With around 650m of climbing and this ride sees us circumvent La Tournette in the Bornes Massif via the Col du Marais and the Col de Bluffy. Standing at 2,351m La Tournette is the highest peak surrounding Lake Annecy.
We start the day in Ugine with a gentle 10km pedal to Saint-Ferréol and the foot of the Marais. At 10.2km in length, the col presents more of a challenge than its 3.8% average gradient may suggest! The first 4-5kms are most challenging with an average pitch of 5-6%, before levelling off and heading downhill for 1.4km. Catch your breath though as the short climb to Serraval is the steepest section. From here the last few km's are gentle as we push on to Le Marais and the top of the col. Once over the top, we enjoy the 8km descent to Thônes and a bite of lunch.
Refuelled we push onwards through Alex and onto the Col de Bluffy. This punchy climb is short but sweet and we are quickly at the top. From here we are rewarded with the most incredible view of Lake Annecy and Menthon-St-Bernard and it's castle below.
It's a short, quite steep descent to Menthon-St-Bernard from where we turn eastward to join the water's edge and head back to Ugine and homewards to Moûtiers.
Key climb - Col du Marais
Length of climb: 10.2km
Start altitude: 514m
Summit altitude: 833m
Elevation gain: 319
Average gradient: 3.8%
Max gradient: 6%