A Challenge – La Grand Bo Cyclosportif June 29th


OK – due to injuries, crashes, beer and laziness I haven’t signed up for many events.

Next week, I will ride the Montagnard route of the Cycletour du Léman – hopefully with Slogfester. But with the upcoming July Tour d’Enfer, we need to do more. So:

A CHALLENGE to Martin, Barry, Eric (and anyone else).

Col de la Croix Fry - Cropped

Come join me on June 29th for La Grand Bo cyclosportif from Le Grand-Bornand. I have registered for the 125 km (78 miles) route with about 2500 metres (+8000 feet) ascent.

It looks like a pretty nice route with 2 big climbs: First the Col de la Croix Fry (photo) from the easier La Clusaz side and a big finish up the Classic North-East side of Col de la Colombiere (where I watched the 2007 Tour de France).

In between are a couple of smaller climbs: Col des Fleuries and Mont Saxonnet.

So, anyone joining me?

Official Site
(online registration possible):

Paper Registration Form


Note: The route is roughly correct on map below – but I am guessing on the roads between Dingy and Mont Saxonnet.

View Larger Map


About Author

Happiest while cycling uphill.


  1. Looks like a great route Will. If I were to join you it would only be for the first 5 minutes of the ride as I would be quickly shot out the back 🙂

  2. Will, with the Col de la Colombiere as the final fireworks this tour is not to be underestimated. On June 29th I’m supposed to ride with Katy-turbo over the Col de la Bonette followed by the Col St Martin on our trip down south. I’m afraid that combining this with the “Grand-Bo” may be a bit too much :-). ‘m looking forward though to looking quite a few miles extra with you once I’m back in Switzerland.
    PS : How’s the nose/shoulder/ribs?

  3. Eric,

    Climbing the highest road in France on a tandem is a pretty good excuse to not join me 🙂

    Nose and shoulder are doing well. Ribs are pretty awful. But I did return to the crash site yesterday with Martin and avoid falling (to keep my courage up)

  4. Hi Will. Great site. I’ve been reading it for several months now. I’m flying to France from New Zealand in 2 weeks time for 3 weeks of riding. Do you have any accomodation suggestions / links in the Saint-Michel-de-Maurienne area?

  5. James,

    Although at the bottom of a lot of great cycling, it’s a bit more of a working town than a tourist village and the entire valley is a bit more geared to lumber than tourism.

    All the nearby towns down low St-Jean-de-Maurienne, La Chambre, etc are similar.

    This links to a couple of hotels and some gites (B&Bs) in town though.


    An idea is to stay higher in one of the ski resorts. For example La Toussuire was in the 2007 Tour de France. it would be only a slight detour before climbing the North side of Croix de Fer (2008 Tour de France).

    Its english language web site in English is “badly” labeled “Land of Welcome of Cycling” 🙂


    If your Tour includes Galibier – Valloire is very nice village- part way up.

    I am no expert in the area, so you will likely get better recommendations elsewhere

    Hope that helps a little

  6. Will, I am soooo going to move to this part of the world to have climbs like this in my backyard….

  7. NICE… I like the challenge. I need to you to really make sure Leslie rides hard in the Tour d’Enfer. 🙂
    I have signed up for a ride (with Leslie and others) called the Cheat Mountain Challenge in West Virginia. It’s107 miles and 10,000 plus feet of climbing. You want to fly over and join us? Leslie has lined up about six of us for the event. Best on your ride there… it’s sounds awesome. I’m sure despite the nose, laziness and beer you will do really well! I’m off now for more vacationing… beer, laziness, no broken nose though!

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