The trip to Lindau was a long but relatively uncrowded one. Some nice roads adorn the countryside. The ride took longer than expected and by the time we got there it was already after lunch. Parking was at a premium but after a pass through we snagged the verly last motorcycle spot we could find. We then headed into the old town section and ate at an Italian cafe. Once done we went back to the bike and navigated to the lighthouse for the pictures below. In retrospect, it was a bit out of the way for the pictures, but that's what vacations are for. We headed north to take the ferry across to Konstanz and grabbed a hotel for the night; Buchner Hof. It wasn't cheap, had no a/c but did serve Breakfast and had decent parking. We had to hoof it to dinner. Using a hotel map, we schlepped into town for dinner & a beer. Unbeknownst to me, the Spot was non functional this trip. Even after the trip no satisfactory explanation has been offered why. The unit was activated first at Munich to to Schwangau (using the manual), then from there to Konstanz. This was the night of the Euro '08 match between Germany and Spain. On the way back from dinner (on lake Konstanz) we tried to navigate through old town. Bad idea. None of these "gasse" streets, about the size of alleys were on the map. None of the landmarks on the map were in sight. Considering the long day, we hoofed back to the dinner place which was also a hotel and got a very short taxi ride. Mental note: Jill works off the bike too. Unlike the Spot, Jill, our trusty Garmin Zumo 550 did work. The map doesn't list the tiny alleys in Konstanz, but you can't have everything now, can you?
Leaving Konstanz it was only a few KM to the border with Switzerland. That was uneventful, we were past it and in the country before we could blink. So much for the manned border w/ non EU countries. Once past the city, the ride opened up into some very nice countryside, much like you would see in Amish country in the USA. No horses & buggies, but farm land everywhere. When we put in for lunch we decided to try and find a vignette for their autobahn. 40 franks. You must have it or the fine is much higher. So far, I'd seen one police event, a few cars on the side of the road in Switzerland. No radar anywhere. None. Zero. Nada.
I got the vignette and we got some Franks (probably franc with a c, but close enough). I noticed that Swiss pedestrians like to tempt the laws of physics. To the last, the Swiss pedestrians all walked into the crosswalk with nary a single glance for traffic. 3 times were close and one actually walked out and around me while I was riding through the x-walk. I didn't stop for him, but instead swerved, and I might have mentioned something aloud. No matter, we were headed to Interlaken. We ended up waiting for a ferry at Gersau to cross the Vierwaldstattersee, to get to Interlaken. We ate lunch there waiting for the ferry, it was quite picturesque. As we got closer to Interlaken, we got to ride around on the north side of the Brienzersee, or the "lake to the right" of Interlaken. Those roads are very nice, and moto friendly. When we got there, we had no hotel so we decided to try our hand at finding one ourselves. That's when sky opened up. We had just parked, and locked the bike helmets. We walked to a few and they were several hundred / night. Whoa. Carol decided to try and call her sister. Having already spoken to AT&T twice, it actually worked. We found one, but it turned out not to have a room for 2 nights. Finally I remembered that my Aerostich was water resistant and recently Nixwaxed. I got my helmet and walked Interlaken in the pouring rain looking for a room. Probably 1.5 km altogether. When we met back up we had a line on one outside the busy part of town but close. Hotel Alpina. I didn't even have to suit up So we rode there and got a room. Moto friendly, no a/c, and we didn't really need it, affordable, nice room and they had an elevator. 2 days here in Interlaken, lots of American tourists.
This town was hugely expensive and if you want a beer, chances are it will be Rugenbrau - "your local brew". I thought it was kind of good really and 1/3 the cost of a salad. The brewery is on the way to Grindlewald.
Around the Lakes
Below are pictures of a rock formation on the road north of the Brienzersee. The pictures represent the best 'panorama' of photos I could take to give an idea of the scale of the formation set against the backdrop of the lake.