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< - >  Construct  —   Routing - Track - Route  —   VELOMAP  —   3D Route Builder  —   GPX Viewer


Once the guidance mode has been chosen (see page Guiding) the route must be built.

First of all it is the main theme: such and such a region, such and such a river, canal, particular path in such and such a country (or countries).

Then you have to fix the ends. From which origin to which end?. This is where the distance/duration you set yourself, as well as the transport possibilities to and from these ends come into play.

After this little sketch comes the big piece, BUILDING THE ROUTE of your bike ride.

The purpose of this phase is to have a computer file that describes in a vectorial way the whole route of the hike. The file contains as many sections as there are days or stages. Thus this file, once injected into the handlebar GPS, will allow to have a perfect guidance each day with a real time balance of what is covered since the morning and what remains to be covered (in distance and time) until the stage.

The ideal would be to have this course all finished, all ready, all hot… sort of served on a platter. In practice it's not quite that simple. Even if by a miracle we find the rare pearl on the Web, we will still not have the luck (of coc…) that this course includes the same accommodations. But it is appropriate to be cool that the daily routes start where we spend the night and end where we will spend the next night. Just to go, straight to the point, to the well deserved rest.

In any case, the basic principle to create your route is :

  1. Retrieve from the Web the maximum number of GPX files that already define as many portions of the desired route as possible.
  2. Import these files into a software program with a digitized topographic and elevation map background.
  3. Modify what should be modified, for example you may want to use a variant not foreseen by the file author.
  4. Create from scratch the portions that have not been found on the Web:
    1. From routes plotted on PDF or paper maps.
    2. Or, in the absence of a map, by inventing a route through quiet paths and roads from the digitized topographic map background of the software you are using.
  5. Make the missing links between all these pieces of course.
  6. Make the diversions to accommodation, which are generally found during this work (creation of the route and search for accommodation being done in parallel)…

There are some technical subtleties to know to juggle between GPX files, cartography and GPS.

Don't hesitate to consult our MINI VADEMECUM of the perfect carto-cyclist.

VELOMAP - The current and universal solution

Stemming from the OpenStreetMap Project (OSM), the FREE VELOMAP solution makes it possible to build cycling routes EVERYWHERE IN THE WORLD.

See all the details on our page VELOMAP - OPENSTREETMAP.


For your information, here are the old solutions we used before VELOMAP:

  • FRANCE : CartoExplorer 3D (IGN)
  • GERMANY : MagicMaps
  • SWITZERLAND : SwissMap
  • EUROP : MapSource
Update du 03/29/2016
cyclo-hiking — cycling — cyclo ride — cyclorandonnee — cycle-tourism — cycling tourism — Bike — E.Bike — bicycle trip — bike itinerary — cycling route — channels — green lane— cycle route — moutain bike