My goal is to provide tour members with an outstanding tour experience that feels like you’re on your own riding with friends. It just so happens that I’m one of your friends and have been there and done it ALL before, so there is no hassle, no stress and no guesswork. I keep the atmosphere informal and easy-going so that the tour just seems to flow naturally from one day to the next. I do that by using my 23+ years of Tour Guide experience and my life-long New England living to provide some big picture structure by way of securing motorcycles (if requested), taking the hassle out of finding high quaility, classic style, well located inns and hotels and providing guidance/opinion on the best roads to ride in the region that people have chosen to tour in. I ride all day every day and you are welcome to ride with me as long as you like. You are also welcome to go off on your own if you prefer and I will help throughout the tour with what ever you chose to do. I also work to keep the cost low, like you would if you were on your own.
I grew up in New England and spent my high school, college and young adult years skiing extensively on the many mountains throughout northern New England. I have also camped and vacationed here and have been fortunate to experience much of the goodness that is New England.
I first learned to ride a motorcycle in 1973 on the Greek island of Rhodes. It was a rental bike with a 5 speed, 50cc two-stroke that always fouled the plug. Rhodes was part of a 6 month European odyssey that started as a backpacking, hitch hiking trek. After Rhodes I rented other 50cc bikes on Crete and Corfu. At the start of month 4, based on a limited budget, I purchased a 50cc, 5-speed Spanish built Ducati in Granada Spain.
Back then there was no Internet and very limited telephone service. A phone call meant either going to the telephone company office and calling from there or having the hotel operator place the call and then waiting 20 – 30 minutes for the operator to make a connection to the public phone in the lobby of the hotel. Either way 5 minutes would cost thirty dollars or more. So I used to skip the telephone and write home to my folks. I would sign the letters “Moto-Charlie”. Hence, the inspiration for the name of my tour company.
After my 1973 trip to Europe I spent part of the the next ten years going to college to become a CPA, thinking that I could make good money during the tax season (i.e. winter), which would leave me time and funding to ride during the summer.
From 1974 to 1982 I learned to ride big-bore bikes, much of that riding in New England. I also went on numerous North American motorcycle journeys. One 3-month trip included coast to coast from Halifax to Vancouver, down the west coast, coast to coast from Acapulco to Cancun, and a lot of travel in between. Those same years saw 2 more coast-to-coast trips from New England to the west coast, 2 trips to the Rocky mountains and back, and 2 trips down south to Virginia, Tennessee, etc.
In 1983 I finally got to go back to Europe for 3 weeks on an organized motorcycle tour. I went back in 1985 for 5 more weeks and flew my motorcycle over for the trip. Between 1985 and 1998 I went to the Alps every year, except one, on a motorcycle, at least once and frequently twice per year on my own or with friends. These trips were usually in June and September, leaving me the Spring and Fall along with July and August to ride here in the States or Canada. I started Alps-Tours in 1999 and have gone every year since then at least 2 – 3 times per year. I’ve also gone through the Alps two more times by car with my wife but that’s another story.
My wife has accompanied me in a car while I ride a motorcycle. Some of my friends have also brought their wives and girlfriends, utilizing cars and motorcycles on the trips. That is why I know that motorcycle and car combos can work well together, both in the Alps and on New England tours.
Over the years I have owned an assortment of motorcycles including a Honda 350, 500, 750, Goldwing, a BMW 750 (a twin and a triple), an airhead RS, a Yamaha FJ1200, a Moto Guzzi CX-100, a 1993 Ducati 900SS with a 944 kit and numerous other performance modifications, a classic 1977 Moto Guzzi LeMans 1, a Honda Blackbird, a Honda ST1100 and my current 2-up Honda ST1300.
I am the owner of a consulting firm that provides business valuations and business brokerage to healthy and distressed businesses and also provides management services to financially troubled companies. I schedule my 6 Alps Tours to run in June and September (cooler, less crowed and less expensive) and run my New England Tours in July, August and the Fall (to enjoy the foliage).
My style is generally to ride a full day, rain or shine, at a brisk but safe pace. I err on the side of caution when it is raining but even then, the scenery and the roads can be very enjoyable, plus there is still the food, the coffee, the deserts, etc – oh là là.
I like to do the big passes and high mountain roads, with their height and grandeur but I am particularly fond of the smaller back roads here in New England and the little byways that snake along the ocean that you find marked as little red lines on the maps with aspect ratios of 1:250000. I love riding, whether it be in the Alps or in New England. Any day riding with friends is a great day.
If you want to know anything else about me please feel free to e-mail or telephone.