Party pacing gravelista, bikepacker, photographer & general creative person living at the Veluwe, Netherlands.> Komoot ambassador 💚
> Shimano Gravel Alliance member, riding multiple awesome gravel events in 2020 & 2021 🤎
> Cannondale & Schwalbe ambassador
> Brain behind the GREEN DIVIDE
> Photographer for Mantel.com, Shimano, Wielrenblad & others 📸Follow my bikepacking and gravel adventures via Instagram, GravelUnion.cc and here on Komoot 🔍
GREEN DIVIDE by Erwin Sikkens
300 KM of nature in line over the Utrechtse Heuvelrug and the Veluwe.I created him... and became his first finisher! :-)
With this my 'GREEN DIVIDE patch' is in the pocket. No. 1 of the 50 is gone... in fact... Bas Rotgans drove the entire GREEN DIVIDE the next day as 2nd person and thus earned patch no. 2....
Curious about this route and that patch? Then read on!* What is the GREEN DIVIDE?
The GREEN DIVIDE is the longest and most beautiful unpaved natural traverse in the Netherlands. What started years ago as an idea to cycle unpaved from Arnhem to Zwolle, has now grown into this 300KM long super route. The route mainly consists of double track forest paths and gravel paths, interspersed with concrete paths and a few roads where there is no other option. The GREEN DIVIDE is therefore the perfect gravel bike and bikepacking trip in line over the Utrechtse Heuvelrug and the Veluwe.* Game rules and tips
Above all, the GREEN DIVIDE is not a race! The route uses open paths in nature, which you share with walkers and other cyclists. When cycling this route, respect the rules of conduct of the gravel code. See gravelcode.nl
Rules in the forest change regularly. Therefore, always read the signs of nature managers and adhere to the applicable rules.
There are also a number of practical things to keep in mind:
- You are not allowed to cycle or stay in nature at night. Not even on official bike paths. So plan your trip well in advance.
- Be mindful of water. You regularly cycle past villages on the Utrechtse Heuvelrug, but you come across them less regularly on the Veluwe. Places like the Woeste Hoeve or the snack bar near Assel are perfect places for a stopover to refill your water bottles.
- Parts of Kroondomein het Loo in this route are closed to the public between 15 September and 24 December.
- A Natuurmonumenten MTB permit is required for a small part of the route. Make sure you have these with you while driving and if necessary order them online:
natuurmonumenten.nl/mtb/vignette* 300 KM too long?
Drive the route in several days or drive one of the other routes from the GREEN DIVIDE collection, such as the HEUVELRUG DIVIDE or the VELUWE DIVIDE.
komoot.nl/collection/1176472/-green-divide* Social Media
Do you ride the GREEN DIVIDE or one of the other routes from the GREEN DIVIDE collection? Share your adventures with me! Here on Komoot, but also via Instagram
instagram.com/@erwinsikkens_com*GREEN DIVDE Patch
Komoot has made a special patch available for the first 50 finishers. For this you have to drive the route in 1 or more consecutive closed days.
The first 2 patches have now been released... 48 pieces left (*written in June 2021).
Drive the route and earn this collector's item for your bag, cap or blouse!#GREENDIVIDE #KOMOOT
June 9, 2021
A wonderful Rapha RCC Veluwe transfer ride in the (finally) warm spring sun!For Rapha Amsterdam I drew the route for the day and together with RCC Coordinator Vincent I invited the Amsterdam RCC to come and cycle for a day in the beautiful Veluwe.The ride had been planned for some time, but suddenly coincided very nicely with the late arrival of spring and the release of group rides by the government. The consequence? A wonderful day on the bike under a scorching sun and after a delicious post-ride beer + bitterballen.A ride that almost felt like 'normal' again and made me realize how we should actually squeeze our hands with these simple things in life.Thanks to all RCC members present!
May 30, 2021
I met Sven from Cannondale and armed with our two Topstone gravel bikes (one normal, one Lefty) we drove from the parking lot at the Deelerwoud towards Loenermark. Two cool bikes and two well-groomed Rapha men. To put through a ring ;-)Our approach was to play around outside with our bikes, freestyle and see where we would end up. The route therefore has some strange crossings, but in practice it was great for cycling! I also discovered again a number of trails that I had never cycled before ... Proof to everyone that an ugly route on paper can still mean a great day on the bike ;-)
May 28, 2021
Just like many people go to the Veluwe for the beautiful gravel cycling ... someone who lives on the Veluwe sometimes likes to go to other beautiful places to walk his gravel bike.My (re) discovery of the South Limburg gravel sky recently asked for yet another exploration, this time with good friends Bram and Bas (Detour Studio).The result? A beautiful gravel ride through the hills, with enough variety in character as well as climbing and high plains without too much climbing. Two to three mountain bike-esque climbs provide an extra satisfied feeling + underline that a gravel bike gets most MTB work done in the Netherlands and is really a Swiss army knife. Musti's kebab at Maastricht station was a legendary good end to a wonderful day of rolling over grit.
May 16, 2021
A beautiful unpaved route across the middle Veluwe for the gravel bike on a unusually warm spring day in May.The route consists largely of hard forest trails, interspersed with hardpack gravel roads and occasionally short technical challenges such as a natural single track or somewhat sandy path over heath or through the forest. However, it is largely easy to cycle with a gravel bike and takes you to a few beautiful less-visited places within the Royal Domain and beyond. With its secret altimeters and various surfaces, the tour is a great challenging daytime activity.At Uddel, the route has a small loop, created from a spontaneous search for a terrace to avoid a shower. Halfway through and again later, the route calls at Vierhouten, which was perfect today for a fries to go. The finish back at Cannenburgh Castle and several encounters with wild boars and deer made the trip extra special.Pay attention! The route cannot be cycled during the closing of the Kroondomein during the autumn (mid-September to Christmas).
May 10, 2021
- Vincent likes this.
A beautiful unpaved route across the middle Veluwe for the gravel bike from Vaassen on the A1.The route consists largely of hard forest trails, interspersed with hardpack gravel roads and occasionally short technical challenges such as a natural single track or somewhat sandy path over heath or through the forest. However, it is largely easy to cycle with a gravel bike and takes you to a few beautiful less-visited places within the Royal Domain and beyond. With its secret altimeters and various surfaces, the tour is a great challenging daytime activity, making the optional coke and fries stop halfway the route in Vierhouten very welcome for me personally.Pay attention! The route cannot be cycled during the closing of the Kroondomein during the autumn (mid-September to Christmas).Do you cycle or use this route? Then be sure to tag and share me in your adventures!
May 10, 2021
The second day of a wonderful two-day gravel weekend in the Limburg hills. Instead of in a tent or tarp, wake up in a lovely bed in B&B de Smockelaer, just north of the Dutch-Belgian border.After a breakfast and after a kilometer of cycling again on the gravel ... Oh, how beautiful it was! :-)
From grit to gravel and back again. It is enjoyment strip after strip. A small setback with the non-sailing bicycle lap near Eijsden, but this problem is easily solved with the Komoot app and a bridge just south of the border.Around the Albert Canal a few beautiful gravel strips and views, and then stop in Maastricht for a well-deserved cup of coffee and cake at Fixed Gear Coffee ... yes, the bike can be parked here even when you pick it up :-)After Maastricht it remains nicer-prettier-prettiest. One quiet gravel road after another nice climb continues to pleasantly surprise us. You can't get enough of gravel in the hills. Back in the evening sun at the car at the P + R of Schin op Geul station ... exactly where we had left it the day before.
May 2, 2021
The first day of a wonderful two-day gravel weekend in the Limburg hills. I could already dream of many of the paved roads here, but unpaved there was still a lot to discover. The extended King's Day weekend, combined with the wonderful weather, offered the perfect opportunity to go on a two-day gravel pack here. Super deluxe with B&B overnight stay instead of in a tent or tarp.This first day we parked our car at the P + R of Schin op Geul station, near Valkenburg. We soon had the first unpaved climb - the unpaved Keutenberg - for our choosing ... after which many climbs, but especially beautiful quiet gravel roads and beautiful views followed. A sometimes somewhat technical, but generally easy to cycle gravel tour for anyone with a gravel bike.A number of forests of Staatsbosbeheer were found not to allow free cycling, which caused a small necessary detour just across the border in Wallonia. Soon, however, we were in the forest between Camerig and Vaals on the official MTB route of Epen, which is also easy to cycle with a gravel bike.The day ended - after some well-deserved fries in Epen - at B&B de Smockelaer near Heijenrath (see highlight).
April 30, 2021
The NH65 ... of course a nod to the NH100 route of Laurens ten Dam & co. Unfortunately, there was no time for the full distance today. There still had to be socialized in Alkmaar and of course I wanted to be home in time for the final of Liège-Bastogne-Liège ... a nice 65 km should be enough today.The result? A shortened version of the - indeed very beautiful - unpaved route through the North Holland dunes and then back over the beach. I did not ride the most southern loop and the famous MTB route of Schoorl today, but the NH100 route was nevertheless very beautiful. Cycling in the surf of the beach remains a wonderful experience, especially with today's #primastrandje!For the original NH100 route, take a look at Laurens' profile: komoot.nl/collection/901754/-noord-holland-100Practical footnote:
The unpaved paths in the dunes (except for the official MTB route of Schoorl) may only be ridden by bicycle from sunrise to 10.30 am (!). Walkers who checked their watch after my phone call before stepping aside, confirmed to me that this deadline is taken very seriously.
Don't forget to buy your dune pass for € 2 per day to avoid annoying fines.
April 25, 2021