Planning and riding the Spain TET

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Simon_100
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Planning and riding the Spain TET

Post by Simon_100 » Sun Dec 16, 2018 4:15 pm

The Spanish TET is divided into numbered sections according to the Autonomous Regions through which the TET is routed. Each section name includes its order number, the name of the region and the date that the section was put on-line* e.g. SPAIN-Section 6-Castilleleon-20181215. It is important to know which region you are riding in as local rules and regulations may apply.

The Spanish TET is organized into three long-distance Routes and several Special Sections. The long-distance routes are:

The Great Northern Route (sections 1 – 7) which starts from the eastern end of the Pyrenees in Catalonia and runs across the northern regions of the Peninsula, including Andorra (Section 2), before exiting into Portugal from Galicia,

Andalusia (section 8a and 8b) which starts with the exit from the Portugal TET after crossing the river Guadiana near the Gulf of Cadiz and ends at the frontier with the Murcia region after passing Cabo de Tarifa, the southernmost point of mainland Spain.

The Great Eastern Route (sections 9 – 15) runs up the mountain ranges inland of the Mediterranean coast and leaves Spain via the Val d’Aran, an anomalous area in Spain as it is on the northern watershed of the Pyrenees – everywhere else the frontier runs along the summit ridges.

The GNR crosses the GER at near a remote hamlet called Els Prats in the so-called Pre-Pyrenees near Tremp in Catalonia – a selfie at the road sign is obligatory for native English speaking riders!

In addition to the ‘mainline’ there are several – and constantly more! – ‘Special’ sections. These are mainly in areas of outstanding natural beauty or special interest that deserve a detour as they are either difficult to incorporate into a continuous, ‘linear’, itinerary and are environmentally sensitive so that although they are ‘open’ to everyone if riders aren’t especially interested – and many will have seen these before – it helps to pass them by.

Other special sections are more functional, i.e. the Pyrenees Winter Route (Special Section ‘C’) bypasses the higher mountain sections at lower altitudes where the snow doesn’t normally settle for more than a few days, making a viable alternative to parts of sections 1, 2 and 3 – as long as it isn’t snowing!
Note that the Special Sections are named alphabetically and are in no order regarding their locations or types, i.e. they just get named as and when they are devised.

The Spanish TET also has various categories of waypoints: hazards, board and lodging, recommended mechanics and services on or close to the routes, advisory notices, e.g. where Section 15 is closed in winter (bears hibernating!) and conventional POI’s.

In compliance with the TET’s design, ‘ethos’ that states that it is suitable for smaller bikes carrying lightweight luggage (FAQ’s #8) hazards are only included if several experienced riders of these types of bikes have reported difficulty on the trail sections. Hence riders who doubt their own, or their bike’s, abilities should not assume that just because there is no hazard listed on the .gpx file that means that the trails there are ‘easy’.

There is no shortage of board and lodging in Spain, likewise campsites (NB most open only from Easter to End of September) so the listing for these are for places of outstanding interest, e.g. location, or service to bikers – NB all Spanish accommodation is Biker friendly’!

Mechanics and services are also personal recommendations based on actual experience. Communities in rural Spain is highly reliant upon skilled mechanics who can ‘fix’ anything and improvise, plus there is a very efficient parts delivery service for special parts – unless the part for your exotic bike isn’t in stock in Spain …

Advisory Notices mean just that, see the details about restriction signs and notices that you might encounter so that you don’t mistake a ‘no hunting’ sign for a ‘no motors’ sign – a common misconception – and I can clarify any ambiguous signs for future rider’s use if I know about them. So, if you do encounter a restriction please report it in detail to the Linesman, including a close up photo of the sign or gate, etc. a ‘location’ photo from a short distance away, accurate co-ords of the location and any notes that you may feel are important, e.g. the presence of hunters close by. Also if you work out, or are shown – see below – an alternative route, please submit that too.

The scene in Spain is constantly changing with new restrictions being placed on trails - and challenged by Spanish NGO’s and special interest groups opening them again! – take special care if you see anyone near an unexpected restriction sign, both to be aware of local sensitivity as well as trying to find out more about what is going on – most people will be wanting to help, including police and forest rangers, etc. – even sign language will do!

More updates on future posts ...

* Format YYYMMDD – it is essential to use the current TET versión, older versions are not supported in any way – not even archived – so any questions or clarifications o out of date versions will just make more unnecessary work for the Linesman!
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Re: Planning and riding the Spain TET

Post by Didado » Mon Dec 17, 2018 7:59 am

Thanks for all the work again. I have a minor request for future versions of the Spanish TET. Please put a zero before the single digit section numbers so that on the PC or in Basecamp the sections are listed in order in stead of Spain-Section-1, Spain-Section-10 etc.

In other words Spain-Section-01, Spain-Section-02 etc. I know it is almost irritatingly minor considering all the great work you put into this project :greetings-waveyellow:
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Re: Planning and riding the Spain TET

Post by Simon_100 » Mon Dec 17, 2018 1:44 pm

Didado wrote:
Mon Dec 17, 2018 7:59 am
Thanks for all the work again. I have a minor request for future versions of the Spanish TET. Please put a zero before the single digit section numbers so that on the PC or in Basecamp the sections are listed in order in stead of Spain-Section-1, Spain-Section-10 etc.

In other words Spain-Section-01, Spain-Section-02 etc. I know it is almost irritatingly minor considering all the great work you put into this project :greetings-waveyellow:
What an excellent idea, I wish I'd thought of it! Job done in the next update! :)
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Visit thespanishbiker.com, 'The essential companion to biking in Spain' :P

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