Check out our ride profiles for this trip, although please be aware that the itineraries are subject to change depending on local weather conditions or road closures/maintenance.
Saturday 12th Sept 2020 - Welcome and set up ride
Your transfer will depart Geneva Airport mid afternoon and deliver you and your bikes to our base, Chalet James in La Tania (approx 2 hours).
Our friendly team will help you settle in, and you can enjoy a welcome drink and light refreshments before setting the bikes up. Once we’re set up, we’ll give the bikes (and ourselves!) a warm up and equipment test on the winding road up to Courchevel 1850. From here we’ll return to Chalet James, prepped and ready for the week ahead.
Sunday 13th Sept 2020 - La Tania-Pralognan Loop
A nice warm up for the rest of the week, we'll set off from La Tania with a support vehicle in tow on a meandering tour of the local area, skirting the edge of the Vanoise National Park. We enjoy fantastic, quiet roads and stunning views looking back over to Courchevel as we make our way up to the lovely village ski station of Pralognan La Vanoise, via the balcony road through Montagny. This road has actually been used in the Criterium du Dauphine twice now and many pro’s use it for training. There will be plenty of time to take in the views and enjoy a lunch and a coffee in one of many mountain restaurants before returning to La Tania via Courchevel Le Praz for well earned afternoon tea.
(Does your GPS sometimes have a moment? Ours did with this one and added 400m climb to the graph total; we wouldn't do that to you on the first day!)
Monday 14th Sept 2020 - Col du Petit St Bernard
A short 45 min transfer in the support vehicle will take us to today’s starting point; the riverside town of Aime. From here we’ll warm up with a spin along the river path to Bourg St Maurice. Bourg is considered the gateway to the Petit St Bernard and the Cormet de Roseland and regularly features in the Tour de France.
We’ll pass through Bourg and the little village of Seez before heading onto the Col du Petit St Bernard for the 22km cycle to La Rosiere, support vehicle in tow. It's a beautiful climb with a steady gradient, but at 30km, a decent distance. In our opinion, the views on the last leg of the climb are amongst the best in the Alps. At the last km passing the impressive St Bernard Statue and the hospice. There is plenty of time to stop for a coffee in either France or Italy! It's a must do climb and an experience not to be missed, as is the descent. Finishing in Aime we’ll transfer back to La Tania. Of course, if you still have it in your legs you are always welcome to cycle back up to the chalet!
Tuesday 15th Sept 2020
Tour Day 1 - La Tour de Pin - Villard-de-lans stage 16
We start the day with a drive to Le Touvet on the edge of the Parc Naturel Régional du Massif de Chartreuse.
Jumping on the bikes we head up and over the Col de Marcieu to La Tarrasse. From here it's up again on the spectacular but punchy balcony road, the crowds and atmosphere building.
Passing through Brevardiare and pushing on up the Col de la Porte.
The riders will have covered an undulating 47.5km by the time they reach Saint-Laurent-du-Pont, sitting at 406m and face their biggest test of the day. The next 20km will see them climb just under 1000m to the peak of the Col du la Porte.
It’s from here we’ll take in the sights and sounds and watch the riders go by.
Crossing the top they drop sharply down to Meylan before pressing on a further 84km to Villard-de-lans and the stage finish.
When the circus has passed, it is back on the bikes for us to follow them down the descent to Meylan and re-join the van.
Ignore the ascent gain below, our GPS was a little generous with this one!
Wednesday 16th Sept 2020 - Tour Day 2 - Grenoble -Col de La Loze (Meribel) stage 17
Ben, our support cyclist is like a kid at Christmas - the Tour is in Meribel.
We have so many choices for you on this day and we’ll help you decide! One option is to start the day with the descent to Brides Les bains from La Tania to the foot of the climb the riders will be tackling just hours later. Up through Les Allues and push on through Meribel onto the shiny new tarmac of the Col de Loze. We ascend as far as we wish on the ribbon of tarmac, that in winter lies under the slopes of perhaps one of the most famous ski resorts in the world until we find that perfect viewing spot. From here we cheer on the riders up and over the Col that will be the roof of the ‘Le Tour’ 2020. Once the spectacle and madness that is the Tour de France has passed we head down to either Meribel or Courchevel, which ever takes our fancy or is passable to enjoy a bite to eat and the unique atmosphere!
The route below takes us to the top of the Loze, of course we'll still have the ride home to enjoy!
Thursday 17th Sept 2020 -
Tour Day 3 - Meribel to La Roche-sur-foron stage 18
Day 5 and the chance to see the best in the world and ourselves take on a classic high mountain pass, Cormet de Roselend. An incredible climb that has been in the Tour 12 times. Cancelled last year due to bad weather it is back in this year which gives us this incredible opportunity to watch it come past. Fingers crossed its not unlucky 13 this time around.
The day starts with a short transfer to Aime and an easy spin along the river to Bourg.
The hustle and bustle that greets us in Bourg today will be very different from Monday and we feed of the energy as we dive straight on to the Cormet and the climbing.
We’ll head up through the normally peaceful small villages which will be buzzing with activity, into the forest and onto the switchbacks.
We’ll get settled in on a good spot on this 20km stretch from Bourg to the peak to watch the pro’s and see how it should be done.
Once the riders and circus have passed, it's time for us, newly inspired to follow on the back wheel of the greats to the top of the Col and the stunnings views of the lake that await.
With the lake behind us, we then begin the epic descent, a drop of over 1200m to Beaufort, and the chance to enjoy a famous Beaufort tart for those who wish.
Bellies full, it's a steady 20km to Albertville and the awaiting van. Of course if you have the legs Moutiers and La Tania are just up the road!
Friday - It's the final day and we let you decide! Usually on our week programme we set aside a day mid-week for you to rest your legs and enjoy one of the many relaxing mountain past times La Tania has to offer. Or, if you wish, spin them out on a local, self-guided ride. But this is Tour de France week, so we want to give you more! The tour may have moved on but we bet your appetite for one more day in the saddle hasn't! You can always go home tomorrow and sit in an ice bath for a week if needs be. So if you want to rest up great, but if you don't, we are good to go. We haven't even set tyres on classics like the Col de Madeleine, Alp d’Huez, the Glandon, the Telegraph, the stunning Lacets du Montvernier or the Bagures Mountains and lake Annecy!
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