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La Plagne (France)

6 January 2017 by hypersite

La Plagne (France)


La Plagne (French Alps)

Why go? These are the main reasons:

  • La Plagne offers some of the most scenic and challenging cols of France and is very centrally located with a lot of cols within a 15km radius.
  • Cols within a 15km radius: Cormet d’Arêches, Cormet de Roselend, La Plagne, Colle del Piccolo San Bernardo and the infamous Col d’Iseran that leads you to 2770m! Also very closeby (+- 20km): Col de la Madeleine and the extreme climb towards Lachat!
  • The price level within the La Plagne-region is very moderate, big plus compared to Italy and Switzerland! 
  • The La Plagne-region provides for a great opportunity to go off the beaten track to a less crowded -but stunning- region with serious climbing challenges!

Check out the accommodations

Bourg St. Maurice – Col d’Iseran – Bourg St. Maurice

  • 94km
  • 2045m

Make your way towards Bourg St. Maurice and follow the signs towards Val-d’Isère/Col d’Iseran over the D902. But most important, prepare for an epic climb of 46.9km from Bourg St. Maurice to the summit climbing 2045 meters at an average of 4.2%!

So Col d’Iseran is not the steepest col of them all, however the parts towards Tignes and after Val d’Isère are 6-8% and especially the last 10km will be though given the extreme length of the climb. Once you’ve conquered the col, enjoy the view and descend towards Val d’Isère for a well-deserved lunch.

Probably you’ve had enough for the day, so descend to Bourg St. Maurice and call it a day!

Aime – Cormet d’Arêches – Beaufort – Cormet de Roselend – Bourg St. Maurice 

  • 81km
  • 2993m

Important: last km’s of Cormet d’Arêches are unpaved. It’s ok if you have (some) experience in the mountains and if you’re willing to risk a flat tyre, we’ve been riding with road bikes ourselves back in 2016 without any problem!

From the village of Aime, start ascending Cormet d’Arêches and make sure you climb towards the village of Granier and afterwards follow the D218 towards the summit. Enjoy the sound of silence; except for the cowbells! Descend towards Beaufort, a beautiful scenic village famous for its French cheese, to prepare for your second climb the day. If you have time for lunch, a Beaufort cheese-sandwich is a must!

From Beaufort, climb Cormet de Roselend where you will pass Lac de Roselend and can enjoy the scenery if 7.1% average slope allows you to. After finishing your second climb, descend towards Bourg St. Maurice.

Staying in Cote d’Aime at ChaletM? Then ride back via the plateau which beats the N90 by a mile; follow Vulmix, Les Chapelles, Picollard and Valezan. Watch out not to descend towards Bellentre (hold right at the intersection to go to Cote d’Aime) as this will bring you another 6km of climbing…

Feisonnet – Col de la Madeleine – La Chambre – Col de la Madeleine – Feisonnet

  • 80km
  • 3610m

From the La Plagne-region (valley of Bourg St. Maurice/Aime/Cote d’Aime) we suggest to travel to the Col de la Madeleine by car. This as the N90 is not particularly suited for road cyclists. Park your car near Feissonnet (not in Albertville), as this is were the Col de la Madeleine starts!

The classic trip takes you up to the summit, down to La Chambre and up again either via Montgellafrey or Montoudras. You can really test yourself on this climb, as Col de la Madeleine is quite steap ranging from 6-10% especially from the La Chambre-side.

Looking for a shorter trip but with a challenge? Then climb Col de la Madeleine from Feissonnet and turn right at Villard-Benoît; a choice you might regret! This is the start of an unknown beauty called Lachat; 9km at 10% on a perfect road with great surroundings! Ascend back to Villard-Benoît after your heart rate is back on earth and continue the climb of Col de la Madeleine, which will bring you at around 2450m of climbing in 68km.