So, thanks to the ongoing pandemic and subsequent “no fly” policy in the family, I get another cycling adventure this year.
As we will be going to France, I have obviously and as usual dubbed it “Tour de France 2021”.
While I do feel sorry for Paula’s not getting her well deserved sun vacation, I’m also excited at the prospect of having another go at the giants of the French Alps.
I was thinking (again) to plan for the Pyrenees, but I eventually couldn’t withstand the temptation of a remake of part one of my Tour de France 2014.
That was way too short – not the tour, just the first part – to tackle everything that’s in that area.
So for the Tour de France 2021, we’ve rented an apartment in Saint-Jean-de Maurienne, which is located at the base of the…
… Col de la Croix de Fer.
Anyone familiar with the Savoie area, will know that a bit further south, you’ll find Saint-Michel-de Maurienne, at the base of the Télégraphe/Galibier.
Or the fork to Valmeinier, which I will definitely take on this time, unlike in 2014, when I did’t have the time.
North of Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne, La Chambre is (near) the starting point for the climbs up the East end of the Glandon and the west end of the Madeleine.
Not to mention that in between those two, the Lacets de Montvernier seems to be a “must” and that would also be a first for me.
I will leave discussing the various alternatives and climbs starting at our doorstep (Col du Mollard, La Toussiere, Les Sybelles – too many) for one of the next posts.
Obviously, I will try and plan a stage with the Iseran from Modane and revisit some of the cols between Albertville (Beaufort), Moutiers and Bourg-Saint-Maurice.
Méribel and Courchevel would be new to me in that area, but La Plagne, Les Arcs and the majestic Roselend are not.
The latter I’d rather climb from Beaufort, which requires a (short) car transfer.
And yes, a Marmotte alternative is in the back of my head again too, so it’s very likely I’ll get my 10th Alpe d’Huez in the books 🙂
More on this Tour de France 2021 later, so stay tuned!