Day 2 Complete

27 07 2010

Don’t know if this will work because the WiFi at this hotel in Menton is a bit useless!
We started the day at the hotel in Montelimar and our endgame was Menton, which is a couple of miles East of Monte Carlo. On the way our challenge was to photograph the numberplates of motorhomes from as many different countries as possible. And the place to do this was Gorge du Verdun. All I can say about the Gorge is Wow!

The drive there was the first real test the car has has. It was true countryside driving. At one stage we were doing hairpin after hairpin to get over a large hill. At one stage the temperature gauge started rising very quickly, but it never got into the red. Because the hill was so steep most of was done in second gear, so we often got a lovely waft of clutch burning. The way down the other side of the hill meant that our brakes squeak nicely.
It all bodes well for the Stelvio Pass!!

When we left the Gorge we set the Sat Nav for the Marina in Monaco so we could have a bit of a nosey there.
When we arrived the traffic was packed solid so there was no chance of parking up and having a wander around. You could literally see the money dripping off people as they walked they’re very expensive and very spoiled tiny dogs past our car!
The expressions on most people faces were “What the …is that”, but we got lots of smiles and nods of approval as well.
We tried to drive as much of the Grand Prix circuit as possible but one way streets and the heavy traffic didn’t allow us to do the whole thing. At least we saw the famous Casino and drove through the tunnel, albeit in the opposite direction to the F1 cars. We took video footage of our drive through Monte Carlo so once we get home and I learn how to upload it that will go on this blog too.

We shall be leaving Menton (which appears to basically shut at 10pm, even the hotel bar) and heading for Italy. After skirting around Milan we’ll head to Lake Como where hopefully we will be able to stop for a while. After that we will head for Bormio and then go up to the top of Stelvio to where our next hotel is.
This is going to really challenge the car. Stelvio has at least 60 hairpin bends and featured in Top Gear, so if we don’t lose the clutch on the way up then there is always the danger of losing our brakes on the way down on Thursday morning.

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