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Mount Ventoux leg of the Tour de France

Listed under Cycling in Provence-Cote d'Azur, France.

  • Photo of Mount Ventoux leg of the Tour de France
  • Photo of Mount Ventoux leg of the Tour de France
  • Photo of Mount Ventoux leg of the Tour de France
  • Photo of Mount Ventoux leg of the Tour de France
  • Photo of Mount Ventoux leg of the Tour de France
  • Photo of Mount Ventoux leg of the Tour de France
  • Photo of Mount Ventoux leg of the Tour de France
Photo of Mount Ventoux leg of the Tour de France
Photo by flickr user jurvetson
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As classic cycling tours go this is one of the most popular: we’ve all seen it on our tv screens at home while watching the Tour de France and people from all over the world want to emulate this, one of the most gruelling stages.

Realistically you need to be fit to do it, not just jogging in the mornings fit, cycling 10% inclines over 6 kilometres of hairpin bends against possibly unfavourable wind conditions fit.

And while most of Provence is green and pretty landscape, the mountain terrain is different, with lavender meadows followed by rocky outcrops as you near the pinnacle.

The climb itself begins gently through orchards and vineyards for the first 5k then gets steep quickly between St. Esteve and le Chalet Renard. After that with still 6k of the whole 21 to go the scenery and going gets harsher and it can take 2 or 3 hours to get to the top. Most people will advise you to leave early to make the most of the view.

As well as tackling the mountain itself ride the whole region through Gordes and Venasque to take advantage of the regions wine and culinary leaning (truffles are big on menus in this region as are cheeses and honey and there are some lovely vineyards to visit if you fancy it - and you don’t even have to worry about driving.) and pretty buildings and market culture. It’s windy as you get further up the mountain, which makes the going harder and cooler but the summers in Provence are too hot for cyclists - best to stick to the milder months of Spring and Autumn when you can still expect plenty of sunshine.

Written by  Jake Marsden.

Other expert and press reviews

“I faced the torment of the Tour de France”

By Paul Sanders for The Times First Published July 25th 2009 Mont Ventoux stands tall not only in the Provençal countryside but also in the legend of the Tour de France. “The Giant of Provence” taunts you from the start and towers al… Read more...

Written by press. Continue reading on timesonline.co,uk

“I faced the torment of the Tour de France”

By Paul Sanders for The Times First Published July 25th 2009 Mont Ventoux stands tall not only in the Provençal countryside but also in the legend of the Tour de France. “The Giant of Provence” taunts you from the start and towers al… Read more...

Written by press. Continue reading on timesonline.co,uk

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