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GR route marking and motorcycles

Caminando

Veteran Member
I think this will apply to all GR pilgrim routes in France, certainly the GR65 and the route through Morvan from Vezelay.

I refer to the route marking thoughtfully done by the French Randonnee Association- those red and white markings for the routes all over France.

Unfortunately, offroad motos use the routes too, and in the process are destroying so many of the paths. Many used to be mule/pack pony routes, maintained by locals, which no longer happens. I have seen ruts 1 metre deep in the paths, caused by motos, then rain, which washes away the earth.Tree roots are cut by tyres, which adds to soil erosion;stones are exposed which roll underfoot. There is a section of paved mediaeval path near St Chely d'Apcher which is completely destroyed. I have see a lot of destruction, and in France it seems they can do this if the local mairie agrees, and many do. I have seen 20 bikes in a group passing on the paths, with so much churning of the earth.I dont think anything will be done till it's too late.

A German motorcyclist told me "Yes we do this kind of trailriding in France - you can do anything there, and it's forbidden in Germany".

So I have mixed feelings about marking routes. :arrow:
 
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The Germans may not know, or may not be respecting, the French laws on off-road vehicles:

"Off roading as driving where no tracks are is strictly forbidden. For the rest it's not that easy. Generally using an existing public lane is allowed. Interdictions are always clearly posted. A sign "Propriété privée" means private property and you should keep out even if no additional interdictions are posted. The same applies for a "Foret Domaniale", an forest owned by the state and run by the forest service. Not all interdictions are legal but as a visitor you should obey them. Fines are high and you risk even prison in extreme cases. We have already seen real hunts by the Gendarmerie for 4x4's."

Unless the GR is approved for motorized vehicles, which seems to be done by the provincial authorities, they are prohibited.
 

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