If you want to drive a vehicle in Austria and it weighs more than 3.5 tons (including all lorries, buses and heavy camper vans). A mileage-based toll applies on Austria’s motorways and expressways and you need a Go Box. The box costs €5 to buy and it must be loaded with a £75.00 minimum pre-payment. owch.
Electing to enter Austria without a Go Box meant avoiding the motorways and sticking to the minor roads, unless we wanted to risk a rumoured €2,000 fine. Following this plan the initial part of the route was a 600m decent down through Möserer. Judging by the smell of the Carthago’s brakes, if they could talk they would have shouting ENOUGH already!
This image doesn’t look as steep as it was but the descent was about 600 metres in about 6kms.
Care had to be taken after going through Landeck town to avoid the motorway tunnel and take the by-pass. Safely avoided we negotiated our way over the Resia /Reschen pass and into Italy.
Having spent the morning before we left walking the Leutasch Gorge and then with the 3 hour non motorway drive we ended up arriving about 4:30 at the parking lot on the other side of the lake from Reschen am See, just as the sun was going down behind the hills giving them a pinkish tinge.
Charlie looked a bit lonely on the huge, free, ski lift car park, which was empty waiting for more snow to entice the skiers before the lift opened in a few days time.
The lone Romanesque bell tower was part of an old church from the 14th century, which was drowned along with the rest of the town’s buildings when the water flooded in and is the only remainder of the old town of Graun and former life in the valley.
There are many stories and legends about the flooding event, and the lonely bell tower is often the main subject of them. One oral story of the locals about Lake Reschen is quite scary. It tells that the church bells sometimes still ring in the deepest and coldest hours of the winter nights. And the fact is that they were removed 60 years ago, a few days before the waters came and drowned the church and the lower half of the tower.
Heading down from the mountain ridge into the valley below we set our sights on a Carthago dealer near Merano.
The water tanks on the Carthago are accessible from inside the van. The white tank is for the fresh water the black is the grey water from the sinks and shower.
Normally you should be able to open the grey water tank (lever above red cap), but it’s become disconnected from the valve in the tank! With this jammed open we now run the risk of a frozen pipe if we rely on the tap at the end of the discharge pipe. (oh no, we’ve not got to get the hair dryer out again!).
So after some research we found the nearest Carthago dealer not far from Merano and booked Charlie in for 2 days later on Monday morning to get his water works fixed.
With the weekend to wait for the waste water tank to be fixed we settled in Merano’s very busy motorhome parking place and because it was the weekend, it seemed half the motorhomers in Italy had come to see the Christmas market.
Apparently the Penguins quite enjoy being steered round by the ears!
How could we pass by a stall selling Bombardino’s – Just has to be done
The next day the garage had Charlie fixed (common fault) in half an hour for €25 and once more we were free to head of to Brixen and up into the mountains.
We are still learning about e-bikes, I like to use mine in the TURBO setting to zoom up the hills and go as fast as I can. Lesley is more frugal (I can’t possibly comment why), as a consequence I use more battery.
Being a kind and generous wee soul Lesley offered to swap batteries for a quick 6 miler up the hill behind Merano, meaning she’d would have to make what was left in mine last!. A slight navigational error on my part meant the route grew to 10 miles. No problem for me with Lesley’s battery on board. But…… well my battery did last 6 miles. Oh dear!
When traveling in the van and taking photos it is inevitable you are going to capture a fair bit of Armco or crash barriers in your images. So I think we should celebrate the much overlooked and over photographed essential piece of infrastructure.- Here we’re taking the toll free route via the tunnel whilst the A22 Autostrade towers above us.
That’s it for now we managed to get through Austria without a Go Box and I survived giving Lesley my No Go battery, just!
Toodle Pip, Dave & Lesley
I thought it time to apologise for the many typo’s you have to endure when reading this blog, but to point out it could be worse!
Gust becos I cud not spel It did not mean I was daft. When the boys in school red my riting. Some of them laffed. But now I am the dictator. They have to rite like me. Utherwise they cannot pas Ther GCSE.
Some of the girls were ok. But those who laffed a lot. Have al been rownded up. And hav recintly bean shot. The teecher who corrected my speling. As not been shot at al. But four the last fifteen howers. As bean standing up against a wal.
He has to stand ther until he can spel. Figgymisgrugifooniyn the rite way I think he will stand ther forever. I just inventid it today.
Dave & Lesley
We have nearly new Motorhome for our next adventure a Carthago C-Tourer I149. We love our first Charlie but we expect the Charlie II to keep us warmer in the winter.