WK 400 ride TET Santander to Leon October 2019

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Glenn_G
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WK 400 ride TET Santander to Leon October 2019

Post by Glenn_G » Fri Oct 25, 2019 1:56 pm

WK 400 ride from Santander west towards Leon, Spain during late September, early October 2019

Day 1 Sunday 29th Sep 2019

I left a damp Milton Keynes a little after 9am and rode south west, with a brief stop at the Cotswolds services on the M5. Met a couple of guys who were taking their KTM 690's to Spain in a van, also heading for the same Plymouth ferry. I later passed a lightly loaded CRF250L on the M5, wonder where he was headed? Popped into Tesco's on the outskirts of Exeter for fuel, but a mile or so later at the traffic lights the clutch cable snapped


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pulled off onto the grass verge and swapped over to already plumbed in spare cable


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it turns out the snapped cable had done ~15000 miles. I popped into visit Simon who was planning on joining me later out in Spain, met his wife and daughter for a quick hello and goodbye, before racing off to catch the ferry. It didn't help that I got on the M5 junction 31 going east (not west doh) and so had to go up to junction 30, come off there, loop around and then back down the M5 going west. Once back past junction 31 I headed south west as fast as I could to the ferry port, checked in with a coupe of minutes to spare phew! Being one of the last on the boat meant that I got pole position when leaving the boat


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As I was solo going out, I thought I'd try the loung seats for the first time


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instead of a cabin, as they were cheaper. The seats had their own little room almost on the top deck (9), being next to a little pool and a bar. Once under way the boat felt like it was moving alot and I felt rough even after taking motion sickness tablets. So with no appetite for a meal and the pool bar closed I crashed out early. The seats weren't that comfortable and dont recline all the way flat. I ended up laying on the floor for the night lol, other more experienced travellers had brought their air mats for this very purpose.

239miles / 382km


Day 2 Monday 30th Sep 2019

Surprisingly I slept for hours and even better awoke to a calm sea, though still felt rough. Time passed by, watched a bit of the World Cup Rugby on the big screen I found on Deck 8. Once off the boat a short road stint before starting section E at Hornedo. Almost missed the turn off through a gap in the hedge


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then through some boggy going


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Followed by a steep downhill section, early evening by now but still very hot and I was sweating buckets after that tricky downhill section. Easy going afterwards and made it to Loredo by the sea, but all three campsites were closed (out of season it appears). So carried on till near dark ~8pm and found a place to crash for the night. My poncho on some large grass? leaves pulled out of the ground was a better bed than expected, unusually not cold and almost warm at night helped (wooded and cloud cover?). Kriega R3 made a good pillow for the night lol


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It was lovely for a few minutes laid there looking up at the stars through the trees, though I did wake up a few times during the night due to strange noises

42miles / 67km

Day 3 Tuesday 1st Oct 2019

Morning came and it was cold and damp but an easy packup today


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and soon under way over a stony brook


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Then came to a fallen tree branch


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I've been carrying a compact folding saw for years, and first time I got to use it in anger


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Shortly after this the trail goes uphill over a few rocks, steps etc

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I couldn't get up there, so I unloaded the heavy luggage and took it uphill to try again


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No joy as too slippy/steep for me and not wishing to burn out my clutch or worse end up in the gulley to the side I turned around looking for a detour. Going under the Auto Del Cantabrico fly over through a few small villages like Villavia, La Portilla, Rocillo then back under the fly over to pick up the TET route again. At the end of a dusty trail I could see the route takes a sharp left soon, but was put off by a huge dog not chained up approaching quickly. This caused me to miss the left turn and I was confronted by a fenced off area, thnakfully it's lady owner appeared and ordered it to stop chasing me lol and even better pointed me in the correct direction back on the trail lol Just after the TET route heads through a 'Prohibido El Paso', did wonder if it was a Garmin waypoint reduction effect as I detoured around the adjacent loop road. (I later see no need to email the linesman for this feedback as it's included in Spain 2019-10-01 edition).

Heading towards sea


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and dropped into Castro Urdiales Dia supermarket for water etc and walking back to my bike I could see a man struggling to walk with a stick to his van and push his trolley. I offered to move my adjacent bike but no need he said. He popped his groceries in his front seat, and I offerred to take his trolley back, which he was happy with. On my return he gestured to the back of his his van, he wanted me to open the doors - uhmm I thought whats occurring here then ! No need to worry he was a fruit and veg man lol he wanted to show his appreciattion, I declined a bagful explaining they would get crushed on the bike but gratefully took an orange and ate it there as he trundled off - nice.

Then got on the E1 section past the nice picnic spot


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Later on rocky up hill sections, past some chained up guard dogs and then dropped the bike near the top and had to remove the luggage to pick it up as the bike was laid at an awkward angle with pannier wedged under rock slab


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Later the trail ran along the main road briefly


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Tried campsite search earlier in the day and came to La Isla which appeared closed but the gate was ajar, tried phoning/texting the site but no response. A local guy walking by ushered me in and called out to them but no response, he wondered off and suggested I scouted the site some more. I found the toilets and water working - good, but no hot water in the showers - not so good. Back out on the road by the entrance a car pulled over and the lady driver said it was closed, however a passenger in the car got on her phone whilst I was trying to explain to the driver via translate app I'm tired and is there any chance of me camping here tonight. The lady passenger (apparently they knew the owner) said 'Si' and they pulled over and opened up the gates, let me in and showed me where to pitch. Tent up


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followed by a cold shower which woke me up ! and then cooked up some grub - result.


https://campinglaisla.com/

Camping La Isla Calle Travesía El Ribero, s/n, 09569 Villalázara, Burgos, Spain +34 646 42 18 04

73miles / 117km
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Glenn_G
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Re: WK 400 ride TET Santander to Leon October 2019

Post by Glenn_G » Fri Oct 25, 2019 2:06 pm

Day 4 Wednesday 2nd Oct 2019

Left the campsite and had to put on waterproofs as drizzle and a misty start to the day, low cloud up the mountain at Bedon


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Then flattened out


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Stopped for a pee break and the bike iginition wouldn't work, wiggling the wires it seemed to work sometimes, struggled to find the issue inside the wiring. Rather than waste more time on it, decided to cut out the the switch and use a connector block


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It's boiling hot, so push bike back down trail to some shade. To make life easier in coming days turning ignition on & off think I'll use a croc clip under insualting tape, but it touches the frame a blows 15Amp fuse under the seat oops


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So swap fuse over and put connector block back in and marvel at my quality tidy work lol


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Alot of the afternoon gone now, so hunt for a campsite but no luck, so park up by the river Ebro at Fuente de Marfil picnic site and cook some grub


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A couple of robins kept dropping by scratching / rooting the floor for food


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My bed for the night


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42miles / 67km
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Glenn_G
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Re: WK 400 ride TET Santander to Leon October 2019

Post by Glenn_G » Fri Oct 25, 2019 2:21 pm

Day 5 Thursday 3rd Oct 2019

Cold and misty start to the day, couldn't see much ahead up amongst the wind turbines, soon warmed up by mid morning followed by sandy stony going and I could hear a strange tinkling clicking noise from the front end. Concerned I pulled over to find it was just the front brake cable routing clamp had come loose, tightened up and now okay. An hour or so later on a break notice a slight oil leak and exhasut nuts need tightening


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Low on fuel hit the A627 road to Repsol garage outskirts of Basconcillos Del Tozo, filled up and return back to the TET route. The riding is good


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though not so much fun without mates, strange as I used to enjoy the odd solo trip to get away from it all, but it appears not as I get older. South west of Pedra came across a ditch


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and no way was I going to try and bunny hop / jump the gap lol going back a little on the trail it was easy to reroute. (I later see no need to email the linesman for this feedback as it's included in Spain 2019-10-01 edition).

I wonder if the new road going in south of Bascones de Valdilia will include a TET crossing lol


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Late afternoon and pull over to search for a campsite on my phone and see a message from Simon. He can't join me out here as planned, as Doctors advise he cannot drive/ride for at least a month as his upper arm break has not healed enough. I decide to shorten my trip and plan to rearrange my return ferry, and make the most of it. The bikes ignition was dead again but the connector block appears okay, further investigation revealed the loose negative wires at the battery terminal


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the bike obviously taking a hammering, a quick tighten and all good. Head off on road to camping Monte Royal, nice good site


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with a nice bar area etc and a nice dog


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more of him and his pal later. Tent up and the midges/flies were out but some smidge cream on kept them at bay. Happened to browse TET FB page and see Spain had been updated whilst I was away, so downloaded it to my Samsung S6 phone. My S6 has no expansion memory slot to accept my Garmin Montanna microSD card, so got a chance to try my On The Go (OTG) adapter cable


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Using the OTG adapter and a microSD/USB stick my usual ES File Explorer app would not transfer the GPX files from my S6 to my Garmin Montanna microSD card. A google search suggested ES File Explorer getting on abit and not developed as much as others, so downloaded and tried Solid Explorer and this worked fine. A quick test of the Montanna and I could see the updated gpx routes and it appears I'm now on GNR05. Later on after brushing my teeth walking back to my tent the dog appeared and I made a fuss patting him and saying goodnight. He promptly followed me back and was half in my tent looking for food I guess, he was suprisingly strong for a small dog but I managed to get him out lol

Camping Monte Royal
Road Virgen del Llano
34800
Aguilar de Campoo
Palencia
Phone: +34 979 181 007
info@campingmonteroyal.com
http://www.campingmonteroyal.com/

101miles / 162km
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Glenn_G
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Re: WK 400 ride TET Santander to Leon October 2019

Post by Glenn_G » Fri Oct 25, 2019 2:45 pm

Day 6 Friday 4th Oct 2019

The little dog brought his pal round this morning


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for some fuss


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It's a really nice site and would go back again


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Back on the TET route and some rocky and flat going


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then tricky section after radio towers and glad I stopped to walk it first as if going straight on is a steep descent


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I choose the less steep left hand trail


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A few more birds of prey seen which I like


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One only 10 feet or so away as I approached some trees and it took flight. Enjoyed the scenery and the bike trundling along nicely, some areas feeling close to civilisation, others very remote


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Few campsites around so road it (45mins) to Camping Reino De Vadinia at Cisterna, with the now daily monring & evening ritual of disconnecting the ignition connector block


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This site is not as good as Monte


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but it is open all year round, and the showers had hot water lol and the local football team out training gave me something to watch while I cooked up some grub washed down with some vino tinto. It was windy getting cold in the evening enough that I put my chair down wind of the tent for some cover.

https://www.campingcistierna.es/
Sports Center Street, 42,
24800 Cistierna, León
Telephone: 653 89 49 54

97miles / 155km
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Glenn_G
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Re: WK 400 ride TET Santander to Leon October 2019

Post by Glenn_G » Fri Oct 25, 2019 3:08 pm

Day 7 Saturday 5th Oct 2019

Nice morning packing up


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I called Brittany Ferries and changed my return ferry to Monday 7th October and got a cabin - luxury! So on leaving site rather than go back via the road to where I left the TET yesterday and carry on the TET westwards, I hit the road south to Leon only ~20km to pickup the TET at the Hotel La Alegria. From here I headed along the TET going eastwards now to where I finished it yesterday,(after which I planned to road it to Camping Monte Royal for chilling out before returning on Ferry Monday.) Later in open going and very hot I couldn't find the right track initially and wasn't comfortable following the hedge line here


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but a little back tracking and managed to find a wide trail way out. Nice coloured soil and views and feeling remote, then realised I was passing athrough a golf course lol


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A little later plodding along the trail approaching a T junction I see a farmer in his tractor working the soil. Two large barking dogs appraoched me quickly from the side, a little throttle and I accelerated away, only to see a third dog laid down by the approaching T junction. Thankfully this third dog didn't get up and I made the turn fine, only to hear/see the other two dogs close behind me, obviously not given up my chase ! Lots of throttle and I managed to pull away to safety and then let my heart beat calm down lol Later the route took me through the woods on a great long trail with lovely smells of sawn timber and other scents


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Just after a small deer crossed my path and unusually didn't scarper off but just stood in the under growth looking back at me, probably thinking this is my home be on your way lol Then I ended up at the Repsol garage on the 2298 just near Fresno Del Rio, this is where I got to on the TET west route yesterday before roading it to Camping Reino De Vadinia. A friendly chap filled up my tank and was handing out free lollipops, made me think back to being a kid watching the Kojak tv show. Quick check over the bike before hitting the road back to Monte Royal campsite, found a loose brake pedal screw


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back at the camp site a couple of cold lagers were in order, it was cooler inside


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then setup the tent


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tea for tonight soup, bread, & goats cheese lovely


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nice wooded view from tent on site


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99miles / 158km
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Glenn_G
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Re: WK 400 ride TET Santander to Leon October 2019

Post by Glenn_G » Fri Oct 25, 2019 3:19 pm

Day 8 Sunday 6th Oct 2019

Lazy day on site, whihc makes up for the wild camp sites earlier in the week lol Did a bit of bike prep, changed front sprocket from 14T to 15T for the road ride home, pulled the handlebars back to make it more comfortable crusing whilst sat down etc. Someone's not getting watered enough by the look of it


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Listened to some music, and started jotting some notes down for this report.

0miles / 0km
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Glenn_G
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Re: WK 400 ride TET Santander to Leon October 2019

Post by Glenn_G » Fri Oct 25, 2019 3:48 pm

Day 9 Monday 7th Oct 2019

Chilling having breakfast (granola bar and a cuppa) and could hear a wood pecker above in the trees, bets shot I could get before he flew off was this


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Followed by lunch a few hours later cheese, chorizo and bread


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Brittany Ferries texted to say boat will be delayed 3.5 hours due to a medical evacuation. So leisurely packed up and made my way to Santander. On leaving town at the junction the Garmin OSM map routing was telling me to go south to Palencia! There was a Santander road sign which I took and ignored the OSM guidance to get on the A67 dual carriageway. Instead I stuck to the more scenic N611 and trundled along at 90-100kmh as in no rush, with nice sweeping roads. Arrived in Santander early so parked up in the shade and chilled, later had a beer by the Quayside


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Wandered along the bikes killing time till boarding, in pole position was this nice Royal Enfield


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a few bikes waiting


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once on board grabbed some fish and chips and a couple of pints, watching the footie on the tele in the side room before crashing


71miles / 113km

Day 10 Tuesday 8th Oct 2019

Thankfully on the return journey I wasn't feeling as nauseous and was able to get a full english breakfast down me and watch some of the rugby world cup before kitting up a leaving the boat. Saw a few of the same bikes on the M5 later going north including the Royal Enfield. A little detour around Northleach as the A40 was shut that night, but got back to MK okay.

225miles / 360km


Total trip 989miles / 1582km

Thanks to all the linesmen who make these trips possible like Simon Rice, and of course John Ross.
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