THE DEAD TREE LOOP. WE WISH THAT SOME COOL KIDS START TO CALL IT:

„THE DTL“

IT IS A BIKEPACKING ROUTE IN THE HEART OF THE BERGISCHE LAND.

SOME FACTS:

TOTAL DISTANCE:

194 KM

TOTAL ASCENT:

3500 M

TIME:

2 DAYS

UNPAVED:

60 %

SINGETRAIL:

3 %

BIKE:

GRAVEL / HARDTAIL

RIDE FROM:

EARLY MAY – END SEPTEMBER

RESUPPLY (WATER, FOOD…):

EASY – EVERY FEW MILES

THE ROUTE IS DESIGNED AS A CHALLENGING OVERNIGHTER, STARTING AND ENDING IN COLOGNE, GERMANY. THE FIRST 30 KM LEAD YOU AWAY FROM THE CITY, PASSING BY LEVERKUSEN AND SOME SMALLER VILLAGES ALONG THE WAY. ENTERING THE BERGISCHE LAND, YOU’LL ENJOY A BEAUTIFUL RIDE SIDE BY SIDE WITH THE WUPPER RIVER, HEADING TOWARDS THE FIRST SECTION WITH SOME SERIOUS CLIMBING.

SEE IT? ON TOP OF THE HILL? IT’S THE SCHLOSS BURG, AND GUESS WHERE WE’RE GOING? RIGHT! SEE YOU UP THERE. THIS WILL BE THE BEGINNING OF A 10-KILOMETER STRETCH WITH LOTS OF CLIMBS. THE FIRST 3 KILOMETERS WILL BE MORE OR LESS PAVED. THE REST… BUT! IF YOU WANT TO, YOU CAN ALSO TAKE A RIDE WITH THE CABLE CAR TO SCHLOSS BURG! ­čśë

UP AND DOWN ÔÇô UP AND DOWN. THAT SOUNDS PRETTY FAMILIAR TO EVERYONE WHO HAS RIDDEN THROUGH THE BERGISCHE LAND ON TWO WHEELS BEFORE. YOU’LL PASS BY SOME HUGE WATER RESERVOIRS AND BARRAGES, PLENTY OF TINY LITTLE TRAILS THROUGH SOME MAJESTIC FORESTS, TWO-TRACK DIRT ROADS, AND SINGLE-TRACK MADNESS.

AS THE ROAD IS CONSTANTLY UP AND DOWN, AND MOST OF THE „UP“ IS OFF-ROAD, THE DTL IS QUITE CHALLENGING AT SOME POINTS. SOME SUPER STEEP GRADES WILL CATCH YOU OFF GUARD FROM TIME TO TIME. PUSHING YOUR BIKE UP A HILL WILL BE HARD TO AVOID, BUT THAT’S OKAY. ENJOY THE NATURE WHILE TRAVELING SLOW. PACK LIGHT!

BY THE WAY, WE RECOMMEND USING A BIKE THAT CAN HANDLE DIRT AND GRAVEL ROADS. YOU SHOULD RIDE WITH AT LEAST 40MM TIRES WITH A GOOD OFF-ROAD PROFILE. THE BIGGER, THE BETTER. A GRAVEL BIKE SHOULD DO THE JOB JUST FINE, BUT A HARDTAIL MTB WILL GIVE YOU MORE CONFIDENCE AND EXTRA FUN WHEN RIDING THE OFF-ROAD SECTIONS. ANYWAY, RIDE WHATEVER YOU WANT AS LONG AS IT’S SAFE.

YOU MAY HAVE RECOGNIZED WHERE THIS TRAIL GOT ITS NAME FROM. DEAD TREES. THEY’RE EVERYWHERE. THE REGION AND THE TREES ARE LOSING THE BATTLE AGAINST THE BARK BEETLE. GLOBAL WARMING AND THE POOR WORK OF THE GOVERNMENT AND FOREST MANAGEMENT INDUSTRY ARE RESULTING IN THIS HUGE MASS DYING OF THE MONOCULTURES. THIS TRAIL WITNESSES WHAT HUMAN MISBEHAVIOR CAN CAUSE IN TERMS OF ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AND WILL CONTINUE TO CAUSE IF WE DO NOT DRASTICALLY CHANGE OUR WAY OF LIFE.

ESPECIALLY THE SECOND HALF OF THE TRACK WILL SHOW AN INCREASED NUMBER OF DEAD TREES AND HUGE GRAY AREAS. IN A STRANGE WAY, IT HAS GOT ITS BEAUTY.

THE BERGISCHE LAND IS KNOWN FOR ITS HIGH-QUALITY DRINKING WATER WELLS, SO HAVING A WATER FILTRATION SYSTEM WITH YOU IS A GREAT IDEA. NOT ONLY WILL IT ENSURE THAT YOU HAVE ACCESS TO CLEAN AND SAFE DRINKING WATER THROUGHOUT YOUR RIDE, BUT IT WILL ALSO ALLOW YOU TO REFILL YOUR WATER BOTTLES AT THE WATER SOURCES ALONG THE WAY. JUST BE SURE TO FOLLOW ANY GUIDELINES OR REGULATIONS REGARDING WATER USAGE IN THE AREA, AND ALWAYS BE MINDFUL OF LEAVING NO TRACE BEHIND.

AFTER TWO GREAT DAYS IN THE BERGISCHE LAND, SHORTLY AFTER OVERATH, YOU WILL ENTER THE K├ľNIGSFORST, THE LAST BIT OF NATURE BEFORE ENTERING THE CHAOTIC CITY LIFE OF COLOGNE. BUT BEFORE THAT, YOU WILL HAVE THE HONOR TO CLIMB THE MONTE TROODEL├ľH, THE HIGHEST MOUNTAIN IN COLOGNE!

WELCOME BACK! WE HOPE YOU HAVE HAD A GOOD TIME.

┬ę 2023 LOVETRAILS ÔÇô BIKEPACKING ADVENTURES