost his back brake due to the old fluid boiling and then found the front reservoir to be nearly empty due to the master cylinder leaking.  We had a fluid collection to top his front brake up and then fixed it the following day.

Our second rideout was a lot shorter and we just kept on the French side of the Pyrenees, not such good weather today it didnt rain but we had damp low cloud which made one part, the ‘Scottish Route’, quite difficult.  We all had a bike swap and Mr PMT rode a BMW1200GS Watercooled and a much older Honda 650 Transalp.   He was quite impressed with both bikes 🙂