France From Inside Cycling and Wine Tours France

Cycling, Wine and Cultural Tours in the Dordogne, Pyrenees and Southwest of France.

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Conquer the Pyrenees

Chateau de Pitray
Chateau de Pitray

The Pyrenees 1000
Trip cost:  $4500 Dollars.
Dates:  Aug 29 to Sept 13.
  • Cols of the Pyrenees Ride:
  • Puerto Otxondo - 602 m
  • Puerto de Artesiaga - 996 m
  • Collado de Urkiaga - 890 m
  • Col d’Iraty - 1135 m
  • Col Bagargui - 1327 m
  • Col de Suscousse - 1216 m
  • Col de Soudet - 1540 m
  • Col de Marie Blanque - 1035 m
  • Col d’Aubisque - 1709 m
  • Col de Soulor - 1474 m
  • Col du Tourmalet - 2115 m
  • Col d’Aspin - 1489 m
  • Col d’Azet - 1737 m
  • Col de Peyresourde - 1569 m
  • Col du Portillon - 1320 m
  • Col de Mente - 1349 m
  • Col Portet d’Aspet -1069 m
  • Col de Catchaudegue - 893 m
  • Col Latrape - 1520 m
  • Col d’Agnes - 1570 m
  • Port de Liers - 1517 m
  • Pas de Souloumbrie - 911 m
  • Col de Mamare - 1361 m
  • Col de Chioula - 1431 m
  • Port de Pailheres - 2001 m
  • Col de Palomere - 1036 m
Rider qualifications

Ride Across the French Pyrenees - Coast to Coast - and Back !

1000 miles, 100'000 ft climbing, 12 days riding + 2 rest days.

August 29th to September 13th - 2019.  Contact me about signing up

This bike tour is for experienced and fit cyclists. Now what exactly does that mean? Well, on one end of the spectrum that includes bike racers, and on the other end it includes dedicated biking enthusiasts, people who love to ride their bikes a lot and can ride for a long time and are good at it. I know that you can never judge a book by it's cover, but when push comes to shove you should fit the following profile. My intent is not to scare people away, I just want to make sure that this ride is within your abilities and is right for you.

  • Skill level and riding ability: “Advanced,” and that means that you have ridden thousands of miles over the years, completed a lot of centuries, dedicated endless hours to riding your bike, and ridden many challenging rides and/or have raced. You love to ride a bike. It does not include people who have just completed their first century.
  • Years of cycling experience: A minimum of 4 years, and if that describes you then you had better be a very good athlete. Anything less and you don't yet have the experience and skill necessary to complete this ride. Ideally, you should have 8 years or more. Biking is your passion, you've been biking so many years that you no longer keep count, and a trip like this is the pinnacle of your cycling dreams.
  • Climbing speed: I’m not asking you to race up the hills at 12 mph or faster, but you should be able to climb at an average pace of 7 to 9 mph, better yet 8 to 10 mph (this is in reference to a 6% grade for 5 miles). If you ride at 4 to 5 mph up 6% hills then that is too slow for this trip. Speed in the flats: In a pace-line anywhere from 18 to 24 mph.
  • Riding in a group/pace-line: Riding in a pace-line and group should be second nature to you. This ride benefits from team work so you must be comfortable and willing to ride in a pace-line when it is appropriate.
  • Descending skills: You have to feel comfortable and be smooth descending. If you are too tentative and anxious descending hills then this ride is not for you. I want people to be careful and stay within their descending abilities, but someone who inches their way down a hill is not acceptable.
  • Lean body mass: A physical attribute of high cycling fitness is a very lean body.  You should be at a relatively low percentage of body fat. Come to this ride in shape, lean and ready. Do not come to this ride expecting to ride yourself into shape with pounds to lose!
  • Number of centuries you have ridden: Too many to count.
  • Endurance: Able to ride for 6 or more hours in a day, multiple days in a row, and you thrive on it!

Other skill sets:

  • Able to read a map and navigate on your own ! (in the event that you find yourself riding alone sometimes). This qualification is almost a mute point as now all the stages can be put on a Garmin computer with gps guiding.
  • Willingness to continue to persevere when you want to quit.
  • Looking for opportunities to stay on someone's wheel and conserve your energy.

Serious “faux-pas;” don’t kid yourself and think you can do this ride if:

  • You can’t ride in a pace-line.
  • You can’t keep pace with pace-lines that go 18 mph or faster.
  • You are out of shape and over your ideal cycling weight.
  • You can't climb hills well or descend.

Cycle and bike pyrenees mountains France From Inside Tours

Charles paces the group into the next climb...looking happy on Day 1 even though they have wet conditions..

" This trip will provide memories forever ! My only recommendation is to train before you go; this trip is not for the casual rider. This trip will definitely challenge you, but isn’t that what you would expect of the Pyrenees !  Charles Varela (completed the trip in 2007 and 2009)

The ultimate cycling challenge across the Pyrenees mountains

The 2011 crew, though a few didn't get the memo. No worries, ride on.