Gorges des Gats, a balcony road in France
Gorges des Gats is an incredible canyon located in the Drôme department in southeastern France. The gorge is carved by the Ruisseau des Gats river. It’s one of the famous French balcony roads.
This real gem of a discovery is traversed by the D539, a small asphalted narrow road which enters the sunless trench of the Gorges des Gats. It’s 10.2 km long and links the towns of Châtillon-en-Diois and Glandage. This amazing road is carved into the mountainside. It’s a road to die for (or die on, if you're not careful!) with 15 rock tunnels. The road is known as Route Joseph Reynaud. It was opened on 25th September 1910. It’s normal for your palms to sweat looking at those photos, imagine what it must have been like before the barriers. There are 5 unlit tunnels along the road. It runs as a single track road along the mountainside for some distance with nowhere to pass another vehicle. Here one says a prayer that nobody is coming towards you until the road widens some kilometres further. The gorge is famous for its bewildering network of subterranean caves, a few of which are open to the public.
This road is one of the most famous balcony roads in the country. A balcony road is a hair-raising lane cut into the sides of sheer cliffs. It’s a kind of road not for those who fear heights. There is little room for error on these roads. Drive with care as this is a mountain road with hairpin curves and narrow unlit tunnels. When you take this road as picturesque as it is narrow, with its many suprising meanders, drive carefully, and above all don't miss the parking spaces that have been provided.