French Tracks

The black art of moving from A to B on foreign soil
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hobbitbiker
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French Tracks

Post by hobbitbiker » Wed Feb 05, 2020 1:38 pm

Hi all, firstly apologies if this topic has been done to death, new to the forum.

I am planning a two week solo trip around the french alps and I am trying to get to the bottom of the legality of riding the tracks that lead up into the mountains.

I have found a considerable number of tracks using google maps but I keep reading conflicting information on the legality of ring up these tracks

44°04'03.5"N 6°30'35.0"E
https://goo.gl/maps/RHac6sGvNyyzmBiHA

Is an example of a location I would like to get to, there seem to be many others, but I can’t work out the rule, I have even joined codever and translated the entire handbook and am none the wiser, so appealing to any french riders that actually know the truth and not hearsay.

There are statements about serious penalties for using the fire tracks reserved only for the emergency services, others say no one cares.

Any constructive advice would be super,

Hobbit



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daveuprite
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Re: French Tracks

Post by daveuprite » Wed Feb 05, 2020 2:10 pm

Can't see any reason why you shouldn't be allowed up that. Unless it's signed as excluded for military or something else. It looks like a chemin or even a driveable track. Chemins in France can be assumed to be open to you unless signposted otherwise for a specific reason (protected as e.g. a fauna park).

Take a look on Carte IGN Geoportail for a bit more detail (keep zooming in). It's basically the french government mapping service (bit like Ordnance Survey in UK):

https://www.geoportail.gouv.fr/donnees/carte-ign

If you click on the right hand icon square it will bring up a guide to the legends - which is how all the solid black lines and demarked lanes are designated. I just zoomed in on your particular location at Mount Cordeuil and the IGN map shows just open chemins - no problem.

On our many rides on chemins and farm trails we rarely see a soul, and just occasionally we have to open and then close behind us a make-shift sheep gate or whatever. It's much less restrictive than the UK.

If you do go down a track and get approached and told that it's 'privé', just smile a lot, say 'Désolé je suis perdu' and go back the way you came. You won't get into trouble. Just act the dumb tourist. But it's very rare indeed. We go out as a group of 3-6 bikers every 3 or 4 weeks and I think we had someone shout at us maybe twice in the last 3 years (and one of those was a brit!) - and we go pretty much anywhere we want - right through the middle of forests, down the course of streams, up escarpments, single track goat trails - everywhere.

Have a great time. That area around Castellane / Verdun etc is stunning. And you get to ply on Route Napoleon too...

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hobbitbiker
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Re: French Tracks

Post by hobbitbiker » Wed Feb 05, 2020 3:19 pm

Thanks for the feedback, that’s very useful

Can’t wait


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Re: French Tracks

Post by qcnr » Wed Feb 05, 2020 3:23 pm

Look up the TET website, they have track routes you can follow and are legal.
But sometimes the fun is finding your own way :-)

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HoboBeemer
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Re: French Tracks

Post by HoboBeemer » Fri Feb 07, 2020 6:57 am

In the mid-late 2000s the magazine publication https://www.tourenfahrer.de/ did a compilation with Touratech and they produced a number of GPX based tours, one of these tours was the Western Alps Enduro (Or words to that affect) it showed about 6 or 7 long distance trail routes in and around the Western alps (From memory).

I purchased said DVD but was clueless back then on how to get the thing to work, I later found out I needed the Touratech mapping software to download the maps which was unrealistic and unjustifiable at the time.

Anyway about 5 years ago I found the DVD again and managed to download all the GPX route files using any number of online tools, I think I used "Bike hike" with the best results and whilst they needed a bit of a tweak as some tracks were shown slightly off route it would give you a great starting point to find unpaved roads in the region.

It may be worth trying to locate one of these route DVD's, I would love to say I have mine on the shelf in the garage but honestly I have no idea where it is now.

EDIT:: Just looked on their website, they still have the "easyroutes" section link working, whilst it is in German (I do not speak German) maybe worth shooting off a email to them to see if they can help??.

https://www.easyroutes.de/

They were the company that produced the routes for Touren Fahrer, my guess and hope is that with GPX routes being far more popular these days they have a simple functional solution that does not require NASA levels of data input.

Regards



EDITX2:: Ok done a bit more digging I believe this is the item I had but it looks like it has a option for direct download now, I cannot say it will be what you want but certainly may help?. I would certainly ask relevant questions to them ref what device you have before going any further as it stills seems to indicate you need the TTQV software for it to work?.

https://www.motorradfahrer-shop.de/gps- ... talpen-zip
Last edited by HoboBeemer on Fri Feb 07, 2020 1:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.

daveuprite
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Re: French Tracks

Post by daveuprite » Fri Feb 07, 2020 12:54 pm

You might want to read this, Hobbit.....

https://www.adventurebikerider.com/the- ... 3e68310bb1

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