Our European migrations every year does involve a shit load of work, mostly at races & other events, with loads of driving, late night editing, lots of internet cafe time, laundry sessions, packing & re-packing, washing & sorting bikes & gear, getting the trusty (rusty) old van fixed and so on, but we do try to do something fun in-between the long drives from one country to the next and from event to event. These little side trips are usually the one’s that we end up enjoying the most and that we end up sharing with our good friends. None of us really have much time at the races & events to actually catch up properly and hang out, everyone is so busy with their own thing, but when we do these little mini trips in-between, that is when we actually get to spend some quality time with our mates on the road & we get to play and ride bikes.

The sign says it all.

The sign says it all.

Pretty patterns.

Pretty patterns.

I am intrigued by all the shrines you come across on the rides in Europe.

I am intrigued by all the shrines you come across on the rides in Europe.

Italian colours.

Italian colours.

Tracks & trails.

Tracks & trails.

I got to explore the Valley of the Sun in Italy while the DH World Cup action was going on a few weeks ago (pics above).

We got to go to one of our favourite places to ride, swim, eat way too much gelato & drink loads of red wine & lemoncello – Lake Garda in Italy. We had a big old crew this year which is always fun to do one of our all time favourite rides from Malcesine back to the lake. We also got to catch up with our good friends from California, Megan & Andy that just happened to be in Italy for work at the same time. Perfect!

High above Lake Garda, heading to the lake for lunch & a swim.

High above Lake Garda, heading to the lake for lunch & a swim.

Exchanging bikes for scooters for some lake cruising with Rach.

Exchanging bikes for scooters for some lake cruising with Rach.

Soaking up the sunshine.

Soaking up the sunshine.

Calm before the storm in Santa Barbara, exploring secret tracks with Victor & Sven.

Calm before the storm in Santa Barbara, exploring secret tracks with Victor & Sven.

Beautiful Torbole, Lago di Garda, Italy.

Beautiful Torbole, Lago di Garda, Italy.

Sven & Andy lounging in the  lake.

Sven & Andy lounging in the lake.

Megan & I catching up on the last two years of life.

Megan & I catching up on the last two years of life.

A big shuttling day from Col De Champs before the Val D Allos enduro race was pretty epic.

Another big shuttling day after the Val D Allos race was another pretty amazing day of riding before heading out of this beautiful valley.

Col D Allos for some apres race fun riding with friends.

Col D Allos for some apres race fun riding with friends.

Exploring the Val D Allos valleys & chapels.

Exploring the Val D Allos valleys & chapels.

After Val D Allos we made our way to the hidden gem of Moustiers St Marie tucked away in the Gorges Du Verdon for some swimming & kayaking adventures with Jon C & Christine and Tracy & James.

Our vanie, loaded up to the max, heading to the next destination (not all our shit though).

Our vanie, loaded up to the max, heading to the next destination (not all our shit though).

Moustiers St Marie, France

Moustiers St Marie, France

More shrines & holy stuff.

More shrines & holy stuff.

Plotting our next adventure with JC & Christine over croissants & coffee.

Plotting our next adventure with JC & Christine over croissants & coffee.

Cool restaurants.

Cool restaurants.

Loving the food in France  - is it possible to overdose on chèvre?

Loving the food in France – is it possible to overdose on chèvre?

Lavender fields - we must be in Provence.

Lavender fields – we must be in Provence.

Moustiers St Marie.

Moustiers St Marie.

Typical villiage signs.

Typical villiage signs.

The good life is a simple life.

The good life is a simple life.

In awe of the scenery we stumble upon. Checking out the gorges with JC & Christine.

In awe of the scenery we stumble upon. Checking out the gorges with JC & Christine.

It's summertime. Swimming, kayaking, beers & good times with JC, Christine, T-Mo, James & Sven.

It’s summertime. Swimming, kayaking, beers & good times with JC, Christine, T-Mo, James & Sven.

Stunning turquoise waters of the Gorges Du Verdon - France's best kept secret.

Stunning turquoise waters of the Gorges Du Verdon – France’s best kept secret.

Peaceful places. I love you Tar xx

Peaceful places. I love you Tar xx

There are a few (lots) places that I’ve always wanted to go to, that we just never end up getting to, so hopefully we’ll be able to go on a few more mini trips this summer and experience some new countries, places, trails & cultures. Isn’t that the whole reason we got into riding bikes in the first place?

Happy girl.

Happy girl.

Anyhow, I’ll keep you updated here on our mini adventures in-between all the important stuff.

peace out, Anka xxx

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