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Arsey
02-05-08, 14:12
I'm planning on riding the Routes Des Grandes Alpes next month,and then hopefully up the Route Napoleon and possibly over to Millau and the Gorges Du Tarn.

I have an official Routes Des Grandes Alpes map and I've put the route into Mapsource to zap over onto my 2610.

But there are a couple of alternative routes on the RDGA.

One is around Barcelonnette where you can either head down the D902/D2202 and take in the Col de la Cayolle etc shown as 'A' below or alternatively branch off just before Barcelonnette and take the D64/D2205 and go over the Col de la Bonette,the highest pass in Europe,shown as 'B' below :


<img src="http://img.skitch.com/20080502-xr54chyrspksqmsimq91nn9g5u.jpg" alt="Picture 2"/>


I read Ebbo's excellent write up from his 2005 trip (http://www.ebbo.org/routegrandalps2005-1.php) and they took the latter option.

Has anybody done both and have any recommendations as to which is more scenic ?

Ta

Bateman
02-05-08, 14:28
One of my favourite stretches of the RGA was the Cayolle. I had the same dilemma so what i did was ride up to bayonette in the evening which takes about 30 minutes, enjoy the views at the top, then back down to barcolenette again - a cracking ride. We then stayed overnight and took the Cayolle route which I thought was great.

Not sure if you saw this - my trip report - with pictures from both of the routes above:

http://www.ukgser.com/forums/showthread.php?t=74689

John Armstrong
02-05-08, 14:57
IMO if you're in the area and the mountain tops are clear you just have to do the Bonette as it's there. If it's clear, there can be quite a few cars up there and only the odd dozen GS's :o

Much more interesting road than the Stelvio. One test would be, have a look at the Michelin map for the area, and see which has the longest green snake next to it.

Arsey
02-05-08, 15:19
One of my favourite stretches of the RGA was the Cayolle. I had the same dilemma so what i did was ride up to bayonette in the evening which takes about 30 minutes, enjoy the views at the top, then back down to barcolenette again - a cracking ride. We then stayed overnight and took the Cayolle route which I thought was great.

Not sure if you saw this - my trip report - with pictures from both of the routes above:

http://www.ukgser.com/forums/showthread.php?t=74689

Ta,I'll have a look.


IMO if you're in the area and the mountain tops are clear you just have to do the Bonette as it's there. If it's clear, there can be quite a few cars up there and only the odd dozen GS's :o

Much more interesting road than the Stelvio. One test would be, have a look at the Michelin map for the area, and see which has the longest green snake next to it.


I've got this map (http://www.stanfords.co.uk/stock/route-des-grandes-alpes-102401/) which is excellent.

Arsey
02-05-08, 15:35
Bateman,

Just had a look at your thread-I'd forgotten all about the Gorge du Verdon.

Think I might bin Millau/Tarn Gorge and head up the Route Napoleon and then branch off and do this gorge instead.

At Castellane,is the best road to take the D952 north of the canyon and then link on to the D71 to ride south of the canyon ?

Ta

Bateman
02-05-08, 18:40
Bateman,

Just had a look at your thread-I'd forgotten all about the Gorge du Verdon.

Think I might bin Millau/Tarn Gorge and head up the Route Napoleon and then branch off and do this gorge instead.

At Castellane,is the best road to take the D952 north of the canyon and then link on to the D71 to ride south of the canyon ?

Ta

I guess it depends if you are going to ride the RGA all the way to Menton - I cut it short and after Cayolle, I picked up the 902 south of guillaumes then joined the 202 and cut across to Castellane - they were great roads but I only cut it short because of a lack of time. When I got to Castellane, I headed south and took the southern loop of Verdon and came back out on the northern road, then headed north again before cutting in at Sisteron I think and over to Vercors.

So if you do the rga to menton, then presumablky hug the coast to Nice then north to Grasse, after that you will get to the southern road into Verdon just north of Villaute?

Arsey
02-05-08, 18:55
I guess it depends if you are going to ride the RGA all the way to Menton - I cut it short and after Cayolle, I picked up the 902 south of guillaumes then joined the 202 and cut across to Castellane - they were great roads but I only cut it short because of a lack of time. When I got to Castellane, I headed south and took the southern loop of Verdon and came back out on the northern road, then headed north again before cutting in at Sisteron I think and over to Vercors.

So if you do the rga to menton, then presumablky hug the coast to Nice then north to Grasse, after that you will get to the southern road into Verdon just north of Villaute?

I'm planning on doing the RGA in it's entirety from Thonon Les Bains to Menton,then will head up to Grasse and up the N85 until Castellane.I'll then do the Gorge du Verdon before prob heading up to Grenoble on the rest of the Route Napoleon.

But I've got 2 weeks off and might even head over to Millau/Tarn Gorge afterwards if the weather is good and I'm not bored.

Charlie George
07-05-08, 11:26
I am leaving on the 16th May to try and do the RGA/Route Napoleon if the weather allows The passes were all clear last year by the 14th, but has anyone done it this early and has any advice re alternative routes, clothing etc.

In a perfect world I know that it would be more practical next month but domestic/work committements etc

Then its West over to the Central Massif area. After staying with friends near the Pic de Nore.

:rob

Bateman
07-05-08, 11:35
I am leaving on the 16th May to try and do the RGA/Route Napoleon if the weather allows The passes were all clear last year by the 14th, but has anyone done it this early and has any advice re alternative routes, clothing etc.

In a perfect world I know that it would be more practical next month but domestic/work committements etc

Then its West over to the Central Massif area. After staying with friends near the Pic de Nore.

:rob

I did it in 2006 at the end of May and the col De l'Iseran was closed, which meant finding an alternative route for a fairly big section. i think that from bourg St maurice we headed up towards Moutiers (i think) and then crossed over the Cod De La Madeline which was good, and picked a main road south - I'll need to look at the map as I am at work. It was actually pretty warm for the whole trip.

dadster
07-05-08, 15:26
i,m taking my daughter down to millau area on the 29th of may, will then travel across to gorge du verdon and then north to annecy over any cols that may be open. :thumb