|Welcome to the Vee-Twin Tour of France '06|
|VeeTToF '06 updated 7th July 2006|
|The route so far will
|Hotel Accomodation & Reference Numbers|
|Download map here|
|Cast and Kit
Myself - Andy - on a 2004 KTM 950 Adventure with loads of bits carrying the luggage and a tankbag
John on his 2004 SV1000 (not faired) with a tank bag
|25th June 2006
Left home at 06.50, arrived in Millbay at 07.05. Boarded almost immediately and managed to get a cabin on Deck 8. Had a coffee and croissant in the bar before having a quick nap. Ferry crossing dead smooth and we were on our way at 15.05 local time. Filled up with fuel at Shell Garage near Vannes as planned, 147 miles. Got to La Roche sur Yon at 20.00. John's bike seems to be overheating! Had a meal (chicken) in the Buffalo Grill about a 10 mins walk from the F1. I didn't have the extra profiterole pud but opted for the pear tarte and a cup of tar - sorry, coffee. Strolled back to the F1 and checked J's bike but water full and fan shorts out to come on! It's now 22.54 and we need to shower and go bye byes.
7961 odometer, 249 today.
26th June 2006
Reasonable nights sleep, woke at 06.30, got up at 07.00. Left hotel at 08.30 and got caught up in the rush hour! Filled up just outside La Rochelle (near B&B) and then stopped to put our wet weather gear on. Stopped in Langon at the Le Clerc for food (sandwiches) and fuel. John's bike seems to get 2 mpg more than mine poss because I'm carrying the luggage! Had to stop just south of Langon to take sweat gear off! We're both getting about 54 - 56 mpg. Obviously too many cameras! Arrived at Pau F1 at 17.30 and got a room on the 3rd floor but it's in the bit out the front so it should be quiet tonight. Walked 2 miles to the McD's for T! Knackered now so we're sat outside in the rain with the occasional clap of thunder!!!
Odometer 8255 294 miles today 542.6 from home.
27th June 2006
Had a chat with the Dutch motorcyclists and got on our way at 09.33. Hot, humid and overcast, left without donning our wet gear tho! Stopped in Laruns for fuel and a 2nd breakfast, then onwards and upwards over the Col de Portalet where about 2 miles from the summit it absolutely hammered down. We carried on knowing that it would be dry on the Spanish side, which it was! We went from about 10degs to 30 in approx 10 miles! Had lunch in Ainsa, lamb cutlets with olive oil soaked chips but I had Almond ice cream for pud. Stopped a couple of times including turning off the main road for a little village to get some shade. An old lady had a chat but didn't seem to understand we didn't speak Spanish/Catalan/Basque! Arrived at the Formule1 in Torrevera to find it is air conditioned! RESULT. Car park is very open but we've washed the bikes and parked them under the window and we're on the ground floor. Supper was in the Rotunda a restaurant on the roundabout outside the hotel. The menu del dia was very good value but John doesn't like Parma Ham. Rather a lot of food for only 24. Whilst we were in there it came over all cloudy and we were treated to a fine lightening storm. It started to rain for about 10 mins and we're sat outside the hotel where it is still a warm evening and the storm is passing.
Odometer 8446 191 miles today 733.6 from home.
28th June 2006
Left the hotel at 08.10 and got cheap fuel next door - 1.05 per litre. Left garage at 08.33 and rode a fairly flat n dull route to Montblanc., then Tarragona. Saw the amphitheatre and then on to a stop at Sitges. Arrived in Barcelona at 1pm and settled in to room 323 of the Hotel Gaudi (brilliant in everyway). Went for a walk up the Rambla, lunch at McD's, and on to Place Catalunya where we visited the Informacion. Decided to do the Fat Tyre Bike Tour at 4.30pm and walked back to the Rambla via the Gothic City. Visited the Easycybercafe and sent an e-mail to Brenda. Arrived in time for the tour and set off with Max - our guide - to see Barcelona. Visited two parks, the Palace, the Sagrada Familia, and the beach where we were coerced to have a drink and poss food. Got back to the finish at 9 and came back to the hotel to ring home. Then we went out to get supper in the "Subway" which was delicious, it's where the Easy Café is. Then a walk to the waterfront where I bought some irritating "Rattlesnake Eggs". Back to the hotel at 11.45.
Odometer 8578 Mileage today 132 from home 865.6
29th June 2006
Wow, what a day! Started with the extra sugar breakfast followed by the washing of the smalls and hanging them up everywhere to dry! Out of the hotel at about 10am and up Las Ramblas to Placa del Catalunya where we got Tourist Bus tickets. Took bus to Parc Guell and walked 350 mts uphill to the Parc which is pretty fantastic - more Antoni Gaudi! Then on to swap buses to go to the hotel as the blue route runs past the bottom of the Ramblas. Used the hotel internet for 1 euro after a debacle with the Easycybercafe computer. Had a half sub in there at the same time. Went back out to go up El Mirador del Columbus and then back on the blue route bus to go to the Poble Espanya. Had a good look round there but wanted to see the Magic fountain at 8pm which was a bit special. Caught the bus back to the column and realised I'd dropped my cap! Bought Brenda 3 fans and a set of castenets from a lovely "good" shop. Back to drop bits at the hotel and back out for the full sub for dinner and a walk on the Ramblas etc. I got a chocolate crepe on the waterfront as we went back to take photos of the Mare Magnum/Port Vell. Back up the Ramblas for a last time and back in the hotel at about 12pm. John caught one of the lampshades and split it. No miles on the bikes today. bed at 01.30!
30th June 2006
Paid up at the hotel - didn't get charged for the lampshade but got stuffed tax! Then had to pay 40 for the garage! left by way of the south bypass but soon cocked up and ended up going back in to get back out! Still, found Tibidabo and then on to Sant Cugat del Valles for fuel. Gave up trying to get to Andorra the cross country way as the temperature was very high and we were both sweating a lot so we hit the motorway. Not a bad run to the tunnel (7 for 5 kilometers) but weird riding at 60+mph through a 3 mile long, single carriageway tunnel that goes up and down! Then skirting Andora to the south we entered it from Spain and had a McD's in Andorra La Vella. On and up to Puy Morens at 7926ft and cold with it. Then dropping down to Pas de la Casa where the Douane has moved 'cos of the new tunnel that misses PdlC out! Must hit their sales! Didn't bother stopping and we were joined by an UK rider on a Honda Hornet who, when I waved him past he made a complete horlicks of trying to pass an X type Jag! Luckily we turned off in Aix les Thermes to go over the Col Chioula - big grasshoppers - and a pleasant run to Carcassonne. Went out straight away for a BG but they don't do the big profiterole any more! Ya boo sucks to them then! Rode to La Cite and rang Brenda (wife) n Richard (son) and then back to the hot F1.
Odometer 8858 today 280 from home 1145.5
1st July 2006
Had to have a shower when I got up due to excess heat! Had brekkie and left at about 08.30. Went to Mazamet and filled up, then took back roads to join the Autoroute that crosses the Millau Viaduct. We turned off the autoroute to the pic-nic area to view the bridge but as it's new there is no shade so it was doubly hot. Carried on to the next exit where we went down to Millau and had lunch in a roadside cafe - I had a mozerella n ham pannini. Leaving we took the road that went to the Viaduc info place where we stopped to take photos etc. Carried on to Rodez on reasonable roads stopping at Pont de Salars for a respite. When we parked under a roof where there was going to be a market so we got told off - we still stayed there for 10 mins tho! Arrived at the hotel at about 5pm after filling with fuel at the new Geant supermarket 250 yds away. Whilst John watched England get beaten at penalty taking I walked around to see what we could get to eat. McD's won although there were quite a few places including the Hotel Balladin's own restaurant. Washed the accumulated bug dead off the bikes tonight so we could have a clean start tomorrow morning.
Odometer 9049 today 191 from home 1336.6
2nd July 2006
Had breakfast - which seemed to include yesterdays bread - and left at 9am. Rode straight to Laguiole - if straight can be used in a contrary and peverse way to describe the beautiful roads of the Masif Central/Cantal/Auvergne region. Bought Kt (daughter) a knife which has her name engraved on the blade and it's one of the more expensive ones as it has "point of horn" handles and double protection - anyone want to make smart remarks about Kt having sharp instruments better not make them to her! Carried on to the Viaduc de Garabit via the southern lake road which was a bit bumpy for John on his SV1000. Went south on the N9 so John could see the bridge better and then turned around and stopped on the bridge below to get a photo. Carried on to Allanche where we stopped for John to have a fag break outside the old station next to the Camping Car Aire de Service. Left Allanche and rode up the Pas de Peyrol/Puy Mary. There were 21 parapeints flying around the summit and we had a cantal cheese sandwich for lunch and I had Myrtylles Tart for afters. Descended to Salers much more easily and quickly than we did last year in the motorcaravan! Got fuel i Mauriac at 1.42 a litre (Total) and set off for the Gorge de Dordogne where we stopped for a break before going to Manzagol to see the viewpoint. Then the long drag to Limoges but at least it was on fast main roads. We stopped off at the BG south of Limoges and I had the Salad Exotique without the oeuf. I need to know what Coeurs de Palmier is? I ate it but not sure if I liked it! I had the profiteroles afterwards and they were the best one's so far. Got to the F1 hotel which is not climatisee but isn't too bad. Had a shower and I'm sitting outside sweating buckets again.
Odometer 9307 today 258 from home 1595
3rd July 2006
Thunderstorm before we left so we waited for it to clear before setting off. Left at 10am and it was quite pleasant until it got hot again. A Straight run back to St Nazaire and a nice Prem Classe hotel with a Buff Grill 200mts away. Rang home at 10.30ish and saw the laser lights from McD's roof shining on the electric pylon, Very pretty, Off early in the morning as we've got a 3+ hour ride back to Roscoff. Breakfast at 06.30!
Odometer 9542 today 235 from home 1830
4th July 2006
Left hotel at 07.15, and went off the dual-carriageway to go via Pontivy and then join the dual-carriageway at Guingamp. Got fuel in Pontivy. Arrived at Roscoff at 10.45am and were ushered onto the boat first. Got cabin 9 instead of 7 which we had on the way out. Getting off was a hassle as the motorcaravans were hemming us in and the first one had to wait for all the lorries to exit before the passenger - who was in a wheelchair - could be brought back to the van! 30 mins stood waiting! Odometer 9717 today at Roscff 175 from home 2004.3 Garmin miles for the journey = 1920.7 - so is the bike right or the Garmin! My money's on the Garmin.
If you insist on taking all your mate's luggage as well as your own on a KTM 950 Adv then don't be surprised when the bike weighs a ton when stood still but doesn't notice the weight when being hooned about through the mountains. Your fuel consumption will suffer - I averaged 51mpg and John got 56mpg. I still had to wait for him in each village on the smaller roads as he reckoned they were too bumpy for his bike suspension. I never noticed!