Cycle the Alps - Lizard Head Cycling Guides
107 Aurum St, Box 855, Ophir, CO 81426 970.728.5891

Cycle the Alps

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Lizard Head Cycling Guides offers several cycling tours of the French Alps.

Cycle the High Alps of the Tour de France

If you ever dreamed of riding the Alps’ most famous passes regularly during the Tour de France, this is a dream tour fulfilled. John Humphries of Lizard Head Cycling Guides and local Frenchman extraordinaire Bertrand Marcal invite you to lose yourself for a week in the breathtaking countryside of some of the world’s most challenging and scenic areas known to cyclists. Refuel yourself each day with decadent high mountain treats such as raclette and tartiflette. Here is your chance do it all. This custom tour takes cyclists from Annecy to Grenoble over on some of the most stunning passes in the world while enjoying the cycling culture and food the region is famous for. The tour will be staffed with two guides and a support driver and there will be a maximum of 7 riders.

Cycle the High Alps of the Tour de France: The Details




Cycle the High Alps of the Tour de France: Dates

Potential tour dates are listed below. Please see the summer calendar for confirmed departures. Any unopened date can be a Custom Week (9 riders required). Please contact us via email or call 970.728.5891.

2021 Tour Dates

Included in the price of the 8-Day tour:

  • 7 nights lodging in 2 or 3 star hotels
  • 7 breakfasts
  • 7 lunches
  • 7 dinners
  • 2 Guides
  • Local Frenchwomen support vehicle with a driver
  • Luggage transfers
  • Bike (Included: But if you are picky, travel with your own.)

Not included:

  • Personal insurance
  • Alcoholic beverages

Cycle the High Alps of the Tour de France: Sample Itinerary

Leave from North America in the evening and arrive in Geneva in the early AM. There is a flight from New York that arrives at 6:30am on Day 1. If you can fly in a day earlier, by all means, do so.

Day 1: Meet Up
We all meet in T Jorioz (50 minutes from the Geneva Airport) at our hotel where we will spend the first 2 nights. We will put our bikes and gear together and go for a short afternoon ride around the lake (45km of mostly flats). Dinner and lodging are included on Day 1.

Day 2: Annecy to Annecy
130km (with many shorter options), 3000m vertical gain
We will ride the loop around Annecy that the Tour de France in 2013 followed.

Day 3: Annecy to St Jean de Maurienne
118km, 1900m vertical gain
Our day will start quite pleasantly following the mostly flat bike pass from Annecy to Albertville. We will be lunching in Albertville (home to the 1992 Winter Olympics) and will then ride a few more km of flats until we start our very challenging climb toward Col de la Madeline. This 25 km and 1600 meter climb will test your strength but will reward you with spectacular alpine scenery and the satisfaction of having made the climb. After summiting the pass, we will ride down to St Jean de Maurienne to our hotel. We will spend 2 nights there.


Day 4: St Jean de Maurienne Loop
Today you will be able to choose your ride. The Col du Glandon and Col de La Croix de Fer makes a wonderful choice (80km, 1900 meters vertical gain) and is one of many options. These two passes are regularly on the Tour de France itinerary.


Day 5: St Jean de Maurienne to Briancon
80km, 2500m vertical gain
Today is the day to ride one of the most emblematic passes in the Alps; 35km of climbing and 2000meters of vertical make the Col du Galibier a true test for any cyclist. After the summit our ride will take us downhill to Briancon. We will stay in Briancon for the next 2 nights.


Day 6: Briancon to La Grave
96km, 2000m vertical gain
Our day will start with a gentle downhill to Briancon where we will start the first climb of the day. It will take us to the famous Col de L’Izoard. We will return to Briancon and after lunch ride the long but not steep Col du Lautaret and down to La Grave, where we will spend the night.


Day 7: La Grave to Bourg d’Oisans
80km, 1700m vertical gain
Our day will start with a downhill to Bourg d’Oisans . From there, our last day of riding will tackle the amazing climb of Alpes d’Huez, the most recognized climb in the world of road biking. We will return via the Col de Sarenne. This pass was used by the tour de France 2013 for the first time. The pro riders went over Alpes d’Huez on their way to climb Col de Sarenne and then back over Apls d ‘Huez a second time. (Once in a day will be enough, but since the hotel is at the base of the climb you can always do it a second time on your own!) We will spend our last night in Bourg d’Oisans.


Day 8: Return to Annecy by car


Cycle the High Alps of the Tour de France: Pricing and Additional Information

8-Day Tour Cost: $3,490 per person, double occupancy

Single Room Supplement: $500 – for a private room each night of the tour. If cyclist is willing to share a room with a same sex cyclist and there are none available, add $300.

Tour Difficulty: Very challenging, many long climbs. To enjoy this tour you should be in excellent biking shape and previously have completed week long bike tours (but there is always the van).

Number of Riders: 5 rider minimum up to 8 maximum

Please contact us for more information by calling 970.728.5891 or send email to


Cycle the Alps with ELEVEN

The Chalet Pelerin is ideally located in the Savoie region of the French Alps – home to big mountains and endless alpine adventures. For biking enthusiasts, this is the mecca of tour riding. Cycle the Alps while riding multiple Tour de France (TDF) passes, enjoying classic French cuisine and experiencing authentic local culture in villages along the way. We’ll also explore the region’s breathtaking hikes, glaciers and via ferrata routes on the high cliffs, while those who wish to challenge gravity can try paragliding above Lake Annecy. During this trip you will ride the passes, meet the people and fall in love with the food and culture of one of cycling’s most spectacular destinations.

Cycle the Alps with ELEVEN: The Details




Cycle the Alps with ELEVEN: Dates

Potential tour dates are listed below. Please see the summer calendar for confirmed departures. Any unopened date can be a Custom Week (9 riders required). Please contact us via email or call 970.728.5891.

Summer 2020 Tour Dates

No tours scheduled at this time.

Included in the price of the 8-Day tour:

  • 5,500 sq ft private chalet that accommodates 8-10 guests
  • Fully staffed with in-house chef
  • Four king en-suite bedrooms
  • Bunk room with four twin beds
  • Children’s playroom with built-in twin bunk bed
  • Open plan living room with central fireplace
  • Indoor saltwater pool, Finnish sauna and steam room
  • Outdoor hot tub

Cycle the Alps with ELEVEN: Sample Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival into Geneva and transport to Chalet Pelerin located in picturesque Le Miroir

Day 2: Ride the Cormet de Roseland (used 9x in TDF)

Day 3: Adventure day with choice of mountain climbing, via ferrata, mountain biking and/or paragliding

Day 4: Ride Petit St. Bernard, Italy and the San Carlo (used 3x in TDF)

Day 5: Adventure day in Chamonix

Day 6: Ride the Iseran Pass, the highest mountain pass in Europe (used 5x in TDF)

Day 7: Departure and transport to Geneva

Optional “Go Big Day”: Take a helicopter to the base of the L’Alpe d’Huez, the most famous TDF climb. Ride the final 14kms to the top


Cycle the Alps with ELEVEN: Pricing and Inclusions

  • NOTE: Our planned August 28th, 2016 tour includes 3 nights at the Chalet Pelerin and 3 nights at a less over-the-top location (i.e. less expensive… details to follow). This results in a cost for the Cycle the Alps tour of $4,500 per person. Since this is a custom experience, costs can be adjusted to suit the desires of the group.
  • Lizard Head Cycling’s Cycle the Alps Tour Includes: 6 night lodging (3 at the Chalet Pelerin), 6 days of meals, transfers, bike rental, and guide service.
  • Three nights at the Chalet Pelerin Includes:
  • Private use of Chalet Pelerin
  • Pre-arrival holiday planning and private concierge
  • Exquisite accommodations and amenities
  • Full cycling and guide service offering custom adventure itineraries
  • Transportation to and from Geneva airport (helicopter transfer at an additional cost)
  • Fully staffed with in-house chef for breakfast, dinner and après cycling
  • Daily housekeeping and turn down service
  • Photographer for one day of activities
  • Seasonal retail amenity
  • Cycling mechanic
  • Demo fleet of road bikes

Click here to download the brochure with additional information.

Please contact us for more information by calling 970.728.5891 or send email to


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