A fun 6 Col loop. The beautiful Chartreuse (Alps) Massif lies between Chambéry and Grenoble.
Starting from dowtown Chambéry, my goal was to mountain bike up into the massif through a little gap at Col du Mollard, on a forest trail/road — while visiting a bunch of Cols.
For quite a few road biking routes in the Chartreuse Alps see here.
I started near the Université de Savoie – who would have guess it was built on a hill? Almost immediately I was in the countryside, winding up a steep little paved road. After 6 or 7 kms the paved road ends and became a stony, gravel path.
The trails is very rocky and at times steep, so it’s hard going. Until near the first three cols it is all ride-able, but then at times is too steep and slippery to ride. It’s very peaceful, almost entirely through a fairly thick forest.
The last half kilometre to Col du Planet is very steep, and I mainly bike-pushed.
Don’t bother with the little detour I took up to Col des Fontanettes. It is completely unride-able, but being a col-hunting fool I pushed my bike up a very steep trail (too steep to even descend on bike).
After Col du Mollard, the forest ended and I found myself well inside the Chartreuse Alps, with nice views of cliff massives in every direction. The road is briefly unpaved, but I soon joined the paved road near Col de la Cluse.
I road up to the Col and then took another unpaved path for less than a kilometre just to visit an old friend: Col du Cucheron (don’t mistake with Col du Grand Cucheron).
The rest of the route is fully paved. I descended down to Entremont-le-Vieux and climbed up To Col du Granier. Finally, I descended 15 kilometres down and back into Chambéry.
A fun, quiet, 6 Col loop.
Quiet / No Traffic
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