What’s new and what’s on for cyclists in Alpe d’Huez grand domaine

The Tour de France, The Marmotte, The Megavalanche, all these races are burnt into cycling lore and all take place in the Alpe d’Huez grand domaine. This season marks the 40th anniversary of the Polka Dot jersey, 10 years of the Triathlon EDF Alpe D’Huez and the Megavalanche comes of age.  These events bring thousands to the roads and mountain sides of Alpe d’Huez each year. During the rest of the summer there is cycling for everyone else to enjoy, from new mountain biking sessions to the seasoned road cyclist offering, there are trails, mountain passes and a host of new summer offerings for all riders.

Alpe d’Huez grand domaine Road Cycling

Etched into the roads around the Alpe d’Huez are the names of famous road racers from years gone by to present day heros.  Road cycling is in the fabric of Alpe d’Huez and each year more events and more people come to experience it for themselves.

Tour de France 2015 – Stage 20 from Modane to Alpe d’Huez on Saturday 25th July 2015.

This year marks the 40th anniversary of the Poloka Dot  jersey (King of the mountains)  and white jersey (fastest overall rider under 25).  The last stage before the final on the Champs-Elysees, Alpe d’Huez’s famous 21 hairpins has the chance to upset the general classification, meaning a knuckle biting penultimate stage.  The last time the Tour attacked Alpe d’Huez in 2013 it was in its hundredth edition and there were 1 million spectators lining the 21 hair pins of its challenging ascent.

During the Tour de France week Alpe d’Huez is offering seven nights in a studio sleeping four for just £255. For more information and reservations please visit www.alpedhuez.com.

Try the 21 legendary turns

Each year millions of cyclists from all over the world, professional and amateurs come to make the 14.4 km, 1120 metre ascent from the valley floor to the village of Alpe d’Huez. To reward their efforts Alpe d’Huez gives out 2000 official diplomas of their time on the climb.

Available every Wednesday at 10 am from the 8th of July to the 26th August, Alpe d’Huez tourism office organises a timed climb of Alpe d’Huez’s 21 hairpins. Around 100 people take part per week and receive their official diploma. Participation costs €5 and can be registered at the tourist office.

NEW reserved Cols  for cyclists in July and August
Every Tuesday from 14th July a mountain pass (col) in Alpe d’Huez grand domain will be reserved purely for cyclists to enjoy at their leisure, without worrying about cars or other vehicles impeding their safety. Open to everyone from tandems to e-bikes and for training professionals and budding athletes alike, this year the ‘Oisans Col Series’ will be a chance for cyclists from all disciplines to take part in an untimed group ascent. It’s entirely free, no registration is required and refreshments are provided at the summit, as well as local products from the Route des Savoir-Faire de l’Oisans. The Oisans Col Series will be taking place at the Col de Sarenne on July 14th and August 18th from 9am to 12pm, and in Alpe d’Huez on August 4th from 9am to 11am. For more information visit: www.oisans-col-series.com.

Alpe d’Huez Grand Domaine Mountain Bike

Alpe d’Huez Grand Domaine VTT offers up more than 250km of trail covering 8 communities: Alpe d’Huez, Allemont, Auris-en-Oisans, Bourg d’Oisans, Le Freney, Oz-en-Oisans, Vaujany et Villard Reculas.  Mountain bikers have access to 37 marked trails, 5 downhill, 18 enduro, 14 cross country and 4 bike parks! The mountain biking in Alpe d’Huez grand domaine VTT offers a huge variety of natural environments. Snow, rocks, roots, forest and open alpine meadows can all be tackled in one trail. Starting at Pic Blanc, 3330 metres, riders can descend 2,610 metres to Allemont or Bourg d’Oisans without having to take another uplift. This is one of the longest downhill runs in the world.

NEW Biking Summer Camps
New this year the MCF (Moniteur Cycliste Français) school of cycling is offering morning summer camps for mountain bikers looking to learn or improve on technique or discover new trails. The morning downhill camps are split into five levels and cost from €25 per session if booked for 5 ½ days, or €30 for a singular session.

Mountain Bike Lessons

It’s never too late to have a go at mountain biking!  Every Sunday afternoon from 12.45pm to 2.45pm  and from 3pm to 5pm clients can get a beginner lesson in downhill mountain biking.  Lessons are taught by registered French mountain bike instructors and cost €29 euros per person.  This includes bike hire, protection, two uplift tickets and instruction. www.alpedhuezvtt.com

New afternoon Enduro Camps
Enduro is the latest biking trend mixing the best of downhill biking and trail riding to explore and discover off-the-beaten track terrain. This season the MCF will run Enduro-focused sessions every afternoon. Lead by expert guides who know the area like the back of their hand the sessions ensure riders will find the best routes and enjoy maximum thrills. The Enduro camps cost €25 per session if booked for 5 ½ days, or €30 for a singular session. Lessons are available in English. For more information visit: www.alpedhuezvtt.com.

New E-mountain bike sessions
If you need a little push, E-bikes are undoubtedly the easiest way to take in the views; whether it’s a gentle trail winding through the hills or something a little more adventurous, e-bikes help give that extra boost where it’s needed. Ideal for novices looking to explore everything the experts get to see, e-bikes are available to hire from several shops in Alpe d’Huez grande domaine, starting from just €42 per day. MCF School of Cycling also offers entry-level e-bike sessions for those looking to master the battery-assisted biking fun. For more information visit: www.alpedhuez.com.

Celebrate 20 years of the world’s’ wildest mountain bike race: the Megavalanche
Famed in mountain bike legend the Megavalanche mass-start downhill race begins from Le Pic Blanc at 3300m before hurtling down a glacier and onto the trails of the Alpe d’Huez bike park, finally finishing far below in Allemont at 720m.  It is the longest downhill mountain bike race in the world and a bucket list item for mountain bikers.  2015 is the Megavalanche’s 20th anniversary and the festival taking place from the 6th-15th July promises to be bigger and better than ever. Places sell out fast so those planning on participating should register soon at: www.bike-oisans.com.

Timed descents
Those keen to make their own timed descent but aren’t quite ready to tackle the Megavalanche can have a go in Oisans. The resort organises a timed event every Friday at 2pm, meeting at the top of the Piste des Vaches.’ The goal is to get down a blue run, riding over a series of banked bends, jumps and table tops in the best possible time. The best timed run will receive a prize! It’s free to sign up and can be entered on the day. Visit: www.satavtt.com

Main Events for Summer 2015

Thursday 4th June – 10th Edition Alpe d’Huzes

5000 cyclists climb the Alpe d’Huez 6 times in one day while 15,000 spectators cheer them on.  All in aid of Cancer relief in Holland the event raises around 21 million euros each year. www.opgevenisgeenoptie.nl

Saturday 4th July – La Marmotte Granfondo 34th edition

The race has 7500 participants  from 48 nations and covers a distance of 174km.  This classic sportif is a bucket list item for many road cyclists as it includes the famous climbs of the Glandon (1918m), Telegraphe (1570m), Galibier (2642m), Lautaret (2057m) and finishing on the Alpe d’Huez. www.sport-communication.com

6th-12th July – 21st Edition of the Megavalanche

2000 riders pit themselves against the toughest downhill course in the world.  Starting on the snow at the summit of the Pic Blanc the fastest 1400 riders race over a 20km track that descends over 4000 meters.

The Mega Kid, now in its 4th years, is a mini Mega race for children aged 9-14 yrs. www.megavalanche.com

Saturday 25th July – Tour de France

110km of suspense. The final stage before the finish on the cobbled streets of Paris.  This is where the final battles will be won and lost and what better place to finish that the famed hairpins of the Alpe d’Huez.  www.letour.fr

29th July-1st August – The Triathlon EDF Alpe d’huez celebrates 10 years

With the popularity of Triathlons skyrocketing in the UK the Alpe d’Huez Tri will be one not to miss.  3500 competitors, from amateur to pro, compete in a choice of 4 events over 4 days, duathlon, kids triathlon, regular and short distance triathlons.  The swim takes place in the crystal clear waters of Lac du Verney, the ride heads up the 21 turns of the Alpe d’Huez and the run takes off across the alpine slopes making this one of the most scenic triathlons on the planet. To celebrate 10 years the organisers are also throwing a special evening event on Friday 31st July. Visit: www.alpetriathlon.com for more information and to register.   

Recharge your batteries for a fraction of the price
Fresh, invigorating mountain air is absolutely unbeatable when it comes to rest and relaxation.  From the gentle, scenic hiking trails to adrenalin-filled mountain biking, there’s no shortage of revitalising and excitement in Alpe d’Huez. For just £103 per person, Alpe d’Huez is offering seven night’s accommodation in a studio for four people with access to the cable cars and a multi-activity premium card. The premium cards (worth £53 per person for 6 days or £42 per person for a family pass, based on a family of four with children up to the age of 20) grant users access to the outdoor pool, multiple activities at the sports centre and tennis courts, shuttles through the resort, and provide savings on guided tours. For more information and reservations visit www.alpedhuez.com

On June 27th 2014 Alpe d’Huez tourism won a 5 year national award for  tourism quality.  This focuses on new information and communication technology and putting into operation sustainable tourism.

For more information on Alpe d’Huez grand domaine and what’s on this summer season visit: www.alpedhuez.com