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Showing posts from May, 2016

Bay

Boarder shred fest in the steepsNormaly my posts mention International boarders and the trails that take me between these lines.  Today was slightly different.  Everyone knows that the Swiss Canton of Valais is full of great trails, and until today I thought that it's neighbouring Canton of Vaud was full of bad drivers, Freddie Mercury statues (Montreux), vineyards and a whole heap of money!

However right on the boarder of Valais/Vaud is Bex.  That's pronounced 'bay' in French, not Becks like Posh n Becks for you vrai Anglais.

It doesn't matter what Canton your in, in Switzerland public transport is top notch, and seeing as this place is near a ski town, the all-day travel card for mountain bikers is not actually too expensive at 28chf (€25). 

A little research revealed a whole host of trails, but luckily Timmy was on hand to guide us today which was really nice for me to not have to think about navigation.  Timmy is Fabian Barel's long lost brother...  When he te…

It was about time

Exploring Aosta for the first time in 2016

Thats kind of a lie, we had a few experimental, yeah, experimental is a good word to describe the ski tour's that took place in Aosta Valley this winter.
It was about time to get back there on two wheels and try out some new trails. Me and Wayne, my boss, didn't have any work so we journey'd over to search for more Aosta goodness.  The first objective of the day was achieved quite easily, cappuccino, at which time we also found our gelato stop for post ride refreshment.

So it began as most Aosta rides seem to with a big climb on a quiet road that slowly makes it's way upwards through tiny hamlets, usually a mix of beautiful alpine houses and run down old sheds. Wayne was telling me how it was a burden to sit in an Aosta Valley Freeride minibus for 45 minutes-a-time when doing shuttle days. Didn't sound too bad to me... Lunch stop one was followed by snack stop 2, 3, 4 and 5 and then after a good few hours lunch stop two arriv…

Meanwhile back in the Haute Savoie

A breakdown of early season riding conditions in the steeps and deeps of the Northern French AlpsGood!
At the beginning of May there was still snow on the Peit Blacon Nord between le Planet and le Tour. Me and my Chamvan boss Wayne also found above Servoz and Chalet Ayeres that there was too much snow to be able to drop in from the normal trail head.  Once we were on the trail it super dry, leafy and fresh!  You couldn’t carry too much speed into corners as there wasn’t the grip for late braking manoeuvres.



I was then lucky enough to spend the whole weekend riding at Saleve.  On Saturday morning whilst my friend did some extra University studies in Geneva I took the opportunity to check out some new trails.  What I found was deep leaf cover over cruisey trails, but with some nasty climbs out of them.  One might be worth a repeat with some enduro boys as it finishes in Esserts-Saleve...
In the afternoon I took my first ever ride along the top of the Saleve range with my friend for some nic…

Lean, mean and green

Southern Roadtripping

I’d just come off the top of Europe, Mont Blanc with a 2000 metre powder skiing descent, but Wouter was still after final plan ideas for meeting him, my Dutch guiding buddy somewhere in Provence. GAP was of course at the top of the list, being the most northernly town in the Provence Region, and having some very tasty dry and dusty trails! Read here about last years southern trip that put Finale Ligure to shame.

Even though there is more than 6 days worth of riding in the Gapencais, we wanted to taste something else and I’d seen a nice instagram photo from the VTopo Crew riding on this weird “terre noire” (black earth) stuff earlier in the year that looked very inticing.
The first day down south, my first major bike riding day of 2016 and I thought we’d get everyone going on some trails that I knew from previous trips over by the stunning Lac Serre Poncon.  Sitting having lunch in t-shirt and shorts at the end of April was a great feeling for us Northern Europeans.  …