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TDAF2016 – Day7: Dual carriage, normal, single lane… no road at all.

Today gave us a comprehensive mix of everything we like about our trips: cruising along a coastal road, lots of small towns and villages, super-small roads, very steep climbs, beautiful views and very friendly encounters with people we met along the road.

Our trip starts after a warm farewell by the hotel staff. Our day off yesterday sees us back on the road, very much looking forward to what today will bring us.

We’re very happy that there are some clouds in the sky – every time we drive into the sun, it gets very hot really quickly.

The roads are in good condition and with TW560 mostly in cruise controlled mode, our consumption drops below 45Wh/km, which is very good given all the weight we’re carrying.

Ligurian coastal road

Ligurian coastal road


 
A closed road and wrong interpretation of a detour sign saw us entering the Autostrada for about 10km – Italian drivers reaction ranged from ecstatic to incredulous. It was fun, while it lasted but we wouldn’t want to drive longer stretches – too little to see, too much energy consumption. For the last few km we even had our own Carabinieri (Police) escort who right at the end overtook us and gave us beaming thumbs-up’s. šŸ™‚

Our 'detour' ends here.

Our ‘detour’ ends here.


 
Having arrived at Genoa, we start climbing up the hills just behind the city. I had chosen a new route though the nature park, after our stunning first visit to this region two years ago.

Our climb starts at a very small road heading up into the forest. Now and then, at a hair-pin bend, we get a glimpse of the sea.

Bye-bye sea (or so we thought)

Bye-bye sea (or so we thought)


 
The road got steeper and steeper up until to the point where JC had to get out for TW560 to actually be still able to move uphill! The motor was overheating due to max power and no airflow. Haven’t had this kind of gradient in a while!

Eventually, after letting the motor cool down, we finally made it to the top – it definitely was worth it … again!

It was very steep getting up here!

It was very steep getting up here!


 
Views from up there were breathtaking. We stayed for a while and took in the scenery.

Genoa (0m) righthand side, we're at 800m 10km later.

Genoa (0m) righthand side, we’re at 800m 10km later.


 
As always – if there is no higher place to drive to, the only way is down… we got the same medicine like on our way up: extremely small and steep roads – I was able to capture the kind of hair-pin bend we had many times on the way down. One try, no guard rails, no margin for error and no space for oncoming traffic. See for yourself.

Extremely steep hair-pin bends

Extremely steep hair-pin bends


 
For the next 60km we had what we like best: drive up and down hills from one small and sleepy village/farm to the next. Most of these roads would have been UN-findable without our trip-prep process we’ve used for the last 5 years. (more on that some other time.)

Us and the road ... and no-one else!

Us and the road … and no-one else!


 
Sun, TWIKEing, and a deserted road - just what we like

Sun, TWIKEing, and a deserted road – just what we like


 
Just us - Italian hinterland

Just us – Italian hinterland


 
And then, even with all our QA prior to the trip: The road just ended. Washed away a few years ago, no-one bothered to restore it. Just 20m further and clearly visible, there it was: the continuation of our road. We were just very happy to have been able to stop in time. šŸ˜®

The end of the road... literally!

The end of the road… literally!


 
As two years ago, the fun in the hills is only short-lived after getting flatter, within just one km, suddenly we’re in the Pianura of the Po river.

Slowly the hills are getting flatter again.

Slowly the hills are getting flatter again.


 
Thanks to constant high-speed internet on the go, I was able to find a very nice B&B in the town of Voghera.

Finally, a flat stretch

Finally, a flat stretch


 
We enter the town center – a massive space complete with cathedral and galleries all around it.

Voghera town center

Voghera town center


 
Driving would be hell, so we didn’t try – why? See the following picture!

TWIKE-killers.

TWIKE-killers.


 
The owners of Corte delle Rose (Rose court) welcome us warmly, give TW560 all the electricity it needs, parking space and very nice rooms for JC and myself.

Corte delle Rose, our place for the night.

Corte delle Rose, our place for the night.


 
Today was, yet again, a beautiful part of TDAF2016 – we’re looking forward to tomorrow, Milan, Bergamo (where JC’s mother originally came from), the source of the world-famous San Pellegrino water and some more passes!

TDAF2016 - Day 7 GPS track

TDAF2016 – Day 7 GPS track