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touring france famous TDF summits?

Old 02-19-21, 08:27 AM
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touring france famous TDF summits?

Has anyone scouted a touring route that includes the famous Tour De France summits? Alpe D'huez, Mont Ventoux, etc? or knows where to find an itinerary that would include those?
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Old 02-19-21, 10:42 AM
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I made this trip one year starting and finishing in Geneva. Maybe not the exact same roads but the same order of passes. Just buy the 1/200,000 Michelin maps and connect the dots using the smallest D roads ...

On the way back north I made a day trip over and around Ventoux staying at a campground at Montbrun-les-Bains ...

Last edited by BobG; 02-21-21 at 09:56 AM. Reason: add Col des Saisies
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Old 02-19-21, 10:51 AM
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Originally Posted by jpjuggler
Has anyone scouted a touring route that includes the famous Tour De France summits? Alpe D'huez, Mont Ventoux, etc? or knows where to find an itinerary that would include those?
Check out this year's L'Etape sportive route.


(I was signed up to do it last year, but decided on a refund instead of doing it this year if it goes ahead. No fitness and too much hassle, not to mention being completely reckless and irresponsible if they do run the event.)
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Old 02-19-21, 02:39 PM
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It's easy to put together your own touring route. France is blessed with 2 great map sources, IGN (Institut Geographique National) & Michelin. My own preference is for the IGN 1:100,000 series, but Michelin maps are certainly more than adequate for creating your own route.

I've climbed Mont Ventoux, Col du Tourmalet, & Alpe d'Huez, all on my Bike Friday folder. Alpe d'Huez was by far the most difficult. Frankly, I did not enjoy that one, though the scenery was very nice. The gradient changes constantly and the very beginning is one of the steepest parts, which I found very discouraging. Mont Ventoux was fairly easy starting from Sault (the easiest of the 3 possible places to begin the climb), except for the last 4 or 6 kilometers. The Tourmalet was long but had nice scenery and a fantastic downhill that went on and on, all the way to Lourdes. I rode it east to west. I had panniers and there were a few hundred riders on a beautiful Saturday morning in late May when I rode up Mont Ventoux. I didn't see anyone else with panniers. A French guy on a road bike, noting my panniers, asked me jokingly if I was taking performance enhancing drugs.
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Old 02-19-21, 03:23 PM
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Originally Posted by axolotl
. A French guy on a road bike, noting my panniers, asked me jokingly if I was taking performance enhancing drugs.
I had a similar experience riding the Tourmalet on a Saturday. Just starting the climb (West to east) I was overtaken by a group of roadies, one of whom shouted "jetez les sacs" (throw away the bags) to the great amusement of his companions.

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Old 02-19-21, 04:29 PM
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well mr juggler, you know that if this is a dream to ride these places, do it. One day we'll all be dead and buried, so do stuff while you're still breathing and physically able to.

The Pyrenees is an awesomely cool place to ride, so while I can't give you a gpx file, look around on ye 'ol Googles and you'll find route ideas pretty easily.
I've ridden in France a bunch of times and as others have said, you look at D roads and you can have great riding most places, but with the Pyrenees and other climbs you should easily find ideas online.

Some of my fondest memories are Pyrenees climbs and descents. I love descents and a lot of them were funner than heck.
You'll want to look into the gearing details of that Kuwa compared to the LHT though, count the no of teeth on cassette and chainrings and get black and white numbers, use an online gear calculator to get the gear inch range of both bikes, so you know what you're dealing with gearing wise. Thats what I meant by looking at the gearing of both bikes.

Last edited by djb; 02-19-21 at 04:34 PM.
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Old 02-21-21, 09:44 AM
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Wow this would be amazing tour! You have just made me dream of this journey.
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Old 02-21-21, 02:57 PM
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Cols are included in the ToF because 1) they are challenging and 2) you can get ~200 cyclists, 40-50 vehicles & thousands of fans up and down them.

There are some stellar mountain roads in the Alps & Pyrenees that have never seen the grand tour peloton because they fail requirement #2. Wonderful riding - but no bragging rights back home.

Doh! smacks forehead There are - or were before COVID - some commercial tour outfits that offered fully supported col tours. No connection, not an endorsement, just remembered seeing these cats' ad.


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Old 02-23-21, 03:44 AM
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This is a famous and a very tough one: les 100 cols. Start from there and skip a few cols maybe...
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