A very steep, very scenic ride high above Combloux ski station with Mont Blanc dominating the surrounding views.
For more rides starting in the same region see here
I started down low near Sallanches (550 metres). Note, the route is paved until 1300 metres following a quiet road that is also a good road-bike alternative to much of the busy main road for anyone climbing towards Megève (see map below).
At Haut Combloux the paved road ends becoming a wide (still steep) rocky dirt road climbing through a forest.
The higher one gets the better the views, especially of Mont Blanc:
Getting closer to Col du Jaillet (1723 metres) the road becomes smaller and smaller eventually becoming a hiking trail.
I wanted to continue to Le Petit Croisse Baulet (2009 metres), and began pushing the bike up. About half way I realised bringing the bike was pointless – and tiring. So I left it in some scrub and hiked higher feeling much lighter and happier.
The views from the summit are fantastic, in both directions:
I then hiked down and a little further reaching Col de l’Avenaz (1929 metres). Here the hiking continues much higher. But I had my extra col, so I turned around here. 🙂
I had mapped on my GPS an alternate mountain bike trail for the return to Sallanches that I had read about online. But looking at it in person, I decided I was an old, scared, untalented mountain bike descender … and declined the challenge. 🙂
So I just retraced my steps, making a small detour to enjoy the views from Croix des Salles:
To repeat myself, this is steep. But it’s perfectly ride-able all the way to Col du Jaillet. A beautiful route with rewarding views.
Quiet / No Traffic
I have just found your blog and really like it ! Congrats for all the climbs already done 😉 I only know some of them in Savoie and Haute-Savoie, as well as in Switzerland for living there, impressive.
As an alternative path to climb to Col du Jaillet from Sallanche you could also use the “MB Race” itinary through Cordon, then Route de la Jorasse, and the forest gravel road. It is steep at some places but everything is ridable, except for 5′ near the end where you will have to hike. Here you can see on a map : http://www.strava.com/activities/339674575
I will definitely continue to follow your rides and have already added your blog to my RSS reader !
excellent, thanks for the strava route. I’ll try a different way up next year