Dates: 11 to 18 June 2022
€2 ,480.00 – €2 ,830.00
YES: if you want to learn to cycle faster in the mountains.
YES: if you want to make friends and have fun with other like-minded people.
YES: if you want to stay in a comfortable 4* hotel, with outstanding food.
NO: if you are a beginner cyclist or you do not like cycling up hills.
NO: if you prefer low cost accommodation and cheap & cheerful food.
|Date||Coaching Focus||Climbs||Distance & Elevation|
|Sun||Core Skills||Col de la Forclaz, Col de l'Epine, Col de la Croix-Fry||91km / 2,300m+|
|Mon||Climbing||Col des Glières, Col des Fleuries||77km / 1,750m+|
|Tue||Descending||Col des Aravis, col de la Croix-Fry, col du Plan Bois (option)||50km / 1,600m+ (or 68km / 2,300m+)|
|Wed||Climbing||Col de la Loze||23km / 1,700m+|
|Thu||Pacing||Col des Aravis, col de la Colombière||97km / 2,350m+|
|Fri||Group Riding||Col du Marais, col de l'Arpettaz, col des Aravis||92km / 2,450m+|
You will be picked up at Geneva airport and taken to the Hotel Beauregard in La Clusaz. La Clusaz is 69 km from the airport and the transfer will take around 1 hour and 15 minutes. There will be only one transfer, but we can organise a taxi if you arrive at a different time.
The camp begins with a welcome drink and briefing at 18:30, followed by dinner with the coaches and other riders.
We begin the week with a classic local ride, the Tour de la Tournette, during which the coaches observe your basic bike-handling, cornering and climbing skills. After descending to Thônes we take a very quiet road to the (easy) col de Bluffy, before continuing to the spectacular col de la Forclaz. From here there are stunning views across Lake Annecy and the Massif des Bauges. We descend all the way to the valley floor and a few km of flat before the charming col de l’Epine. The return to La Clusaz is via the col de la Croix-Fry. Less than 12km, this is nevertheless a tough climb that must be treated with respect. Throughout the ride, we pay close attention to your pacing to ensure you stay at the right level for a long endurance ride.
Today we begin with the short but steep climb to the Plateau de Glières, first used by the Tour de France in 2018. There’s a short gravel section over the top before a long descent. The coaching focus is on climbing technique and pacing. We look at your seated pedalling technique and how it varies between the moderate and steep pitches, and we look at your standing technique to help you “dance” on the pedals like a pro. The second climb, to the col des Fleuries, is much easier and will allow us to contrast climbing techniques between climbs of different gradients. We return to La Clusaz up the beautiful Gorges du Borne, in time for one of the Beauregard’s excellent buffet lunches.
Descending is a crucial skill to master if you are going to ride in the mountains. Our goal today is to help you make a big improvement in your ability to descend confidently. We begin by warming up on the 6 km climb to the col des Aravis., where we organise a descending clinic. Each rider has the opportunity to descend multiple times with a coach and to be videoed multiple times. This enables us to provide immediate feedback, and the video allows you to observe your own technique. We then back-track to the col de la Croix-Fry and let you loose for an uphill time trial, finishing with a well-earned coffee at the summit café. From there, it is a short descent home for lunch!
The col de la Loze is a newly paved road connecting Méribel to Courchevel. It gained instant fame in the 2020 Tour de France and is sure to become a regular on the Tour in the next few years. We will take a minibus ride from La Clusaz to Brides-les-Bains, and climb to the col de la Loze after warming up along the valley floor. The climb is fairly straightforward until Méribel. From that point it is anything but! The gradient changes wildly and includes several sections at 20% and above. Without doubt, it is the most challenging climb used by the Tour de France: you can feel justly proud once you reach the summit. We will lunch in the area before driving back to La Clusaz.
This is a highlight of the week: the Tour des Aravis, including the mighty Colombière, from the tough side of course! The ride begins by the climb to the col des Aravis and the descent to Flumet, where we turn left and go through the famous ski-station of Megève. Descending from Megève we enjoy stunning views of Mont Blanc before the flat ride out along the valley floor to Cluses, where we will regroup and refuel before tackling the Colombière. The climb is 16 km long, rising 1,100m. There’s an easy bit in the middle at Reposoir, and the hardest bit is at the end. Your reward is a delicious blueberry tart in the summit café! There’s a tough option for the brave: add the col de Romme!
Another stunning ride, the Tour du Mont Charvin takes us first down to Thônes, over the col du Marais and along the valley to Ugine. From here we climb the remarkable col de l’Arpettaz, with its 49 hairpin bends. Many of these are in a shady beech forest before reaching the high alpine pastures. There’s a refuge on top for a coffee and cake before the precipitous descent to the balcony road to Flumet. We finish the ride by coming back over the col des Aravis from the south side, to close the loop on an exceptional circuit.
Transfer to Geneva airport
We loved the Beauregard at first sight and have brought hundreds of guests here over the past five years.
Built in traditional Alpine wood and stone and tastefully decorated throughout, it is set on a slight rise and nestled in a copse of trees, giving it a secluded and exclusive feel. The rooms are cosy, luxurious and comfortable. There is a spa with hot tub, sauna and indoor swimming pool.
The staff are lovely people, warm and welcoming, and thoroughly understand the needs of cyclists.
The “Symphonie” restaurant is a real high point, offering excellent food that is great for hungry cyclists. The chef is very flexible and is always ready to cater to specific needs and requests. He also knows how important it is to start the day with an excellent breakfast!
The hotel is rated “Excellent” (4.5) on TripAdvisor and 88% on Booking.com in over 2000 reviews.
Feedback from our own guests has always been overwhelmingly positive. This is a great place to be on holiday!
I had a great time with you guys. Your organisation of everything but turning the pedals was absolutely spot on. My riding improved lots! (Steve, UK)
This is a MUST experience for every cyclist. The things that stand out for me are your team’s attention to detail – 5 Star personal service (Robbie, Switzerland)
It was so clear you were prepared to do “whatever it takes” with a smile on your face to make our experience special. Felt like I was on a tour team!!! (Scott, Canada)
The experience with Alpine Cols was excellent. I have done several cycling camps, and I must say this one was close to perfection. (Stephanie, France)
Thank you for the photos and a great week. The organisation, on road support, the hotel and all other aspects were great. I really did enjoy myself and despite my nerves and the weather I will definitely go another alpine cycling holiday. (Diana, UK)
Thanks very much to you and Emmanuelle for hosting a delightful event. Great hotel; superb logistics; you assembled a terrific group of people; and the two of you made it all appear effortless. (Richard, UK)
From Sat 11 June to Sat 18 June (7 nights)