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8 Days Thrilling Mountain Biking Adventure Alps to Provence, France
This listing has no upcoming availability. Check out these similar experiences

This listing has no upcoming availability. Check out these similar experiences


(No availability) 8 Days Thrilling Mountain Biking Adventure Alps to Provence, France

Auberge des Ecrins, Les Borels, Champoléon, 05260, France

Alps to Provence Mountain Biking Holiday in France

A spectacular mountain bike ride with varied scenery and a choice of routes for intermediate to advanced bikers. From the snow capped mountains of the Ecrins National Park to the lavender fields of Provence - it is a real journey.

Key information

  • Trip type: Self-guided
  • Lodging: Point to Point
  • Terrain: Mountainous
  • Difficulty level: Moderate (Cyclist needs to have a good level of fitness, terrain is mostly hilly or unpaved but they will ride on flat terrain sometime,31-45 miles per day), Challenging (Cyclist needs to have high level of fitness, must be an active rider, the terrain includes really challenging climbs/or 46-80 or more miles per day)
  • Total Distance : 90 to 137 miles / 145 to 221 kilometers
  • Average Elevation : "592 to 1235 meters / 1942 to 4052 feet
  • Vacation type: Mountain biking
  • Type of bike: Mountain bike

Highlights

  • 6 days of mountain biking
  • Enjoy mountain biking in the Southern Alps
  • Maps and GPS tracks of the route adapted to your level
  • Daily healthy breakfast and dinner
  • 7 nights accommodation
  • Baggage transfers

Skill level

  • Intermediate
  • Advanced

Styles


6 days with instruction
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Accommodation

Your first night will be at the Auberge des Ecrines, your second night will be at the Chamois Hotel, your third at Hotel Muret, your fourth at Veras Priory, your fifth will be at Amy's Mill, your sixth at Auberge de la Meouge, and your seventh will be at the Grand Hotel du Cours.

Auberge des Ecrines

Basic but comfortable - this is a great little Auberge newly refurbished in a unique style of modern funky decor and located in the middle of the majestic Champoléon Valley.

Chamois Hotel

A family-run hotel situated in the heart of Ancelle with swimming pool in the summer and easy access to the ski pistes in winter. Good local food and cosy rooms.

Hotel Muret

A beautiful family owned 3 star hotel in the lovely village of Sigoyer, with a range of comfortable rooms and a swimming pool.

Veras Priory

This beautiful large stone building was once a priory but has since been renovated into a friendly bed and breakfast. It is located in the heart of Oze, a lovely hamlet with a Provence feel.

Amy's Mill

Amy's Mill is a basic but comfortable auberge located amidst a wonderful countryside setting. It is a perfect stopover for the cyclists doing the Alps to Provence Tour.

Auberge de la Meouge

A rustic but comfortable Auberge located in the hamlet of Barret sur Méouge, minutes away from the awe inspiring Gorges de la Méouge.

Grand Hotel du Cours

A classic French hotel located in the heart of the beautiful medieval town of Sisteron. The Grand Hotel du Cours is a clean and comfortable place with 45 bedrooms.

Program

Start in the snow capped mountains of one of the most dramatic mountain ranges of the French Alps, the Ecrins, and end up in the lavender fields of Provence. This varied route starts off in the Champoleon valley with the dramatic snowcapped mountains of the Ecrins massif all around you.

The golden eagles, marmots, chamois and ibex will be watching you with curiosity as you descend the mountains and traverse the magnificent Champsaur and Gapencais valleys. All your hard work will be rewarded as you arrive in Le Buech as the scent of lavender wafts past your nose.

The final destination is the site of the Meouge gorge - a beautiful conservation area in the heart of Provence. The gorge is seven kilometers long with dramatic limestone sides. The water is crystal clear and there are sand beaches, waterfalls and waterholes along its length. You finish the tour in the beautiful, fortified, medieval town of Sisteron.

There are a variety of routes possible for this tour, but the true off road routes are better adapted to intermediate and advanced bikers with technical single tracks, spectacular mountain ridges with panoramic views mixed with some easy forest trails traversing beautiful alpine woods and meadows, river and lakeside paths, tracks and canal paths. For less experienced riders, there are a reasonable amount of back road sections to avoid some of the harder single tracks.

When you enquire, you will asked about your mountain biking experience and how much ascent, descent and number of kilometers you expect to do each day. An itinerary will be suggested based on the one described below and subject to accommodation availability (which can change).

You will work with a well respected, local mountain bike expert with in depth knowledge and experience of the routes and variations possible to ensure you are provided with the best route possible for your party.

Once the general route has been agreed and you have booked, Undiscovered Mountains will then look after all the logistics for you, make the accommodation reservations, arrange your baggage transfers and give you the maps and GPS tracks you need for your trip.

This is a self guided trip, so you do need to be self sufficient and capable of doing your own basic repairs. You must be able to read a map and follow GPS tracks as the routes we use are not always way marked. The organizers are available throughout your trip for emergencies and can help you find bike shops, taxis or other things you may need. Please note any call outs, taxis, bike parts or other extra items arranged are not included in the price and are payable as extras.

The Alps to Provence is a fabulous mountain biking adventure taking you from the snow capped mountains of the Ecrins to the lavender fields, apricots and peaches of Provence.

There are a few variations on this route and it is even possible for the same group to have different routes that end up at the same accommodation each night. So if you have mixed abilities or are a family with a mountain bike mad dad or teenagers (minimum age recommended is age 13) and a mum who wants a more gentle ride ...it is possible!

For less experienced riders, the route would be mainly on canal paths, forest trails and tracks and quiet back roads and the distances would be shorter with less ascent and descent. For serious mountain bikers, expect single track and much more technical routes with lots more distance and ascent and descent!

This itinerary is an example to give you an idea. We will fix the exact route at the time of booking subject to accommodation availability and final route choice. When you enquire, you will be asked about your mountain biking experience and level and suggest the most suitable variation for you with what accommodation is available. Once you have a general itinerary, will send you the booking form and then get it organised for you!

Please note, this is a self guided holiday and the trails and routes we use are not waymarked routes so you will need to be comfortable reading a map and using GPS tracks.

Day 1: Arrival

If you have chosen to take a transfer, you will be collected from Gap train station and take you to your accommodation. If not, you will make your way to the Auberge for the start of your adventure!

Day 2: Champoleon to Ancelle

Easy Route

  • Distance: 19 kilometers
  • Ascent: 500 meters
  • Descent: 500 meters

Technical Route:

  • Distance: 40 kilometers
  • Ascent: 1559 meters
  • Descent: 1507 meters

The Champoleon valley is situated just on the edge of the Ecrins National park with a dramatic backdrop of snow-capped mountains and glaciers. The area is rich in wildlife, with chamois and ibex frequenting the steep cliffs and mountain sides and marmots scurrying form burrow to burrow all around. There is even a pair of golden eagles who have made this valley their home. For committed mountain bikers on the technical itinerary there is a beautiful single track route traversing the mountainside with panoramic views of the valley.

There is a physically demanding technical ascent up to the Tante Yvonne cabin and then a beautiful long descent down to your accommodation for the night in Ancelle. For a more easy going day, it is the same start but instead of going up to tante Yvonne, there is a pretty canal path traversing the valley.

At the end of the canal path there is a track taking you up over the col and down into the village of Ancelle. Ancelle is a very pretty alpine village situated on a plateau surrounded by mountains.

Day 3: Ancelle to Haut Correo

Easy Route:

  • Distance: 25 kilometer
  • Ascent: 600 meters
  • Descent: 750 meters

Technical Route

  • Distance: 31 kilometers
  • Ascent: 950 meters
  • Descent: 1114 meters

This is a fabulous leg taking you from the Champsaur valley with it's spectacular high mountain backdrop and pretty alpine villages. For technical riders, this is a challenging ascent up to the col de Moissiere where you will be rewarded with spectacular views over the Durance valley. After that there is a fantastic traverse to the col de Manse with panoramic views all the way along on a mixture of single track and canal paths to Rabou. For mountain bikers who want a challenge, there is a fantastic variant up to the col de Gleize with a great single track descent into Rabou.

The easy route starts with a quiet road and then a path to get to the col de Manse where, if you were in a mixed group, you could meet up with the sporty riders and ride together with panoramic views and plenty of photo and picnic opportunities to share along the way. The route then descends to Rabou.

Day 4: Haut Correo to Veynes

Easy Route

  • Distance: 26 kilometers
  • Ascent: 450 meters
  • Descent: 450 meters

Technical Route

  • Distance: 40 kilometers
  • Ascent: 2000 meters
  • Descent: 2000 meters

A beautiful route through the pre-Alps crossing cols, forest, fields and mountains. For the hard core mountain bikers this is a long leg with several passages over cols including a magnificent single track descent into Montmaur.

The easy version is mainly on small roads and paths traversing the same countryside but omitting the big ascents and descents! The last climb up to your accommodation is a challenge at the end of your day but allows you to ride through beautiful countryside in peace and quiet!

Day 5: Veynes to Serres

Easy Route

  • Distance: 25 kilometers
  • Ascent: 700 meters
  • Descent: 700 meters

Technical Route

  • Distance: 37 kilometers
  • Ascent: 700 meters
  • Descent: 700 meters

A wonderful route following the river Buech as it winds down the valley. You will pass fields of lavender, apricots and peaches. For experienced mountain bikers riding the technical route, this is a relative rest day starting with a nice descent down past Veynes. Afterwards you continue up to the col de la Croix near Savournon where you will be staying for the night.

For the easy mountain bikers, your day starts on a quiet tarmac road and takes you though pretty villages of Aspres St Buech, Aspremont, Sigottier and Serres. Towards the end of your day you end up at a swimming lake where a welcome swim and sunbathe might be in order, before you head to your accommodation.

Day 6 Serres to Laragne

Easy Route

  • Distance: 18 kilometers
  • Ascent: 800 meters
  • Descent: 800 meters

Technical Route

  • Distance: 30 kilometers
  • Ascent: 1300 meters
  • Descent: 1300 meters

Now in the heart of the Alpes Provence you will be riding through orchards, lavender fields and all those lovely 'provencal' scenes you dream about! For the 'sportif' mountain bikers you start with a climb over the Montagne de St Genis ridge which is the last real barrier before you descend towards the Sisteron valley. After that there is another climb along a pretty path up to the Riou swimming lake where you can stop for a well deserved swim and sunbathe before continuing on to Laragne.

For the easy option, you conto the Montagne de Saint Genis for a more direct route towards the swimming lake where you have the choice of swimming in the lake or stopping off for a wilder, refreshing bath in the Riou gorges. Save a bit of energy for your last climb to Vieil-Eyguians and the château d'Arzeliers !

Day 7: Laragne to Sisteron

Easy Route

  • Distance: 32 kilometers
  • Ascent: 500 meters
  • Descent: 500 meters

Technical Route

  • Distance: 43 kilometer
  • Ascent: 900 meters
  • Descent: 900 meters

The last leg of your Alps to Provence mountain bike trip! This is a great finale to your trip with a varied route taking in dramatic mountain gorges, peach and apricot orchards and a spectacular finish in the citadel of Sisteron. The hard core mountain biker route takes you on a circuit around the Mountain of St Cyr overlooking the beautiful Méouge Gorges with very tempting rock pools waiting to be jumped into!

The end of the route takes you through the orchards of Sisteron where the sweet scent of peaches and apricots are a welcome distraction! On your arrival you will be rewarded with the dramatic view of the Sisteron citadel - the challenge - will you be able to walk all the way to the top?

For families and easy riders your route is almost the same without the mountain of Saint Cyr ascent but still with a quick visit to the beautiful Méouge Gorges - dramatic canyons carved into the limestone with welcoming rock pools for a quick refresh!

Day 8: Departure

The end of your mountain biking trip! If you haven't had a chance to explore Sisteron - today is your opportunity - it is an intriguing place! If you are using Undiscovered Mountains for your transfer, you will be collected from Sisteron.

Skill Level

Intermediate:

  • Can cycle for 3-4 hours
  • Average riding experience
  • Little assistance required
  • Comfortable with extreme curves and leans
  • Average experience with unsurfaced roads
  • Steep ascents and descents

Advanced:

  • Can cycle for 5-6 hours
  • Extensive riding experience
  • Assistance on demand (if required)
  • Experienced with riding a variety of bicycles
  • Comfortable with any terrain and weather conditions

Location

This cycling holiday will start from Auberge and will take you to Champoleon, Ancelle, Haut Correo, Veynes, Serres, Leragne, and Sisteron, France.

Food

Daily breakfast and dinner are included.

The following meals are included:

  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

The following dietary requirement(s) are served and/or catered for:

  • Regular (typically includes meat and fish)
If you have special dietary requirements it's a good idea to communicate it to the organiser when making a reservation

What's included

  • 7 nights accommodation
  • Daily breakfast and dinner
  • Baggage transfers between accommodation
  • Maps and GPS tracks of the route adapted to your level

Cancellation Policy

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 25% of the total price.
  • The deposit is non-refundable, if the booking is cancelled.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid 30 days before arrival.
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