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Week-end improvisé, 2 jours dans le Massif des Maures

Improvised weekend, 2 days in the Massif des Maures


A piece of land, a chain of small mountains in the Var region, about an hour's drive from Nice. No summit above 800 meters, but endless track possibilities, especially in a wild area where we increasingly enjoy escaping during winter.

This time it was for a weekend with a night at the hotel. We're not quite ready to spend the night outdoors yet, even though the urge is there. But the choice is made, and we fully accept playing all day on the tracks to find a warm bed in the evening. So, we make the most of it until nightfall. You can check out the route on Komoot .

The first day was one of the biggest stages. We parked at the foot of the massif and delved into the woods only to emerge in the evening. Here, almost all the tracks are maintained, sometimes offering beautiful billiards where we let ourselves glide downhill. But, as we like to venture and test Komoot's limits, we find ourselves pushing or carrying our bikes…

The first track climbs sharply, and we gradually pedal. We don't turn back, leaving civilization behind with saddlebags filled with sandwiches, sweets, and even enough to make a good hot coffee. We move forward, zigzagging through the mountains. The clouds are low, providing an even wilder landscape. No noise, nothing. It's pretty amazing. We reach the crest road, an old bumpy road above the village of Plan de la Tour. We've taken this road before but in the other direction. Seeing all the possibilities from up there, we wanted to try another slope and explore all the craziest tracks. From there, we shift to the other side and look for a place to have lunch. We lean our bikes against a huge water tank that lines these risky paths in the middle of summer. We empty our saddlebags ; ham and butter sandwich for purists, Balisto for dessert, and we set up the stove and the titanium flask to heat water with coffee. This time we brought a small stove, a small gas bottle, and placed the flask directly on top. It heats up in less than 2 minutes, and there we pour it into our French Press cups found by Matthieu, a great find. Nothing more to add about that moment.

We take some photos, check the map profile, and go back on a beautiful descent. Then we dive into a path with a few houses, and behind one of the gates, a dog and his pig friend greet us by wagging its corkscrew tail. Quite funny to encounter a domestic pig in the middle of this hunting ground. This marks the beginning of a section that approaches exploration. We follow a single track along the river. So far, so good, and it's quite fun. Then comes the moment to cross the river, just deep enough not to be able to do it by bike. Never mind, we take off shoes and socks and cross as far as possible, balancing on the rocks, and Matthieu almost ends up soaked.

It was genuinely entertaining. From there, the path becomes narrower and we suspect it's not a good sign. It rolls a bit at the beginning, then we find ourselves in front of a steep slope of a single massive rock... no choice, we continue. We walk, push for a short while, I don't know how long. We sweat too. And when we can finally get back on the bike, we realize the track hasn't been used for a long time. But we like that precisely. In any case, it goes. At the end, we find a track and the road to Collobrieres ; the only small section of road, and we won't meet anyone there.

Last gravel stretch, we go back up another mountain as the sun goes down. This will give us the opportunity to have another coffee and a Snickers with an amazing view. Just close your eyes to go back there and enjoy the moment. We take our time because we know it's the end of the day. A beautiful descent awaits us to the village. We put on everything we have, and we can turn on the lights and go down at full speed.


We arrived in the village of Collobrieres that I frequented when I lived in the area. Known for its chestnut festival, it's also one of the most beautiful villages in the massif. If you stop, book at the Auberge des Maures, whether it's for their mushroom omelet, chestnut ice cream, or even a night's rest. For us, it's the meeting point, and we always manage to put our feet under the table for lunch.

The next day we leave well covered from head to toe. It's not very warm, but it will quickly change with the percentage that awaits us. We leave the village towards Cuers to take a small road on the right and then a wet track. Matthieu stops to adjust the tire pressure, and it's quite an art, especially with this new gem that you can discover in our shop . In the meantime, I took some photos of the scene, the trees around, and the atmosphere.

We start slowly. It goes up, it goes up on a narrow track ; we pass on a billiard table track, an empty hunters' house, then a few steep slopes before reaching the small road to Notre-Dame des Anges ; a chapel perched at exactly 768 meters. It's time to switch to the other side of the massif, which also announces the near end of this day that we would like to make last. We let ourselves go to discover new tracks, even if we already know the area well, we feel there is still something to do. We meet some hunters, a group of friends on mountain bikes, but it remains rather calm. No one comes around here. At a crossroads, we stop to have a bite on a plateau in the sun : it will be the rest of the pizza from the day before and the small coffee that warms up. However, we had to ask the hotel's café owner to give us some ground coffee, and that one will turn our stomachs... in any case, it was really nice, and we drank our steaming cups. We pack everything up and tackle the last track to the car. A beautiful track where we stop once or twice to look at the landscape, then we leave as satisfied with all these tracks that are waiting for us to come back.

Well, it's ending, but we'll be back soon, promise. Zou (let’s go).