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Andorra

Your Linesman

Xabier Ajona

Coming from Navarra, on the south side of the Pyrenees I have always linked my personal and professional life with mountains and outdoor activities.

My parents went on a Sanglas on their honeymoon on 1975, and since then our family’s life has been linked to motorbikes. I got my first bike at the age of 8. The first two, were made of pieces – kind of Frankensteins, then a Bultaco Enduro 80 and the dual sport XT350 and NX650.

After leaving my hometown 20 years ago, I’ve lived in the French Alps, Argentinian Patagonia and Andorra – always looking for mountains, snow and nature.

I discovered the TET a year ago via the web and felt it could be a fantastic way to give back to the motorbike community some of what I’ve enjoyed the past 42 years.

DOWNLOAD THE GPX TRACK

The trail has been put up by country based volunteers. The accuracy of the trail is not guaranteed, nor are the GPS co-ordinates. We do not represent or warrant that materials in the site or the services are accurate, complete, reliable, current or error-free. We cannot represent or warrant that the site or its servers are free of viruses or other harmful components. If you stray onto private land, apologise and get back onto the byway or trail. These trails can be shut or permanently closed at short notice under local law. Do not ride trails beyond your capability. If unsure, get off your bike and walk the trail first. Trail riding alone, especially on trails you do not know is really unwise. Wear the proper safety kit. Many country trails are rarely maintained. You will find ruts, holes, floods, treacherous surfaces and the occasional booby trap hazard deliberately placed by people who do not like motorcycles using trails. When you use the trails, you are on your own. You exercise your judgement in your own skills and your own navigation. All we can do is show you where some of the trails are, but this can change at a moment’s notice.

Practical tips for trails you do not know;

  1.  Ride in at least a pair. If you fall with a motorcycle pinning you down to cold and damp earth, in the Europe we do not have to worry about being eaten by exotic carnivores (usually!) but exposure, hypothermia and shock can do a very effective job of killing you. Do not rely on the trails having a regular through flow of users to come to your aid
  2. If your riding companion cannot pick your bike up off you then get a lighter bike, a stronger riding companion or ride in a bigger group
  3. Trails can vary immensely. A vehicular right of way can be a rocky or muddy scramble
  4. Adventure bikes – especially on adventure tyres – can struggle with some trails. Do not just bowl into trails because they are on a map – they can be horribly technical and totally unsuitable for even fairly competent riders on light machines or experienced riders on bigger machines
  5. Stop for horses and kill your engines to let equestrians pass. A horse spooking at a bike revving will be likely to result in criminal charges if the police get involved and a motorcycle is a lot easier to control than a horse
  6. On the trails there will be free running dogs. Do your best to be nice to them
  7. Mobile phone coverage can be patchy on the trails. Do not rely on calling an ambulance – if you’ve got stuck, the emergency services are going to get just as stuck trying to retrieve you. That is if you can raise them by telephone
  8. Finally, obey the golden rule, which is don’t be a dick by unnecessarily annoying other country side users or letting ego outstrip talent.

ROUTE INFO

Mid May - Mid November although snow has been know to fall on Pic Negre in August
La Rabassa Ski Resort
Catalan although Spanish is spoken by everyone, French by half and English by a quarter (roughly)
Fire & Mountain Rescue 112
Police 110
Wild camping is illegal unless beside a mountain refuge.
Motorcycles are not allowed on walking trails of any kind.

I am working hard to clarify where TET riders can go and find out what the fines are if you get it wrong. Watch this space...
Andorra is into Trial Riding and Ice Riding and there are races and events dotted throughout the year. See the Andorran Motorcycle Federation website
for a calendar

ROUTE OVERVIEW

Andorra is full of amazing trails but unfortunately most of them have dead ends or are too technical for adventure bikes. Consequently, there are not many trails in the Andorran part of the TET and you will find yourself passing through mainly on tarmac. That said, surrounding Spain is a treasure chest and Andorra is an important stepping stone when riding them. The trail riding laws here are also fairly vague, some say allowing authorities to turn a blind eye on locals and stop tourists. That said, it is a relaxed country of lovely people, so if you find yourself lost on private land and respectfully ask the locals for directions, you will be confronted with nothing but smiles and a friendly finger pointing in the right direction.

WHAT NOT TO MISS

Andorra is a pretty small country but it has a lot to offer if you know where to look.

Make sure you take a ride on the Tobotronc which you will pass right by next to Pic Negre. If you like rollercoasters you’ll love it!

If you have time and you’re not afraid of heights, stop by the tourist office and ask about the various Via Ferratas around Andorra, they are truly breathtaking in every way (the views, physically and mentally!).

Lastly, as a biker, if you need gear, stop by one of the many motorcycle shops in the country. Motocard in Andorra La Vella has 2 floors of bike gear at tax free prices. You’ll probably end up leaving the country with a new set of tyres and an extra bag on your bike packed with goodies.

RESOURCES