I personally like to keep it simple.
- First, I get the most detailed maps I can find. That way, I find all the great little roads that don’t show up on the general Alpine maps. I provide each rider a fairly detailed map of the alpine region that almost always shows all our routes. I can also direct you to a good source of maps, and their website, here in the states that will have all the detailed maps you might want.
- Next, I bring along a copy of John Hermann’s “Motorcycle Journeys Through the Alps & Beyond”. I had the pleasure of riding with John during my two Beach’s trips in the mid-eighties. He was a knowledgeable and entertaining individual back then, and it is clear from his book that he has become more so since. My favorites aren’t necessarily the same as John’s but his book is full of useful information, local knowledge and is a great referral source.Whitehorse Press also sells a video entitled “Motorcycle Tour of the Alps Video” which can be purchased as a set with John Hermann’s book or separately. The video is taken on a motorcycle while riding through several major passes that we tour in the Andermatt and Cortina areas. I don’t agree with all the commentary but the video, complete with the sound of the motorcycle shifting through the gears, is pretty good.
- Finally, I add my own strong sense of curiosity. I love to explore and have no problem going down a dead end mountain road just to see what’s there. Sometimes, you find some special treats, sometimes just pleasant scenery. Either way, it’s good riding. I try to make it a point to spend at least 20%-25% of my time on roads that I haven’t tried yet. The more I go back, the harder it gets but, not that hard.
If you want to order a copy of John Hermann’s book from Whitehorse Press the web address is shown below. When you are finished at Whitehorse click on the “back” button of your browser to return to MOTO-CHARLIE.com.