In 2016, during the ‘End of Season’ Rally in Valkenburg we met some members of the Hogsback Chapter. We had a lot of fun together and a few months later Steve R. contacted our former Head Road Captain Richard H. of the Limburg Chapter Netherlands, to arrange a ride out for both chapters in August 2017.
A few members of the Limburg Chapter started to arrange this ride out, leading through scenic areas of The Netherlands, Germany and Eifel like the Eifel and Ardennes. Steve arranged the hotels for the group, and Richard’s team organized, besides the ride out, the lunch and a dinner in the evening.
On Friday evening a few members of the Limburg Chapter already went to Valkenburg to welcome the Hogsback Chapter and give a short briefing about the ride out, the different traffic rules in the (three!) countries and some historical information.
Despite some sprinkles of rain, two Road Captains (Driek and Richard) of the Limburg Chapter went to Valkenburg to guide the members of the Hogsback Chapter from Valkenburg to Harley Davidson Dealer Dutch Hills in Kerkrade. At the dealer about 30 members of the Limburg Chapter were waiting to join in. After the obligatory group photo, made by the dealer, we could start our engines: 9 English and 20 Dutch bikes.
The organisation of the ride out, did their utmost to make sure that the English guests would feel like home, so some rain was arranged. Even a lot of rain. Despite the weather we kept optimistic and called it stubborn ‘just a few sprinkles’…. But, after rain comes sunshine and that was the case by the end of the tour!
It was a beautiful ride-out, with one drop out (minor engine problems, so he went back home) and one Englishman, who wanted to stay on the Highway a bit longer and refused to take the right exit…… But our sweepers Jo B and Ronald B make themselves immortal by pulling him from the highway. At the Biker Ranch (a really beautiful log cabin in the Eifel) we had lunch and after that, we continued our ride out through the National Parc. Besides an extra petrol stop, there were two extra breaks: one at the oldest concrete dam (with an statue of an enormous Lion) and one at the “Cimetière Américain Henri-Chapelle“; one of the three graveyards of the Second World War with more than 8,000 white crosses of the killed American soldiers during the fights in December 1944/January 1945 at the Ardennes area.
After the ride out we took a few minutes to fresh up and in the evening there was a BBQ-dinner at the castle ruins of Valkenburg, overlooking the village. We started with a welcome bubble drink and after that the buffet was opened. More drinks followed. The glasses toasted and especially the nice conversations and lots of laughter made this a very nice end of the day (and beginning of the morning). The speech of Steve was great and we made the promise to keep in touch and meet again.