Mates, Gravel, The Vosges – Moustache Bikes

Mates, Gravel, The Vosges – Moustache Bikes

Mates, Gravel, The Vosges

Since this concept first got here to thoughts, we couldn’t wait to place it into motion and eventually do that little level to level Gravel journey across the summit of Hohneck. A while to place collectively the proper staff of motivated riders for this getaway on Dimanche 29s and to search out the precise climate window in a really temperamental summer time, and we have been (lastly) prepared to go off on this micro-adventure.

The goals of this expedition have been comparatively easy: spend two days on bikes, two days of sharing, of discovering Gravel for some and two days of enjoyable for all! Christophe, along with his intimate data of the paths within the Vosges, concocted an exquisite loop for us with small tracks, panoramic roads and strange experiences. Juliette, already an professional in E-MTB, got here up from the Haute-Savoie to find our lovely Vosges landscapes. For Valentine, it was her first time on a Gravel bike and she or he began this journey with a combination of apprehension and enthusiasm. Clément, for his half, rides a Dimanche 29.5 typically within the Vosges and he was eager to find this new route. To finish the staff, Jérémie as soon as once more accompanied us with a view to seize this “ebike-packing journey” on video!

Our place to begin was on the sting of the Gérardmer lake, the “pearl” of the Vosges. We start with a fast snack on the native bakers after which it’s time for the small staff to go off. The climate is ideal and we depart the chaos of the city heart on a little bit street that climbs steeply within the Rochires woods to achieve the excessive up Xonrupt-Longemer with a improbable view over the chalets. A formality for our Dimanche 29 Gravel bikes that simply swallowed up these first kilometers.

The rain of the previous couple of weeks has had its impact and the character is opulent, which in fact doesn’t displease us. We proceed the climb on a slender path, that’s enjoyable and generally technical however so lovely that we savour every second. This path takes us to the “Saint-Jacques de Gérardmer” refuge located at an altitude of 1075m. We don’t dangle round too lengthy and begin the rocky descent (take care on this half) which takes us in the direction of the Lispach lake.

Valentine has in a short time obtained acquainted and comfy along with her Dimanche 29 and she or he is basically impressing us by managing to stick with the group (due to the help modes 😉) and by driving sections the place we thought she’d must put her ft on the bottom.

The arrival at Lispach lake is at all times a mystical second with its peat bogs, its waters stuffed with fish and its wild magnificence. The best spot for a nicely earned bucolic lunch break! As soon as we’ve devoured our sandwiches, getting going once more is at all times a little bit laborious, however the dynamic help of our Dimanche 29s makes us overlook this.

We head shortly in the direction of the resort of La Bresse and make a begin on the lengthy climb on a typical extensive Gravel path. This winds by the forest earlier than popping out on the Haut Chitelet plateau with the reward of a ravishing view of the Hohneck that towers over us. To go out to overcome this, we take a steep technical path that passes subsequent to the Sotré refuge.

The climate continues to be simply nearly as good and we feast our eyes on the picture-postcard view of the Longemer and Retournemer lakes. We don’t dangle round an excessive amount of, the chamois are ready for us on the highest of Hohneck! We velocity in the direction of the summit which is filled with hikers taking within the 360° view from essentially the most emblematic peak within the Vosges (and the third highest within the Massif with an altitude of 1363m).

The route turns into rather more technical as we head onto the Alsacian facet with demanding passages however which nonetheless allow us to reach on time at our refuge. We grit our enamel! We take the time to identify a number of chamois who run the gauntlet of the rocky peaks and to take a photograph of the group, then proceed within the course of the resort of Gashney.

The hardest half is completed and the staff is collectively and smiling. Slightly shock earlier than the final descent on the street which takes us to our chosen place for the night: Valentine discovers that her pot of coconut oil introduced to assist with any sunburned pores and skin has cut up throughout her rear brake… Oops!! We attempt to clear it, however prudence might be wanted within the descent. The rear brake is instantly renamed “GRX-Coco”! We are going to clearly change the brake pads this night. That’s us arrived on the Hinterberg farm, hidden in the midst of the forest.

We’re warmly welcomed by Gaby, nearly 80 years previous and who continues to take care of his guests excessive up at Metzeral. This little typical farmstay is solely reserved for us and we benefit from the contemporary air on the finish of the day to have a drink on the terrasse and debrief the day. The morale of the staff is excessive, no falls, no technical mishaps other than Valentine’s “GRX-Coco” brake and the satisfaction of getting spent an unbelievable day on the massif of the Vosges. While we benefit from this time to recuperate, Gaby’s busy within the kitchen. He comes again a number of minutes later with a large Baeckoeffe [bèke-ofe]! This conventional Alsacian dish has already been cooking for a number of hours. Baeckeoffe signifies « Baker’s oven ». It’s a conventional dish, comprised of meat, potatoes and marinated greens, that housewives made earlier than going into the fields and left to prepare dinner within the baker’s oven, the one oven within the village in that interval. We did justice to the chef and devoured the scrumptious comforting dish earlier than heading to our rooms with a view to relaxation and regain power for the subsequent day.

A mild get up with a superb breakfast so now we have some reserves for this subsequent day of Gravel driving. We are saying goodbye to Gaby and we get again within the saddle to proceed our route. On the resort of Gaschney we trip on improbable forest singletracks. We cease to get some photographs. Jérémie, who’s filming this journey, stops us repeatedly all through the route with a view to redo a number of sections. It’s the event to catch our breath and to be attacked by mosquitos… a lot of them! After a protracted descent on a improbable Gravel observe, we arrive on the foot of the principle climb with 300m of peak achieve and slopes of 10% gradient in locations.

First, we’re on extensive tracks, then steep technical singletracks the place the extensive tires and highly effective motor come into their very own! Lastly, we end the climb on a freshly tarmacked street with a view of the cliffs on the Frankenthal-Missheilme reserve. On the prime of the Schlucht col that symbolically separates the Haut-Rhin and the Vosges, we don’t dangle about for too lengthy and flee the hustle and bustle of vacationers on a protracted street descent which lets us go quick. Arriving on the valley flooring, we trip the size of the Retournemer lake to then head to the Longemer lake.

Again on the tarmac to go around the lake and cross the village of Xonrupt. The top of our journey is shut and we benefit from the final kilometers collectively to make a little bit peloton heading in the direction of Gérardmer. We determine to complete these two days of driving and sharing with the final cease at chez Mémé (a pleasant café within the city heart) to toast and sate ourselves. The invoice, please! The previous few hundred meters take us to our begin level, on the shores of the Gérardmer lake, with the sensation of getting lived a fantastic human and sporting journey behind the bars of our Dimanche 29s on a mountain vary which didn’t cease shocking us all through our rides.

Slightly bonus: we’ve included under the GPX hint of our route. For these of you that haven’t had the chance to go to the Vosges, merely take your bike and escape as a household, with pals or by yourself. As we are saying, journey can begin on the nook of the street ;-{D

Suggestions on the expertise…


« I’m actually grateful and proud to have participated on this journey. Having solely a little bit little bit of MTB technical expertise and no expertise of motorbike packing, for me it was a complete unknown. However I couldn’t wait to reside this expertise, in nature, on bikes with passionate riders! Christophe ready an unbelievable route for us, with magnificent Vosges landscapes, technical sections, and simple flowing sections… It was diverse, I cherished it!

I used to be the least skilled within the group however I didn’t have the impression that I actually slowed them down. I need to admit that it was at instances troublesome however by no means unpleasant, fairly the other, I used to be completely happy as a result of due to the electric bike, I used to be capable of full a route that I’d have discovered troublesome to do on a motorbike with out help. And I’d by no means have been capable of observe the match group with out my Dimanche 29. What’s extra, the second day I actually gained in confidence due to the recommendation from Tof and Juju. They’re consultants and they’re very affected person. Their willingness to share their expertise, I discovered that incredible.

It was a enjoyable journey with out hassle (nicely okay, other than my GRX-Coco brake…). We didn’t have any moments of intense struggling regardless of the very lengthy technical route. We laughed quite a bit, we didn’t argue, everybody was completely happy to reside this expertise! And above all it was an opportunity to “change off”. The actual fact we left with simply what we might keep it up our bikes, to sleep in a hostel, that empties the pinnacle, we had the impression of recharging our batteries and that does us good. We wish to do all of it once more quickly, to go off and uncover new horizons. Gravel for me it’s the all spherical journey bike that permits you to go the place you need, whenever you need, accompanied or not. Freedom! »


I at all times method these 2-3 day micro-adventures with a lot of enthusiasm and impatience. All vital parts have been current for a profitable journey: a fantastic staff with diverse personalities and experiences, Christophe’s data of the terrain (in order to not get misplaced!), his jokes and common good humour, attention-grabbing folks to satisfy, beautiful trails and “image postcard” views. An actual letting out of steam to decompress, these escapades are for me a deep breath of air of which I’ve grow to be nuts about, and what’s extra if they are often shared with pals, it’s even higher!

The route was extraordinarily diverse and enjoyable from the begin to the end. On some technical elements that have been nearer to MTB I might really feel to what extent the Dimanche 29 was succesful. This bike is extremely comfortable all over the place and the place is basically comfy and safe to munch up the kilometers.

I’ve had the possibility to go to a little bit of the Vosges mountain vary since I landed right here in 2017. I by no means tire of the wild magnificence and the richness of the territory, but additionally the extremely heat welcome of the residents. It was a pleasure to share these two days on bikes with our nice staff and to indicate them our wonderful area. I feel that everybody actually appreciated this Moustache micro-adventure. I feel that I’ll quickly come again to trip some elements of the route that I actually cherished, particularly above the village of Xonrupt with its beautiful trails within the woods the place we had a inexperienced show. I’ve obtained pins and needles in my legs after I take into consideration this journey, I can’t await the subsequent!


My first expertise bikepacking, and first expertise of Gravel on unknown territory for the one “expatriate” of the group, as I used to be. A combo of latest experiences that I couldn’t wait to undertake surrounded by a fantastic staff! Two days of pure enjoyable crossing magnificent very diverse paths on Vosges and Alsacian terrain underneath the solar, with the bonus of emblematic locations such because the Schlucht or the Hohneck.

And what to say about this unbelievable hostel hidden within the forest the place we had the possibility to cross the night and the night time… An actual haven of peace and serenity the place we really feel so good… and in addition the place we might style a wonderful Baeckeoffe. I gained’t reveal the scale of the vacherin glacé that we tasted so as to not make everybody drool.

I ought to admit that I had some issues about Gravel driving: to trip on off-road paths and trails, on a street bike with large tires… pretty unusual. Coming from driving an MTB outfitted with suspension and used to a mountainous area with demanding trails, I had problem greedy the potential of this well-known Gravel driving which everybody speaks about. However this journey introduced me an enormous bundle of surprises and I used to be greatly surprised by the flexibility of the Dimanche 29. Past its “all-rounder” profile, I used to be stunned to have enjoyable descending on a inflexible bike with a low place (and sure, I didn’t assume that may be attainable!).


In the beginning for me it was about making a route on the Vosgian paths round Gérardmer, the “Pearl of the Vosges”, and La Bresse-Hohneck at an altitude of 1 363m. A problem which ought to hyperlink bike-packing on electrical Gravel bikes, with the blended ranges of the group members, the invention of the apply and exploration of latest landscapes (for gorgeous images!).

For me, who’s used to driving Gravel, pretty strongly a lot of the time, I actually appreciated this second sharing these little recognized paths with my teammates, a little bit like exhibiting others some secret passages… The Vosges mountain vary is understood for being notably hostile, as a lot for its severity in winter as for its stifling warmth in summer time, however we had the possibility to trip on an distinctive playground with good climate circumstances. The benefit with our Gravel bikes is that we are able to trip as simply on roads as on the off-road paths, even with some robust technical elements, and we felt completely comfortable all over the place.

The cherry on the cake for me was to see the grins and the joy of my camarades throughout our journey, and above all of the particularly heat welcome from our host Gaby who taken care of us as if we have been kings in his most genuine hostel. We have been handled with specialties of the Alsace area, equivalent to baeckeoffe and an infinite vacherin…

Home > News > Mates, Gravel, The Vosges

No outcome for this place.

The place to purchase your Moustache ?

Our bikes are distributed all through the world by a community of specialist retailers.
Discover the store closest to you by placing in your submit code or city.

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Check Also
Back to top button