ambitious project yet resulted, far from it ! ...
years Veloroute the draft in France is in the minds of
some elected and enlightened cyclists.
2000 the magazine specialized technical construction and
public works "The Monitor" published an article
about the introduction of French first sections of this
project along Loire called "The Loire by bike."
" La Loire à Vélo"
information from the Regional Council concerned and
navigation services for the most part to the east, the
planned route across the national territory seemed
feasible even before all the works are made, but it ' was
far from the case.
new portions are regularly open, following extensive
studies and major investments, but the paths site, or
simply calm are not yet a majority.
Of the other
countries (Switzerland, Austria, Hungary) information are
available from tour operators and guides mostly on paper
maps, descriptions, various lists. The facilities and
services available are much more numerous than in France,
with formulas walking with assistance more or less
For more information you can consult the general of each
country on this site.
An informative experience
summer of 2000, I had the opportunity to test the route
between Besancon and Pornic (coastal town near Nantes).
The challenge was dared to link these two cities (1100
km) without much training in 3 weeks, with 3 young teens
aged 14, 15 and 18 years, in total autonomy (tent,
sleeping popotte, etc ... ). But joining the ocean bike,
pioneers, was exciting!
The trip has been done from East to West, therefore wind
in the nose, in the rain (!), Sometimes with temperatures
below 10 degrees in the morning, with some campsites
removed because of bad company, or the hungry belly
Because greenfield without shops!
Based on this
experience, not entirely pleasant (sic), it was
interesting, thanks to the Internet, to share this
adventure to avoid others, to encounter the same
make the most of the cities, sites and landscapes
along, it seems necessary to do that steps short
and well prepared about stewardship. Indeed, the
setbacks are common about the sleeping and shops
available. In addition, bags filled to be
autonomous are already heavy, it is not
reasonable to add too many provisions.
On average, about fifty km seems good gauge.
Indeed, the average speed was recorded, according
to the day, between 10 and 15 km / h by step
according to the topography, the state of the
road, wind, fatigue .... It should also not spend
more than 5 to 6 hours in the saddle. There are
also other things to do along the way.
Family for example, it was found that the food
supply and erection of the tent at night, took
about 2 hours! In the morning, take-off was not
until after an hour also ...
The trip to bicycle solo ", with hotel
accommodation and meals at the restaurant is
probably easier, but ...
seems important to make the journey from West to
East because of the prevailing wind. That is why
the steps that are mentioned on this site go in
this direction, even if it is feasible in the
even if the slope is generally a low point to
another, in some cases there are significant drop
intermediaries. With bikes loaded, the slightest
coast is tiring and descents little restorative.
Along the canal, for example, the passage of
storeys caused by repetitive crossing bridges,
are painful, because not productive. He is also
rising in each lock but to a lesser extent.
is still not consecutive, many portions are still
dangerous, uncertain and Unsignalized.
- Between Ocean and
Nantes, there are no small road really quiet
except those vineyards ! Hello coasts and detours.
the Loire between Nantes and Briare, the route is mainly on
anti-flood dikes called "lifted".
Originally reserved for cycles and service vehicles,
they have gradually been appropriated by the traffic.
In some cases they are thus paving roads in poor, but
calm. In other cases small departmental quiet routes
, but narrow and lined with berms, or walls about 80
cm that make them dangerous. In other cases, in the
absence of the highway to come forward and relieve
the traffic of these roads, national littered with
trucks and cars are no specific planning. Anxieties
Hello! Fortunately, there are portions which are
designed and reserved for cycles but they are not
very many and not very well signposted for access. In
2000 they sometimes ended miserably.
edges of channels
with tow paths are mainly used by fishermen,
personnel manager locks and local inhabitants. As a
result, a portion of the path can be attractive for
its appearance but stalled almost from the last lock
to serve and not coupled with a bridge. Make several
miles twist is always frustrating. This tends to
improve with signs that goes up gradually ...
portions of routes
make use of small roads sometimes perfect, sometimes
In any event, the portions are always better handled
on the outskirts of major cities where users are
numerous Sunday, or on areas easy to adjust.
However, there were also bicycle paths which focussed
on roads and roundabouts huge!
One might prefer, when travel great distances, more
rustic accommodations and continued that
"billiards" interrupted over long
distances. Sometimes a trace of land compact, well
mown near enough, then coated with a coarse fatigue.
it is important to be aware that we do not give a
bicycle loaded anywhere. The visits of monuments
and amplettes largely surface are risky unless
you have a volunteer to guard. It is sometimes
frustrating. Experiments are tempted around major
stations by SNCF to develop sets of instructions
on a bicycle. In these cells grouped in clusters
completely closes on the whole bike and luggage
possible. It is an excellent beginning.
weight of words, the shock photos" said a
newspaper! Be careful. The photos contained on
this site were mainly taken in May 2004 during an
ad hoc report, under a beautiful sun,
highlighting the corners and cool places like
castles of the Loire.
This appearance is misleading but the pictures in
the rain in the brambles, or next to a 38 tonnes
have not much interest either.
practical and technical recommendations, see the description
of each stage of this site, , and the page of recommendations.
can also obtain the Michel Bonduelle guide,
recently published by Ouest France, which
describes the route between Orleans and the
the party to the east of France, the site now
describes the trip to Switzerland, Germany and
Enjoy and see
you soon on the number 6 Veloroute ... Eurovéloroute