magazine HOG 4 2017 .pdf



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Réunion

The intense
island:
H.O.G. RéUNION
ISLAND CHAPTER
Words: Maud Baussard, Chapter Secretary |
Photographs: Franck Vandennoortgate, Maud Baussard,
Pascal Pradel and Ulysse Hoarau
H.O.G. Editor: Angelique Dermit

HOG® 67

Réunion

TUCKED INTO THE INDIAN OCEAN, 900 KILOMETRES OFF THE
EASTERN COAST OF MADAGASCAR AND 200 KILOMETRES FROM
MAURITIUS, LIES RÉUNION ISLAND, ALSO KNOWN AS ‘L’ILE
INTENSE’, OR THE INTENSE ISLAND. ITS DIVERSE BLEND OF
CULTURES, RELIGIONS AND LANGUAGES – FRENCH, CREOLE AND
ENGLISH – HAS IN RECENT YEARS BEEN FURTHER ENRICHED BY THE
REGULAR REVERBERATIONS OF HARLEY-DAVIDSON® MOTORCYCLES.

SAINT-GILLES-LES-BAINS IS
HOME to the Harley Owners
Group® Réunion Island Chapter.
Established in January 2001, the
Chapter’s first official ride, on
February 5, 2001, attracted 30
members. Today that has grown
to around 170 members, drawn
from across the island’s 2,500
square kilometres, who have
photographed rides from all four
corners of the island, with an open
invitation to visit and share their
passion and pride in their home.

CHAPTER RIDES TAKE PLACE once a month,
with routes varied to include both little-known
roads and the chance to rediscover stunning
landmarks and attractions. Under the watchful
eye of safety officers, riders relish the
opportunity to clock up the kilometres crossing
ever-changing landscapes that include one of
the most active volcanoes in the world, the
Piton de la Fournaise, or Peak of the Furnace.
To reach the volcano, riders have to travel
across the lunar-like Plain of Sands.

Réunion

LOWER DOWN THE VOLCANO, riders may need to
brave a still smoking hot stretch of road, thanks to
regular lava flows across the area.

THE KEYWORDS FOR CHAPTER
MEETINGS ARE: “Conviviality, enjoyment
and sharing! All are gathered around one
and the same passion, their beautiful
machines of legend!” These machines are
here gathered around a statue of French
aviation pioneer Roland Garros in Saint
Denis, the island’s administrative centre,
where he was born in 1888.
WITH A CLIMATE THAT RANGES FROM HUMID TO
TROPICAL TO MEDITERRANEAN, and landscapes varying
from volcanic mountains to sandy beaches and deep blue
oceans, Réunion Island is endlessly fascinating. Climbing
to around 800 metres above sea level at St Leu rewards
Harley-Davidson riders with magnificent views.

OFTEN RIDES TAKE THE CHAPTER through vast
fields of sugar cane or their destination could be the
impressive Niagara waterfall, in the east of the island.
Another significant feature of Réunion Island is its
wide variety of forests, a valuable wildlife habitat.

HOG® 69

RÉUNION ISLAND’S
BREATHTAKING scenery and
beautiful beaches – like this one
at Saint Leu – make it hard to
decide on the best place to take
a break. On an island the size of
Réunion, you’re never far away
from the coast and a panoramic
view of the Indian Ocean.

FROM ST DENIS, the administrative centre of the island, in the north…

…THE ROAD TAKES THE CHAPTER SOUTH, towards Saint
Pierre, Réunion’s second largest urban area. The perfect end
to a ride is visiting a restaurant to enjoy Réunion’s spicy and
exotic cuisine, influenced by French and other national styles
of cooking.

70

HOG®

Réunion
DURING THE CARNIVAL PERIOD,
Chapter members are happy to
swap the traditional H.O.G. leather
look for more colourful outfits.

EVERY SECOND
SATURDAY of the month,
the H.O.G.® Réunion Island
Chapter teams up with
Harley-Davidson®
dealership Flying Twin for
a friendly get-together,
where a festive atmosphere
is spiced up with rock
bands and good music.
On karaoke days, several
members can show off
some impressive voices.
GETTING INVOLVED IN ISLAND
life is important for the Chapter
and a key event on its annual
agenda is to support good
causes. With the assistance of
the Chapter Director, Brightness
of the Island was a recent
beneficiary. Children in hospital
were entertained with visits from
clowns and the little ones had the
opportunity to enjoy short rides
on Harley-Davidson® motorcycles
– a treat designed to bring a
smile to their faces.

HOG® 71




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