The initial plan was to ride a 16 day loop from the Netherlands via some highway, lots of B-roads and some TET tracks to the Alps, cross over via some paved passes to Salbertrand. From there to go south on the IT TET, and on the South FR TET. Then connect to the TET around Clermont Ferrand and then go north via a quick stop at a friend in the Morvan. Good news is that most of it went according to plan, except it was a little bit too ambitious of course 😉
I used my drz400 with Mosko reckless 80 luggage and K60 scout tires. Thebike was using oil so I replaced some parts of the top-end. I’m happy that during the ~4300 km the bike only used 650cc of oil. Not too bad for a 20 year old bike with a leaking shifter seal. I used Osmand exclusively for navigation, where I created some curvy routes with Kurviger. I used a new design of my handlebar buttons and really love the ease of use to control Osmand with your hands on the bars.
From the Netherlands to Italy
August 27-30, ~1.400km
The first connecting route was good cruising together with a friend that joined for a few days. We had fantastic weather and nice curvy roads in the Belgin Ardennes, along the Vosges until Vesoul. We split and I hopped on the TET at Salins les Bains until Chilly and had a very nice wild camp in the Jura. The Alpine passes on paved roads were awesome on the little drz. I feared it might be too low on power at altitude, but it was having none of that! We passed cormelet de Roselend, col de l’iseran and the mont Cenis.
August 31 – September 3, ~700km
Next stop was Salbertrand, the epicenter of offroad riding in Italy 😃. It was Wednesday so both the Sommeiler and Jafferau were ‘open’. I did both on the day and met quite a few fellow riders. There was even a French couple doing all of Jafferau/Pramand two-up.
The next few days I rode south to via del sale via the Susa, Varaita, Po, Maira and Stura valley. This was along the TET Italy track, section 1. It was really beautiful driving and the views were great. Most of the track was unpaved, the rest was on twisties. Unfortunately it was a bit foggy/rainy at times so the views were not as awesome as they could be.
I also met a group of French riders who were on the same route and we rode together on some of the more tricky sections, such as the colle del Gilba. The colle del Gardetta was a really awesome section with lots of cows and great views. The via del Sale was a very pretty gravel highway. When I was at the end of it, it started raining with lots of thunder, so I went down to the valley on the Italian side instead of following the track on the French side of the border. After a rainy night, I hopped on the section of TET Italy that warned of a big boulder near Pigna. Good news: the boulder has been cleared (not by me 😉).
September 4-7, ~750km
The South French TET that followed was really nice with 50/50 of forest tracks, canyons and twisties on the TET track of (then) section 4. I especially liked the col de Turini and the Gorge de Daluis. The section around Pointe des trois Communes was unexpectedly beautiful. Close to les Bourbons I had a wild camp spot far from the nearest town, and learned that deer can make a barking sound, which was quite ‘ interesting’ ;). After la Rochette du Buis I took the backroads to cross the section that was advised not to take due to the forest fires. It was a nice drive to camping les Arches (tip!) near Montelimar.
Unfortunately I had a bit of a problem with the stator on the drz. It turned out that the voltage coming from the RR was only 11.5-12.0 volt. The stator outputted 3x20v instead of 3x60v. So it was broken, but not enough to stop riding. I tried to find a stator near Aubenas, but unfortunately could not find one in a timely fashion. I decided to ride on without headlight and with a newly bought battery charger in the saddlebags.
France to the Netherlands
September 8-11, ~1.500km
The rest of the trip was heading north from Aubenas (F) to Delft (NL) on b-roads via the Morvan where I met up with a friend. I tried some of the TET there, but it had rained a lot and I just did not enjoyed the mud and water crossings as much as I did the rocky tracks of the last 2 weeks. After the Morvan I rode up north to Troyes and tried some of the new TET section from Troyes to Reims, but it was again too slippery to my taste, and a fallen tree marked the last of the TET I rode 😉
Routes & Tracks
The sections on the paved roads were mostly made with Kurviger. This app is awesome for finding curvy roads. The offroad tracks were from the Trans Euro Trail, specifically these sections:
- F04: From the border with Italy to Montelimar
- F13: Toul > Vy-Les-Lure
- F22: Vy-Les-Lure > Chilly
- I01: From the Jafferau and Sommeiler south to the border with Italy
You can download all recorded tracks here: tet fr it 2022 – recorded tracks by day.zip