French Alps rides?

Questions about bike hire abroad and everything light bike related. No off-topic chat please

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lukey muffler
Posts: 77
Joined: Fri Nov 21, 2008 3:11 am
Location: Sydney, Australia

by lukey muffler

thencameyou - what sort of km's are you looking at covering in a day?

It's hard to loop many of the big climbs together unless you're keen for epic days. You can throw in one of the ski station climbs (Luz Ardiden, Hautacam, some other dead end roads towards Spanish border, Pont d'Espagne etc) after a big 'icon' loop however, and that definitely makes for a solid day. Throw Hautacam in after a Tourmalet loop for example and your legs will know about it!

One of my fav rides down there is the Soulor from Ferrieres (so it'd be a bit of a ride for you to that point). From Soulor you can duck across to the Aubisque which is a spectacular stretch of road. Then back across to Soulor and down into Argeles. This would be 110-120km. The Soulor side starting from Argeles does not excite me so much.

Check out the baronnies (east of Bagnerres di Bigorre) - awesome riding. Small-medium cols, dead quiet roads.. superb. Can use them to link to Arreau to start Col d'aspin from that side.

You might need a new thread!

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Joined: Fri Mar 11, 2011 11:33 am
Location: Asti, ITALIA

by pastronef

I was looking on ridewithgps for some backup parcours if the Col de la Bonette gets bad weather for next year Giro d´Italia

looking around I saw Col d´Allos (I knew that) and together with that, a loop including Col de la Cayolle and Col des Champs (all 3 between 2000 and 2300 meters)
a 115 km loop

I remember someone already mentioned that loop. Alpes de Haute Provence and Alpes Maritimes. wild and barren.

must try it next summer

by Weenie

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Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 8:51 pm
Location: France

by maquisard

Yeah, absolutely amazing scenery. You could do a fantastic loop over the Cayolle, Champs, Allos and finishing up Pra-Loup!

The view in June...

Last edited by maquisard on Wed Oct 07, 2015 8:43 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Joined: Fri Mar 11, 2011 11:33 am
Location: Asti, ITALIA

by pastronef

thank you, I will get there next summer. living near Torino it is not that far.

115 km loop is enough, I won't go up to Pra Loup after 3 cols over 2000 meters :mrgreen:

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Joined: Wed Dec 15, 2004 10:54 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia

by Dalai

Hi Pastronef! Whilst on the trip in 2011 that we rode together over the Col du Petit St Bernard I also rode a couple of loops around Barcelonette.

183km loop over the Cime de la Bonette, Col de la Lombarde and Colle della Maddalena ... e-8th.html

120km loop over the Col de la Cayolle 2326m, the Col des Champs 2080m, and the Col d’Allos 2250m ... ember.html

Given how rough the descent was down off the Col des Champs heading towards the Col d’Allos, I’d be inclined to recommend this loop in reverse. The Col d’Allos from Barcelonnette looked worthwhile, the other side to the Col des Champs is a good road so the descent would be better that way and the climb up the Col de la Cayolle looked nice as well.

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Location: Aix en Provence

by LionelB

"Les 3 cols" loop is one of the best there is.

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Joined: Fri Mar 11, 2011 11:33 am
Location: Asti, ITALIA

by pastronef

thanks Dalai! I knew I read about the 3 cols loop somewhere... it was your blog.

I asked and the col de Champs west side is still in quite bad conditions.

surely must go anti clock wise in they dont fix it before the end of next summer

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