Author: Will

Happiest while cycling uphill.

Woohoo, my first ride not starting from home in 6 months. I was motivated as yesterday was my first ride of 2021 in shorts, and tonight France is almost certainly going to announce stricter lockdown conditions. 🙁 Part of my 2021 Cycling Challenge was to climb 100 cols, so I needed to get moving as I’ve been cycling the 5 cols near me over and over. 🙂 The loop climbs Col de Richemond (1060m) then visits several nearby Cols atop the Plateau de Retord, finally descending back to the start via Col de Cuvery (1178m). See bottom map with all…

Read More

I hope everyone is doing well. I know, it’s been a while since I posted. Between COVID, winter, and a couple of other things – I’ve only ridden from home so far this year. No new adventures … yet. But I’ve been riding a lot locally. I am actually on pace for my 2021 Challenge of cycling uphill one foot for every single minute of the year. 🙂 525,600 minutes = 525,600 feet = 160,200 metres. Hopefully, I’ll get more adventurous at some point soon. But here are a few photos of recent rides. Be well.

Read More

2021 would be the 17th year of my silly annual cycling challenges. Back in 2005, I was an occasional cyclist and challenged myself to ride 10,000 kilometres. Now I am addicted to riding my bike. See here for my 2020 Cycling Challenge results. I must admit that I have come close to ending this blog after this depressing year. Me on twitter a few hours ago. 🙂 I am considering ending my blog and simply posting photos of "benches with a view" 🙂 pic.twitter.com/hiCNoBWGKV— cyclingchallenge (@cyclingalps) December 31, 2020 But fuck it. Yes, 2020 sucked. But let’s have some hope.…

Read More

Year 16 of this blog and my silly annual cycling challenges. It was obviously a fairly lousy year. First, let me wish everyone well. Here’s to a better new year. Of course, 2020 was a strange cycling year for me. Zero overnight trips and few ambitious new rides. But I definitely used cycling as a way of managing my personal well-being. The after effects of exercise are highly underrated and whenever I felt down, I went pedaling. Here are the results versus my 2020 Cycling Challenge. 160,200 Metres of Vertical Ascent 525,600 minutes in a year 525,600 feet = 160,200…

Read More

Busy doing your Christmas shopping? Looking for a 2021 cycling or cow calendar? Well, look no further. For obvious reasons the majority of my cycling was local this year, so I’ve made only two calendars for 2021: A cycling calendar and a cows calendar. Moo! There is only one size this year: (11 x 8.5 in / 279 x 216 mm) Price: $9.99 or a similar amount in other currencies. Global delivery is reliable. Lulu.com, the publisher, sometimes has coupon codes available to lower the price. Use google to search for a coupon code in your geography. For example, SPOOKY10…

Read More

It’s getting colder and the high Alps has fresh snow. With lots of lousy weather in the immediate forecast, my goal was to profit from a sunny day and enjoy some close-up views of Mont Blanc. Col du Joly (1989 metres) is paved on its west side from Beaufort. But I love the unpaved north-east side starting from Les Contamines. Les Contamines was also the start point for my amazing 3-day mountain bike “Tour of Mont Blanc Unpaved” with my friend Alfie. Details here Leaving Les Contamines, the route quickly joins a steep, unpaved farm road. As the map profile…

Read More

Lac du Bourget is the largest and deepest lake entirely in France. It is surrounded by the Alps and Jura mountains including Mont du Chat, one of the toughest road bike climbs in France. Doreen and I would ride the bike path on the south east side of the lake and then visit the very scenic Col du Chat above. See here for a detailed post mapping and describing a bunch of cycling climbs and loops in the Lac du Bourget region. We started on the south edge of the lake. There is a segregated bike path that reaches Aix-les-Bains…

Read More

Originally, I had planned to see the Tour de France today. But I am feeling un-social lately. So instead I mountain-biked up to some cols above/between Megève and Col des Saisies. The only thing spoiling the glorious silence? A bunch of damn (Tour de France) helicopters in the distance. 🙂 This challenging route visits 6 cols (all labeled on 2nd map at very bottom). The first two (Golet, 1480m and Col du Drayon, 1517m) I had never visited before. So there are a couple of very steep, difficult stretches early on as I tried to link them to the upper…

Read More

I often call the Vercors the most under-rated cycling region in the Alps. The massif to the south-west of Grenoble doesn’t have the highest roads in the Alps, but it is full of stunning gorges and mind-blowing cliff stretches. Here are ten route suggestions: Note: Many of the routes on the map below overlap. If you zoom the map and hover your mouse on a route it should be highlighted. Plus every ride discussed below will include a link to a more detailed post and map. #1 Combe Laval / Col de la Battaille Loop Blue route on map Combe…

Read More

I don’t know why I don’t do more rides-to-see-the-sunrise-at-a-mountain-summit.** **I do know: It requires a very early start! 🙂 For a good summit sunrise ride the mountain has to have great views towards the rising sun. This disqualifies a surprisingly large number of big climbs. But one of Mont Salève’s two summits is named “Panorama des Alpes” and has clear eastward views. My friend Tim and I had been planning the ride for a long time and decided that the weather was now perfect. We would climb the ultra steep NE side from Le Coin, the same side that our…

Read More