Category Archives: Alps

Every European biker wants to ride the Alps someday. Here some advice and an interactive map of the main passes for your planning.

Photo Moment

Riding into the Ambush

Someday, riding the greatest roads and sceneries, it would be great to have a photo taken from that very moment. With a bit of pre-organizing, setting up cameras etc this can be done. Also the new drones give great views of your ride. So go ahead, you will not regret it.

But all this pre-arranging is often just too much. And I do not have the pictures to prove it!


In few places and on certain days, a photographer may be lurking around the corner. When in luck, these are professional photographers with quality gear. All you need to do is to look up the fotos from the net.


At Stelvio Pass on the Alps in Northern Italy, I was lucky to ride into one such ambush. Photographers were ready on both sides of the pass. All I needed to do was to make note of the approximate time of my passing the photographer and later, to log on to their site ( in this case) and find my pictures – usually there are several to choose from. Here are a few samples for your enjoyment!


Map of the Alp Passes

Passi delle Alpi

A map for some 115 Alpine passes can be found by clicking the image below. The earlier interactive feature is unfortunately no longer working in the first image. Interactive feature in the image for the Swiss alps works fine.

Klausen Pass, Northern Switzerland is also for some reason missing from the map but can easily be found by just googling… A nice route to enter the Alps coming from Schwarzwald i.e. Black Forest in Germany.

Link to interactive app of the Swiss Alp Passes

Riding to the Alps via Schwarzwald

After crossing central Europe, Freudenstadt in Schwarzwald is a very nice town to stay overnight, exploring the area and/or before continuing to the alps. After staying there twice, I can recommend one comfortable, relatively small, family-run hotel in the town centre, Hotel Adler. With very few exceptions, I have usually never needed advance bookings when touring the alps but just dropped in when felt like it. Notable exceptions are Lugano and Montreaux during the Jazz festivals but still, even then, managed to find a good hotel. If you go to Klausen Pass from Black Forest, it is some 300km and you may want to stay overnight in one of the hotels on the higher plains. I can already hear the cow-bells… yes, there are plenty of cows in Klausen Pass… From Klausen pass you have easy access to Susten Pass (stop at Sustenbrüggli restaurant), Grimsel Pass, Furka Pass, Gotthard pass (remember to ride the old pass!!!) etc. Head to Andermatt, another really nice town to stay overnight in, with plenty of comfy hotels and even some lively pub-life. A definite plus for Andermatt is the fact that you can access Oberalp Pass (Oberalp Strasse) directly just behind the town! TOP TIP: At some point you may want to visit Passo Stelvio by the Swiss border in Italy: One top tip giving you flexibility for route planning is to know that even though it is listed as a gravel road (and partly it is gravel), Umbrail Pass from the north (Schwizerland) leading to Passo Stelvio (Italy) is firm and really easy to ride even on a heavy touring Harley. No need to avoid it. Done it three times and would not expect it to have changed for the worse. Riding in the Alps is fantastic and good fun. The scenery is breath taking and the roads are out of this world. Plenty of places to stay overnight. But while you are there, do not count calories…

Grossglockner Edelweissspitze, July 4th 2007. Wake up in Winter Wonderland! Remember to stay at the top – 2571m – at Edelweisshutte!