Author Topic: Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port  (Read 306 times)

CrazyEnglishTriathlete

  • Miles eaten don't satisfy hunger
  • Chartered accountant in 5 different decades
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Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port
« on: 22 December, 2021, 01:52:30 pm »
I was randomly looking somewhere up a couple of months ago, and ended up putting a Google Streetview pin in the western part of the French Pyrenees, not far from Saint-Jean-Pied-a-Port (45 minutes from Biarritz). The roads were stunning - just like the best roads in Wales except the hills were bigger and they went on for longer.

https://www.google.com/maps/@43.0512309,-1.2117123,3a,75y,159.45h,75.68t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sZuYb2AOawMxBiy9LeOcxZA!2e0!7i16384!8i8192 is a taster.  Am thinking of heading down there when the weather is nicer and the Covid is calmer and just going for day rides as long as the legs and the weather will allow.  Any thoughts?
Eddington Numbers 127 (imperial), 178 (metric) 540 (furlongs)  113 (nautical miles)

Socks

  • Clennel Street on my touring bike
Re: Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port
« Reply #1 on: 22 December, 2021, 02:09:00 pm »
It's a lovely place, with some good routes.  I've been there a couple of times.  From what I can remember, some possibilities would be:

- Heading West over the Col d'Iseguy on the D949, some fantastic views and there used to be a cafe at the top which may still be open
- Down the D949 then a minor road that follows the river, to Espelette.  Picturesque old town and a centre of chilli production - they hang them off the sides of the houses to dry out.
- Up into the mountains on the D18 and the D417, then maybe back on the D301

Diesel

  • or Richard
Re: Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port
« Reply #2 on: 22 December, 2021, 02:20:25 pm »
I've only ridden there once, but had a great day in that area (or just to the west of there)

I took the coast road from Biarritz over the border then headed into the Pyrenees from the Spanish side. I got lucky as I discovered I was on the route of the Vuelta the day they came through so stopped and watched then descended before they opened the road to traffic.

Lovely countryside and very quiet roads in the Pyrenees bit.

Here is the route I took - https://ridewithgps.com/routes/15773413

CrazyEnglishTriathlete

  • Miles eaten don't satisfy hunger
  • Chartered accountant in 5 different decades
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Re: Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port
« Reply #3 on: 22 December, 2021, 03:50:48 pm »
It's a lovely place, with some good routes.  I've been there a couple of times.  From what I can remember, some possibilities would be:

- Heading West over the Col d'Iseguy on the D949, some fantastic views and there used to be a cafe at the top which may still be open
- Down the D949 then a minor road that follows the river, to Espelette.  Picturesque old town and a centre of chilli production - they hang them off the sides of the houses to dry out.
- Up into the mountains on the D18 and the D417, then maybe back on the D301

That first suggestion looks cool (except the chilis, which I hope will be sufficiently hot!).  The second one looks similar to this sketch of a plan:

https://ridewithgps.com/routes/38203316

And then, for a big day out.  I had a day like this for my 50th birthday trip in the Alps a few years back, and still have the Roberts race bike with the much needed triple chain ring and 28.5" bottom gear for those ultra-steep sections.

https://ridewithgps.com/routes/38219195

I like the idea of border crossings, again assuming Covid has calmed down and I don't find myself locked up in quarantine in a Spanish village.

Eddington Numbers 127 (imperial), 178 (metric) 540 (furlongs)  113 (nautical miles)

Re: Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port
« Reply #4 on: 23 December, 2021, 05:22:39 pm »
It is fantastic - watch out for the one the pros call Col-de-Bugger-Me

IanDG

  • The p*** artist formerly known as 'Windy'
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Re: Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port
« Reply #5 on: 23 December, 2021, 05:24:26 pm »
Useless trivia - my sister did a french exchange with someone from there when she was a teenager.