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Czech Trip 2022 - Day 2

Roads closed and coil disaster!

We were away from the hotel pretty early and the first stop was petrol. Vera was doing far more to the gallon than I had expected and so I wasn't really in need, but Giles on the 1982 Katana 1100 was.

I had planned a route that would take us back a little to the Rhine and then we would follow it to Rudesheim before hitting the faster route to Wiesbaden and then the A3 towards Wurzburg.

We accomplished the first part. The first petrol stop on TomTom was actually closed down. The pumps removed and it was a car dealers. We carried on until St Goarhausen where the station was open. We filled up there. We couldn't stop by the Loreley statue and so carried on. Then it all went to pot.

The road ahead to Rudesheim was barred and we had to strike off left away from the Rhine and into the hills. The road would be great to recreate the Isle of Man TT! Smooth tarmac and sweeping bends all through a thick forest. We didn't see any "umlietung" signs to take us back to the Rhine, and we ploughed on. Eventually stopping to reset the satnavs at a bikers café - Wisperstube.

From there the newly routed satnavs took us to where we would have been had we gone through Rudesheim.

It should have been plain sailing all the way to Rothenburg ob der Tauber. Wrong.

After Tauberbischofsheim where we stopped for fuel it all went wrong. Another road closure. This time the satnavs gave us the alternative of the motorway. We'd miss this end of the Romantic Road.

Instead fate interrupted with Giles' bike going onto two cylinders. After some checking it seemed a coil.had failed. Time for the AA.

When we were certain that the local breakdown service was coming Phil and I set off for Plzeň. We had lost about 2 hours waiting to get through to the AA. Giles wanted us to go as he knew we had about three hours to the hotel. The ADAC patrol was on its way.

We decided on the direct route and the Romantic Road could wait.

We arrived in Plzeň at the Hotel Plzeň about 9.15pm. They checked us in and we hurried over the the attached pizzeria. We had had no lunch and were hungry. The hotel is very modern. There were six German bikes already there. For €35 the room was spacious and comfortable.


Breakfast was a buffet and good.

Posted by InvictaMoto 12:06 Archived in Czech Republic Tagged czech_trip_2022 Comments (0)

Czech Trip 2022 - Day 1

View Czech Invader 2022 on InvictaMoto's travel map.

I was up at 5.15am to get washed and dressed to set off for the ferry port at Dover. 

Most of the packing had been done the night before.

The ferry to Dunkerque was scheduled for 8am and due to increased security since we left the EU we were told to be there 2 hours before sailing time.

I arrived at 6.20am. The queue such as it was consisted of three cars. My passport was stamped and I was on my way to DFDS to check-in in about 5 minutes.

We then had over an hour of standing about before boarding. When we went to the ferry there were less than a dozen cars in the queue.
The crossing was smooth and it was nearer 11.30am when we emerged onto French soil. 

The idea to cross Belgium without stopping and into the Eiffel mountains and a scenic ride to near Koblenz.

Sadly this all went to pot when French and Belgian roadworks added more and more time to the trip. 

In the end we had to abort the cross country section mainly due to over an hour inching around Brussels. The ring combined roadworks and road closures. A great combination.

In the end we arrived at the hotel. Checking in meant phoning for a code to open the locked key box by the door. When it was booked we chose one with a restaurant and a bar.

The day before arrival we had a message via booking.com to say that these were closed. But that there were others nearby. We eventually ate at Zum Engel although they didn't seem too pleased to have us.

They closed as soon as a party at another table left.  

We eventually got another beer at the campsite down by the river. If we had gone there first we could have eaten too. The people much friendlier.

Posted by InvictaMoto 11:53 Archived in Germany Tagged czech_trip_2022 Comments (0)

Czech Trip 2022 - They Think It's All Over - It Is Now!

And now the end is here, And so I face that final curtain, My friend I'll make it clear, I'll state my case, of which I'm certain, I've lived a life that's full, I travelled each and every highway, And more, much more, I did it, I did it my way,

And back home. Eight days on the road and 2212 miles under the wheels of the V-Strom.

When I get time I'll write up about the places we visited, the highs and lows, and of course add some photos taken on my phone. I did take the Sony pocket camera with me but hardly took any photo on it.

Somewhere in Germany!

Somewhere in Germany!

On the Romantic Road in Bavaria

On the Romantic Road in Bavaria

On the Romantic Road in Bavaria

On the Romantic Road in Bavaria

Just three from the Sony Cybershot!

And this is a rough map of where we went in the week. It includes all the places that the search engine can find so it's not exact!

Posted by InvictaMoto 10:04 Archived in Germany Tagged czech_trip_2022 Comments (0)

Czech Trip 2022 - Hotel Pilzeň

Stayed here last night. Right in the centre. Secure parking for €6 per car space. Easily fits up to 4 motorcycles. Really good rooms and excellent buffet breakfast. Thoroughly recommended.



(Blog entry sent from Yahoo Mail. The photo looks okay on my phone, not sideways as it appears here.)

Posted by InvictaMoto 07:01 Archived in Czech Republic Tagged czech_trip_2022 Comments (0)

Czech Invader Rally Trip - May 2022

Comfortable on the bike

The test of the Hommiesafe airseat wasn't the miracle I was searching for. Tweaking the air in it to get comfort wasn't too successful. It barely has any in it.

So after years of thinking about it I bought some lycra lout padded shorts. If they can help with cyclists arse pain, then maybe me too on Vera!


Fingers, no, buttocks crossed ..

Posted by InvictaMoto 10:45 Archived in England Tagged czech_trip_2022 Comments (0)

Awaycation France - AHC

All sorted!


After getting the vet to send the necessary paperwork to the online vets, and me sending them my half separately, it was a case of wait and see.... With these things you never know whether you have done it right or not. And then...


A message arrived from Abbeywell Vets asking for the payment.... That's done. I asked for the AHC to be valid from the 27th June and we travel on the 29th. So that's another thing out of the way before I head off to Czech next week. It's another £99 spent!

At least the rabies jab lasts three years and so if we decide to go away again the the EU next year we can get a new AHC for a much reduced price. Our own vets wanted £200 for the AHC! I was thinking about going much earlier next year and for longer! Get our monies worth!

Reggie couldn't care less!

Reggie couldn't care less!

Posted by InvictaMoto 00:22 Archived in England Comments (0)

Czech Invader Rally Trip - May 2022

Day 3 - The plan anyway!

Once we have enjoyed what Plzeň has to offer the Englishman Abroad we need to get across the country from west to east and the Rally site. I had a few things planned for the way across and in the end I dropped most of them apart from the Church of Bones in Kutná Hora and a side trip of around 5 miles to "bag" Poland.

In addition, I have planned a short stop to see my former student and friend Rosta Kříž in Hradec Králové. We should make good progress as the road from Plzeň as far as Hradec Králové, the D11, is mostly motorway. It's after that where we will be on ordinary roads.

To "bag" Poland on the trip I am hoping that the border between the two countries near Boboszów is not manned so that we can ride straight through and back out again unmolested. If not I guess we bluff it or turn around! On Google Maps Streetview it looks simple enough with just signs explaining the speed limits etc. The reality might be different! If you know better then comment away!

Once back into Czech we head along the roads to Vernířovice. I have another fuel stop planned before we get to the rally hotel. This is to ensure that should the club have a ride out on Saturday we have full tanks.

And that should be it. A nice relaxing evening catching up with things and hopefully Phil and Giles picking up the long distance awards!

Czech Trip Day Three

Czech Trip Day Three

Boboszow PL

Boboszow PL

Posted by InvictaMoto 18:56 Archived in Czech Republic Tagged poland czech_republic brno plzen popůvky vernířovice boboszów hradec_králové czech_trip_2022 Comments (0)

Czech Invader Rally Trip - May 2022

Day 2

The second day starts near the Rhein and ends in the Czech Republic in Plzeň. It's a fair old drag but once again a mixture of scenic and motorway to knock off the miles.

The start of the day sees us head back a little towards Koblenz and then along the Rhein on the northern bank to Rüdesheim am Rhein and towards Frankfurt, now on the A3. After about 90 miles of motorway we drop off and join the Romantic Road to Rothenburg ob der Tauber. After that it will be all motorway to the Czech border and to Plzeň.

I have planned in a stop at the motorrad parking in Rothenberg so the team can see the old buildings that form the medieval centre of the city. And maybe the Christmas shops!

The day looks to be about 350 miles but we should make good progress on the motorways! I have only once stopped in Plzeň for a quick lunch stop many years ago. Hopefully if we leave the hotel after breakfast around 9.30am we should be in Plzeň around 6pm. Plenty of time to enjoy a walk around and maybe a few of the local beers that the city is very famous for. It is where Pils comes from!

Czech Trip Day Two

Czech Trip Day Two

Posted by InvictaMoto 15:51 Archived in Germany Tagged czech_trip_2022 Comments (0)

New keys for Suki - Part 3

After the success of the new habitation keys for Suki, today we took her back to JC Leisure in Rye so that the "key man" can make a new ignition key. We asked fob style key that includes the remote locking for the doors as well as the ignition.

As I am away next week for the trip on the motorcycle to the Czech Republic I asked could we leave it there until I get back on June 1st. So the drive is free of Suki. it means I can get the garage open and pull the bike out without shuffling the car and Suki backwards and forwards!

At least that is one thing off my mind so I can concentrate on the Czech Trip.

Posted by InvictaMoto 15:30 Archived in England Comments (0)

Czech Invader Rally Trip - May 2022

Day 1

The first day is liable to be a long one! Mileage wise it is about 320 miles with about two-thirds of it on motorway/autobahn. One fly in the ointment is that to get from the coast to Germany means having to negotiate the Brussels ring-road. In my experience only getting through or past Antwerp is worse!

One off the A3 just inside Germany we play tag with the border before the first stop at the Bikers Ranch. Lunch. I hope. From then we are on a meandering route to try and get in as many "green" or "scenic" roads as shown on the Michelin Maps.

We have had an email from the hotel in Bad Ems to say that the reception in closed and we need to phone to get someone to open up for us. The restaurant/bar is closed but there are alternatives nearby. "On the Road" we always choose hotels with restaurants/bars either onsite or nearby to save riding the bikes and also so we can have a beer or two!!

Czech Trip Day One

Czech Trip Day One

So five days to go!

I suppose I had better start looking at what to take. With limited carrying capacity exacerbated by the problem with Europe is that you simply canty guarantee the weather, is what to wear on the bike!

Do I go full waterproof textiles? Or maybe Hood Kevlar jeans and lighter jacket with waterproof over gear?

Posted by InvictaMoto 11:28 Archived in England Tagged czech_trip_2022 Comments (0)


Since joining this site and the forum, it has been really useful.

Of course it will be Eurocentric but there's plenty of advice on the forum.



Posted by InvictaMoto 10:18 Archived in England Comments (0)

Awaycation France - All Paid Up!

As I am going to be away next week on the motorcycle trip to the rally in the Czech Republic, I thought I'd chase up the last booking from this trip.

The booking is for the last two nights of the trip at the Chateau de Drancourt near St Valery sur Somme. I had booked it through pitchup.com and was unable to see how I could pay the balance as pitchup said that it was to be paid on arrival.  However, the paperwork in the emails back from Drancourt said it has to be paid a month before going and online.  Except it didn't appear when I logged in. :(

I tried on the off chance I logged in today and it appeared in my account. So I paid it. :)

It's a bit earlier than necessary but it is out of the way and sorted.  I can go away next week and not have it in the back of my mind.

The AHC for Reggie should be sorted. I am a little nervous about that and hopefully I didn't miss anything when I read and re-read and re-read the vets instructions and also the government website. I am sure it is easier once you have done it once.

Now to concentrate on the Czech Rally trip and put this trip aside for a few weeks.

Posted by InvictaMoto 16:38 Archived in France Comments (0)

Awaycation France - AHC

Reggie gets his Rabies Jab

With the online application ready to send off, Reggie had his rabies jab this morning. The vets will have sent off the form for us directly to the online AHC vets. I had to send a separate firm to them. Hopefully they will be mated up together at their end

So far it's £82 invested in the rabies jab. Once they have the forms they will get back and want the £99 payment

I set the collection date as 27th June as that's two days before we set off for France. The AHC needs to be done up to ten days before departure.

Let's hope there are no cockups.

Online AHC.

Government Advice on AHC

Posted by InvictaMoto 14:36 Archived in England Comments (0)

New keys for Suki - Part 2

The right keys this time!

Hurrah! The right keys have arrived this time. I tried them immediately and they work as they should. Now just waiting for the the other set to wend their way back to the the sellers for a refund.

Maybe next time (if there is one) I need to take a little more time selecting the keys with the same numbers but from different batches and styles.


Posted by InvictaMoto 18:03 Archived in England Comments (0)

Czech Invader Rally Trip - May 2022

A week to go....

sunny 19 °C
View Czech Invader 2022 on InvictaMoto's travel map.

Just a week before we set off for the east of the Czech Republic for the local Suzuki Owners Club Rally. In fact, Phil and Giles will actually be setting off on Tuesday to come across from the west country to Dover. For me it's a 14 mile ride from door to door (as it were!).

As well as having everything printed I will have some of the details on my phone. In fact, I'll have multiple copies of all the stuff I need to have with me. One in the tank bag and others (!) in the top box. Belt and braces!

Today I copied the routes from MyRouteApp to the TomTom. At the same time I saw that there are map updates for Europe and the US. I don't usually bother with the US upgrades but whilst I am at it I might as well let it run.. 🤯

The updater came up to say that to do the download would take 10124 hours.... it changed before I could get a photo... to 1 hour 24 mins. Phew.

I also downloaded and installed the DFDS app to my phone and logged in. It shows the last check-in time to be 7.15am for the ferry we are booked on. I will aim for well before 7am arrival at the docks. Looks like a very early start. Just like going to work! The app also says that you can enter the API (Advance Passenger Information) using the app. I can't find that and so whilst I still have a laptop to hand I entered my passport details for the booking through the website! Is it worth an email to DFDS to ask about the app? Hardly worth it now.

Today it is a day for changing the bikes over in the garage and relegating the Suzi the Kettle to the back and getting Vera Strom to the front and giving her a check over. She is well within the service limits and the tyres are almost new. A bit of oil on the chain. I'll use the Scottoiler oil I have left over from when I had one fitted to the Kettle.

Oh and of course the UK sticker needs to be found a place! maybe on the back of the pannier? Which side? Decisions eh!

And finally. I have to fit and tune the new air seat cover to my butt's needs. The V-Strom is a really good motorcycle. It does everything you would expect from a 1000cc v-twin. The gearbox is slick and typically Suzuki in operating but... the seat is terrible. I have tried using the Alaska Leathers sheepskin pad that I have used before on the BMW and Triumphs (since 2004!) I have had in the past. But to no avail. After fifty miles it feels like my butt cheeks are numbed and then painful!

So I bought a Hommiesafe inflatable seat cover.

Hommiesafe Air Seat.jpg

It gets great write ups on the V-Strom forums. It needs only a little air in it to take the pressure off. I will fit it and see about a few test rides to fine tune it. Perhaps ride up to Arsenal for the last game of the season on Sunday rather than take the train. It's 75 miles each way?

That 1h 24m turned out to be nearer 3 hours in the end before it had downloaded the maps and the other little changes and then installed on the 410. Still, that's it for another three or four months.

Posted by InvictaMoto 11:15 Archived in Czech Republic Tagged czech_trip_2022 Comments (0)

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