Chasing Storms

Today I was thinking about which pass has been my favourite on this trip. It’s actually a really hard question to answer as every pass has been different with its own unique characteristics.

They have ranged from the very tight and technical passes where you have little room for error, to the more open flowing passes where you can get into a rhythm. Then the changes in the countryside ranges from rugged barren mountain tops above the tree line to carving your way through forestry roads next to fast flowing rivers.

Today’s two passes were no different where we cut from St Moritz over the Juliet Pass and then retracing our steps to Splügen. But instead of heading back up the Splügen pass we went onto the San Bernardino Pass, before making our way to Ascona for our overnight stay.


St Moritz was a beautiful place with big grand hotels overlooking the gorgeous lake in the shadow of mountain range behind.

But it isn’t my sort of place … a brief wander around the shops and seeing the array of flash cars driving around says this is a ritzy place. And this carried over to the feel of the place.

Leaving the glitz in our mirrors we made our way to Julier Pass just minutes from town. This is a beautiful open flowing road which was great to just roll through first thing in the morning.

We linked Julier to San Bernardino via Splügen where we picked up some nice local cheese and bread for lunch.

The San Bernardino Pass was also really good and like Julier was much more open (with a few tight sections thrown in) but this time more rocky. By this stage we had our full rain gear on as our route had us turning straight into the rain.

And at the top of the pass is an old hotel that you can sit and have a drink.

By this time we had popped out the other side of the storm and now looking for a suitable area to sit and have lunch. The choices … sit by the river, or in the grounds of a medieval castle on a hill.

Yes the castle won. In fact this is only one of three castles in Bellinzona. For more information on the Bellinzona castles.

Looking at this castle there was one section that reminded me of one of the last scenes in Lord of the Rings where all the kingdoms bow to the hobbits.

Lunchtime view looking over the walls and onto the town below

Stone road in the castle

The other two castles in sight

bit like Lord of the Rings scene…?

Then it was back on with the wet weather gear as we headed back into the next storm cell. From here Ascona was only a short distance and by the time we had checked in the storm had passed.

Ascona is a lively city on the lake which is a popular holiday destination for many nationalities.

Some art installation around town

And in the distance is Italy

It’s hard to believe that tomorrow is our last day on the beemer. And the last day of riding in Switzerland.

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