Post by Mary on October 9, 2020
Our first guided Chamonix Briançon trip was a great success this summer. Jamie guided a group of our regular guests across the Alps in August. One of the group members – Paul – has ridden every single trip we’ve ever run over the past 19 years! He thinks the Chamonix Briançon route is up there with the very best of our point-to-point routes.
The trip includes 6 days of spectacular mountain biking through an ever-changing landscape as we cross a series of cols and valleys heading South across the Alps. 100% new trails for Ride the Alps linking the beautiful, historic towns of Chamonix-Mont-Blanc and Briançon. As always Jamie has chosen a route that is off-road as much as possible and that capitalizes on some of the best and lesser-known singletrack in the Alps. Because of this there are some sections of bike-a-hike on 3 of the days in the itinerary but we think the effort is worth it! Chamonix Briançon is 5 days of point-to-point riding with a full day at the end to explore the outstanding trails of the Briançon area. There are so many options to choose from in this fantastic mountain biking playground.
This route has a similar level of technical difficulty as the Tour du Mont Blanc, The Eiger Tour and Chamonix to Zermatt. You need to be an experienced mountain biker with a good enough level of fitness to ride 1000m+ climbs on consecutive days. We do use more lifts and uplifts on this route than on our other point-to-point routes but there’s still plenty of pedaling in between 🙂
Accommodation is a mixture of small hotels and mountain refuges. There is a choice of accommodation in Chamonix and possibly Briançon. The other nights of accommodation are fixed.
This trip is flexible in that we can make the most of the lifts in July and August to save the legs and maximize singletrack playtime or we can ride all/most of the climbs with leg power alone. It can be ridden with full van support for luggage and medical/mechanical assistance where possible or it can be ridden bikepacking style, whereby you carry your own gear for the trip. For the bikepacking option we can arrange for a van and driver to bring your bike bags and excess luggage to Briançon at the end of the trip and then transport you back to Geneva airport.
Our plan is to extend the route all the way down to Nice. The idea being that you could ride two 5-6 day trips, one from Chamonix to Briançon and another from Briançon to Nice. Or you could ride the whole route in 10 days from Chamonix to Nice for a really big mountain bike adventure. Jamie will start planning the route and checking out the trails in Spring 2021. Hopefully by autumn next year we will have the whole route tried and tested and ready for guided groups in 2022.
You can find our new Chamonix Briançon trip on our website. We understand that there is a lot of uncertainty surrounding international travel right now but we are hopeful that the situation will be greatly improved by summer 2021. In dark times it’s always good to have an adventure to look forward to. Email Mary if you have any questions about the trip.
Happy October everyone!