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Tandem Cycling A bicycle built for two. Want to find out more about this wonderful world of tandems? Check out this forum to talk with other tandem enthusiasts. Captains and stokers welcome!

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Old 05-25-10, 01:20 PM   #1
cornucopia72
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Tandem touring Spain/Barcelona

We and another team are planning a trip to Spain late September/early October and we are looking for input/ideas/advise from our fellow tandem riders. We are thinking on flying in and departing from Barcelona and we have 2 weeks total for the trip. We are thinking of doing a loop that would be about 400 to 500 miles long (eight days of touring at 40 to 60 miles each day). We want to do a couple of days worth of climbing on the Pyrenees. I am posting this in the touring forum but after a quick search I noticed questions like this one go unanswered there... We are mostly interested on routes, must see places and should avoid places.

Thanks,

A & R
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Old 05-26-10, 10:21 AM   #2
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We are also planning a late September trip to the Girona area , an hour or so north of Barcelona. We'll be doing a packaged tour on single bikes though. You may want to contact the tour company we're using Creative Catalonia, http://www.creativecatalonia.com/
They do customized tours in that region so they are very familiar with the area and the best bike routes. The company is run by an English speaking couple. All reviews I've found of this company were excellent.
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Old 05-26-10, 10:40 AM   #3
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Some friends in the Tailwind Tandem Club did this last year. Here is an article about it:
http://docs.google.com/leaf?id=0B6Vz...YTQ5NjUz&hl=en
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Old 05-26-10, 11:07 AM   #4
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DKMcK: Thank you for the link. That is the same kind of tour that we want to do. We will try to get the book referenced there plus a road map for the area.

ct-vt-trekker: thanks for the contact. We will contact the owners and see if they wnat to share their knowledge about routes.
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Old 05-26-10, 07:42 PM   #5
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Don't know how far west into the Pyrenees you want to go, but if you cross into France (e.g. N141 from Bossost, Spain, over the Col de Portillon into Bagnieres-de-Luchon) you can't go wrong with a spectacular loop up over the Port de Bales. The route is entirely paved now since it was used on a stage in the Tour de France a couple of years ago. You leave B.-de-L. on the road to the Col de Peyresourde just a couple of km and then turn off up a delightful little road that passes through a few hamlets and then becomes one lane all the way to the top, then down steeply through the woods and waterfalls on an older two-lane (barely) road to Mauleon-Barousse -- stop for steak et frites if you get to the restaurant in time -- , then cruise back to Luchon up a broad valley that ends at the mountain wall. Be prepared for heavy braking on the descent -- more corkscrew than hairpin. Minimal auto traffic once off the main road, even less if you did it counterclockwise with the valley road early in the morning. The Villa Portillon right in the town of B.-de-L. is a great B&B-type inn run by a British expat. couple, Mike and Annette Jones, who enjoy having cyclists and can suggest other great loops, too. The town is right on the route taken by the Raid Pyreneen with its big classic cols (Tourmalet, Aspet, Aubisque, etc.)
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Old 05-27-10, 12:07 AM   #6
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conspiratemus1 , Thanks for sharing. Do you, or anyone else, have any idea what kind of elevation gain would the following route have:

Take the train to Lleida (about 80 miles away)
Take Hwy N230 North and then D618a into France's Bagnieres-de-Luchon:

http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&sour...040466&t=h&z=9

Back on D 618a and N230 then East on Hwy C28 then C13 then N260 then North on N145 into Andorra la bella; back S on N145 East on N260
South on C16 into Manresa or Terrasa and from there train to Barcelona.
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Old 05-27-10, 08:16 AM   #7
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wow! be sure to post some pictures. that sounds like an amazing trip. have fun!
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Old 05-27-10, 09:56 AM   #8
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The reference for tandem cycling in Spain is my friend Carles Soler:

http://tandem-total.blogspot.com/

He is 45 km South West of Barcelona, at Vilanova i la Geltrú.

I have never communicated with him in English though.

He organizes a yearly tandem ride. Send him an e-mail through his blogg.
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Old 05-27-10, 07:43 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cornucopia72 View Post
conspiratemus1 , Thanks for sharing. Do you, or anyone else, have any idea what kind of elevation gain would the following route have:

Take the train to Lleida (about 80 miles away)
Take Hwy N230 North and then D618a into France's Bagnieres-de-Luchon:

http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&sour...040466&t=h&z=9

Back on D 618a and N230 then East on Hwy C28 then C13 then N260 then North on N145 into Andorra la bella; back S on N145 East on N260
South on C16 into Manresa or Terrasa and from there train to Barcelona.
Just be careful: south of Vielha the N-230 takes a 5.2-km dual-carriageway tunnel under the Pyrenees. No idea what the rules about bikes in freeways & tunnels are in Spain, but would you really want to spend most of an hour (climbing) inside a tunnel? I wonder if they have shuttle vans to ferry bicycles through??
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