• I will be doing a week in Annecy In July, before a week in Les Contamines Montjoie. Annecy routes advice would be great!

    There is a mixed surface ride we plan to do over 2 days with my partner from Contamines to Bourg St Maurice. The area around Beaufort/Hautluce that you appear to have on one of your routes is lovely and quiet, with stunning views and decent (but not mega) climbs. If you go that way, I believe Col Du Joly is fully metalled - there is a restaurant at the top with views of Mont Blanc. There is a climb next to Lac de Roselend which looks fun.

    One thing to be aware of is that area is seemingly busy in summer with people walking the Tour du Mont Blanc, so refuges etc are already mostly booked.

  • Any recommendations for a good base in the Alps (French or Italian side) that would be easy day to day for babies and toddler, whilst also giving good easy access to some big climbs (tarmac and or gravel)? Cheers.

  • Briancon. Proper town with good access

  • yup or as previously stated Annecy. A big enough town for partner and children to stay happy during the day with a beachfront type vibe around the lake and plenty of local climbs to ride including at least two etape routes that started or finished there during the last decade



  • Does anyone know where the premium gravel climbs are?

  • Been so close to it 3 times on the bike NEVER rode up, excellent plan

    I’ll remind you of these words after you’ve done it. But it is a wonderful climb

  • It certainly is. Cycliste and I did it during TPBR in 2019, having only driven up it before.

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  • The day we did it was a scorcher, during a heatwave in mid June. Half the group had to bow out due to heat related sickness issues.

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  • It's a tough one in the heat as you start from about 500 metres above sea level, so you've a lot of climbing to do before you begin to get any benefit from the drop in temperature as the altitude increases.

  • Eurostar is taking bikes to Paris from June

  • I've only just come across this thread. I don't know if my own experience will be useful but last year me and my friend Soft Gerald had a wonderful week cycling around in the mountains. We rented an e-tandem in Bourg Saint-Maurice (we only started there because it reminded Gerald of his old sparring partner Maurice 'twice nightly' Penfold) and took in most of the local climbs. I can't remember all their names now but they are on the map. I know one was the Col de L'homme Magnifique because we had quite the giggle about it.
    Anyway my advice would be to pack a nice lunch - the French, if you don't already know, are quite the dab hand with bread - and almost every village has it's own water fountain where the local toughs hang about and add an air of erotic menace to the day.
    If you get the chance do pop in to Elton John's Adult Soft Play centre in Huez, right at the foot of the famous climb. You can't miss it.
    I hope this helps.

  • thank you Will; helpful :)

    We have decided and bought tickets for Lille to Valence then around 600-700k over 7 days and train back from Lyon to Lille where I'd park the car. Eurotunnel home.

    Excited for Vercors. I think we are also doing CdF, Galibier and some stuff in Chartreuse; I am not the routes guy.

  • @ WillMelling here is a pic of @pastry_bot. filling his bidon from a fountain I think somewhere near Viuz-la-Chiésaz

    and @Jameo

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  • I've just made this route Vienna to Annecy. Austria seems flatter than I expected


  • I've just made this route Vienna to Annecy. Austria seems flatter than I expected

    Look back on that post when you've made it to the top of Grossglockener.

    Nice route though. Grossglockener, Stelvio and Simplon is a nice combo, and the Centovalli is mighty purdy.

    P.S. Might as well do a quick lap of the Sella Ronda while you're in the area. It'll mean doing Campolongo and Pordoi twice, but they're worth it...

  • Anyone done the three routes up Ventoux in a day ? Worth c0nsidering ?

  • The Club des Cinglés du Ventoux route? Yep, did it a few years ago. Definitely worth doing.

    At the risk of stating the bleeding obvious, it's a long day in the saddle. We started reasonably early (well, soon after breakfast at the hotel) and it was pretty dark by the time we finished.

  • That's been on my todo list for ages. Never get near the place though. Stupid isolated hills.

    One day.

  • Good to hear it is worth doing, will help me put the work in to be ready for it.

    Going to be based near Bedoin for a couple of weeks in July so seems rude not to if time allows.

  • It's a great thing to tick off, and actually an enjoyable ride! Did it about 10 years ago - wow time flies.

    15 years ago I was a student in Annecy, and while I did a bit of riding around the lake and up to Semnoz and Forclaz, my memory falters. We'll be there for one day in June and planning a loop of the lake, any tips or pointers from those with more recent experience? Also bars for a post ride beer?!

    After that we'll be down in the Verdons, and I'm thinking of riding a Gorges du Verdon loop on the road, and also trying to explore some of the premium-looking gravel I can spy on Google earth...again, if anyone has any top tips for cycling or other info around there (we're in a campsite but will go in to Moustiers Sainte Marie to eat one time, other recommendations welcome)

    And yes ok, these are not strictly the high mountains, more the rolling foothills. Cheers!

  • On the topic of high mountains, has anyone on here done Pico de Veleta? Fancy having a go at it, probably next summer.

  • Just seen this thread.
    Trains: Lille to Valence works, but for less hassle all round I'd just go Eurostar London-Paris, then it's two stops on the RER from Gard du Nord to Gare de Lyon (direct), then train TGV from Gare de Lyon to Valence. An hour between your train arriving GdN and the one leaving GdL is plenty. And I think trains from Lille only go to Valence TGV (which is 10km outside Valence). There are two stations, Valence TGV (2hrs10mins from Paris) and Valence Ville (2hrs 35mins from Paris). Most TGVs these days go to Valence TGV, but from Gare de Lyon there are a few each day which go to Valence Ville.

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Cycling in the high mountains. Alps, Dolomites, Pyranees etc

Posted by Avatar for amey @amey