I met up this weekend with the boys from St. Etienne for the Ventoux Night Sessions. As a pre middle-of-the-night ride we cycled this 76 kilometre route – primarily through the magnificent Les Gorges de la Nesque.
We started in Bédoin at the start of the classic way up Mont Ventoux. But you could shorten the route by starting at the entrance to Les Gorges de la Nesque at Villes-Sur-Auzon. From the village, it is well signed.
For cyclostourists looking for an easier climb than Ventoux, the route through the Gorges is about 20 kms long, never steep, averaging less than 3%. It’s a fabulous cliff road, beside a deep canyon that makes up the Réserve du Biosphère du Mont Ventoux.
I’d never cycled the second half of the the loop. The not-steep descent lasted 17 kms or so and passed through a less spectacular but still pretty great secondary section of the Les Gorges.
While Mont Ventoux is the highlight of this region for cyclists, Les Gorges de la Nesque is second on my list.