Day 6 - Riva del Garda to Chur, Switzerland
A loooooong day today, and in the end turned out to be around a ten hour journey with a good nine hours of riding time in there. That brings the total to nudging on 2000 miles in the last five days and it is fair to say that despite the Burgman's comfy seat and my smug comments in previous posts about bikers, the only feeling in my bum cheeks now is unmitigated pain!
From Riva, a last view of the lake, then the first destination was the border town of Tirano which is mostly in Italy but then the Main Street pokes up into the hills and a few hundred meters along it is the border into Switzerland. As last time, the entire EU/Non-EU border crossing is a real time-consuming nightmare, involving slowing down a bit so a bored border guard just waves you on, and that's it. Not exactly the bureaucratic hell that the anti-Brexit campaigners keep promising will be unleashed upon us.
After Tiorano the road climbs and climbs until you reach the pass in this photo of the Burgman. Lovely fresh cold air and a quiet road, perfect. From the pass in these photos (and the one below with the glacier in the background of the Burgman) it was then down to St Moritz which is pretty enough but rather 'meh' and is presumably much better in the snow, and then on into more mountains. By mid-afternoon, to be honest I really was not in the mood for more hours of bum-pain, especially when it culminated in the town of Chur, which I can only describe as being the closest thing to an Alpine Salford I can think of. I'm sure it has a pretty centre, but that is a small kernel surrounded by industrial grimness. And the hotel turning out to be some kind of serial-killer motel thing on a main road which didn't help my sunny disposition either.
The less time spent in Chur the better, and tomorrow is carrying on across Switzerland east to west to the Verbier area which hopefully will be a little less 'industrial northern town' and more 'Adventures of Heidi' again. By the way, and only people over 40 will understand this - did you know that Swiss people's mouths do actually move in time with their words? Amazing. Heidi and Peter the goatherd lied to us...