Col des Cyclotouristes loop


In 1967 a local farmer – Jean Poncet – joined two mountain forestry roads, one from Queige the other from Venthon creating this fantastic “Col.”

Then, in 1969 during a rally, someone erected the Col des Cyclotouristes sign at the top. This sign was quickly removed by the Mayor of Venthon – because it’s not technically a geographic col (damn bureaucrats).

But the sign was replaced during a winter storm – without anyone leaving foot prints! Finally, in 1992 the name Col des Cyclotouristes appeared on an IGN map. It was official.

For more on the history see this French link.

There is now a monument to Jean Poncet at the top:

“Jean, in inventing this Col (mountain pass), you have engraved in our memories an indelible track. Your friends cyclotouristes”

Monument at Col des Cyclotouristes

Fort du Mont Steep stretch through the woods

Starting just below the historic village of Conflans, it’s a very nice climb on a super quiet road. Hairpins absolutely everywhere (see map).

2 kilometres from the top is the Fort du Mont. A miltary fort built in the 1880’s (see photo at left).

The descent – apart from a few potholes – is also very scenic:

After the fort, the quality of the road deteriorates. The entire route is paved – and it’s definitely possible on a road bike if you are not fussy, but I was happy to have my hybrid – especially beyond the fort and descending the other side.

Descending Col des Cyclotouristes

After descending, I had mapped a route on more very quiet roads on the other side of the valley, visiting a couple more Cols (see map).

Col de la Forclaz de Queige Col de Montessuit

Col de la Forclaz and Col de Montessuit are both fairly small, but quiet and scenic. And they turn the route into a nicer, more challenging loop than just returning directly to Albertville on the main road.

Above Queige

Oh, and I bumped into the Google Maps car halfway up to Col des Cyclotouristes. He stopped and we snapped each others photo: 🙂

the Google Maps Car

About Author

Happiest while cycling uphill.


  1. Belle montée, rien qu’en regardant une carte détaillée, on voit que c’est une montée intéressante avec tous les lacets, et il y a plusieurs routes possibles sur cette montagne (parfois en cul-de-sac) 🙂
    Ce col des Cyclotouristes n’est pas un col géographique et malheureusement il n’a pas été retenu par les “puristes” 100 Cols. Mais beau panneau tout de même, ça vaut le coup de monter avec en plus ce vieux fort.
    Quand tu seras visible sur Google Maps, fais nous le savoir ! 😆

  2. Bastien, c’est dommage que ce col n’est pas partie de “club des cent cols. ” It is more interesting than hundreds of other real cols.

    Je pensais à faire Col du Joly avec Lac de la Girotte

  3. Will, on ne badine pas avec l’appellation de col, la sélection est drastique ! 🙂
    Le lac de la Girotte est facile à partir de la montée du col du Joly, environ 230m de dénivelé sur une piste. Ce qui doit être “more challenging” est de faire une boucle avec, à partir de la Girotte, le sentier qui mène au Col du Sallestet (2112m) puis au Pas d’Outray (2181m) pour retomber ensuite sur une route (1500m) qui descend sur Beaufort.

  4. Will, you need to protect your privacy. Being snapped by Google Cheese means that before long everyone will know you live halfway up a deserted mountain 😉

    And don’t you just wish you were wearing your best ‘Hello Mum’ shirt all the time 🙂

Leave A Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!