Alps for a long weekend

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  • Alps for a long weekend
  • ianv

    Fly to Lyon or better still Grenoble, Bourg d’Oisans (50 mins from Grenoble). Ride deux alpes and maybe alp d’huez as well.


    Fly to Turin, alpi bike resorts (Bardonecchia/sauze d’Oulx) approx 1 hr from Turin (I think)

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    Evening all…

    Got a bit of time off work over the summer and thinking about popping my Alpine cherry with a visit to the Alps (or somewhere else with big mountains).

    Where would be top of your recommendation list to enjoy some good trails (mainly lift assisted)?

    Not looking at full on DH ring twitching descents but some good flowy memory making stuff.

    So… where would you suggest which is good for a long weekend?

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    Ianv – cheers, is it case of hiring a car once you are at Lyon (Grenoble doesn’t seem to operate during summer) or is there a way of transfering.

    Is it actually easier to drive over (I live about 3 hours from Channel Tunnel)


    With the crossing, tolls and petrol, it will cost about £150 each way to drive!! It is 8 hrs on the French side.
    If there is a bunch of you, then drive. Just you, fly and hire a car.

    You may find a group from here going you could tag along with.

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    Just looking at flights and Easyjet seems cheaper than Ryanair (Who wants £100 for taking a bike)

    Premier Icon cr500dom

    I used to regularly do Meribel from Calais in 8 hrs in the Van.

    I got so fed up with the hassle and time wasting at airports, it was as quick to drive down there as it was to:

    drive to airport, park, get bus, check in, security, wait, go to gate, wait, board plane, wait, flight, land, wait, leave plane, wait for baggage, exit airport, check in with hire car company, sort car, drive for another 2 hours, reach destination.

    If there is more than one person and decent amount of Luggage the balance sways even further towards just driving IME 8)

    Mates, music, roadtrip on decent roads, Lift assisted bike stuff at the end of it – whats not to like ?

    Premier Icon mugsys_m8

    Bushwacked: Grenoble (5 km from where I sit in my kitchen :D) is no good in the summer for UK. Easyjet stop around April time. Lyon adds about an hour. Geneva would make more sense for an ‘alpine’ biking weekend and you’ll have way more transfer options.


    Morzine has to be the choice for the simplest introduction to Alps mtbing. Loads of varied trails, clearly marked, lots of access (lifts) and a huge British contingent to help out – assuming you’re not fluent in French / Italian etc…).

    If you’re going on your own pay for one of the packages that include transfers. If there’s three or more then drive. Time wise it’s not much different.

    Premier Icon andytherocketeer

    Long drive just for a weekend. If driving, I’d save a decent chunk of driving hours and hit somewhere a bit closer to Calais (Vosges perhaps?).

    Or if hopping on a plane, I’d pick a handy airport, and rent a bike for 2 days. Geneva makes a bit of sense. So does Innsbruck (zero transfers – access Nordkette direct from the city centre). Depends what kind of riding you want to do.

    If you’re going to Morzine (or Les Gets) for the first time I think you’ll need a guide to find your way around unless you just want to smash out runs on the downhill tracks. I’ve been loads and still get proper lost when exploring.

    Personally I now prefer Rivierabike in Molini or Finale Freeride – both in the Italian Maritime Alps. Guided van assisted riding on tonnes of natural never to be forgotten trails. Bit quieter than Morzine though. Riviera may have transfers if you’re in a group or hire a car and drive 90 mins from Nice. Finale is about an hour from Genoa. We did an awesome long weekend in Molini a couple of weeks ago.

    Molini riding could be a baptism of fire for some, way harder than riding a huge bike down a groomed Morzine piste in my opinion. Not sure I would call them “flowy” overall though, as per the OP. But, overall, the best collection of trails I have ridden.

    I’ve been out there for a long weekend, flying obviously.

    For a long weekend I’m be tempted to fly and hire a bike, Chamonix and PdS areas are both only a 1hr, 25 euro shuttle from Geneva. Deux Alpes is further away, but has some nice easy bikepark stuff.


    Verbier’s amazing and has it all. Highly recommend dropping them a line at (then extending your time off to a full week, or better still two).

    OK, Molini is a bit technical but I think it still has flow. I’m thinking Fantasy. Ultimate flowey (less rider input required) for me is Finale di Ligure. But I think wherever you go you need a guide the first time out in order to maximise your fun. And being on the riviera you stand less chance of getting bad weather. I’ve had full-on 7 day mud fests in PDS, which was still great fun.

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    Finale has always appealed.


    Molini is superb. It has tons of flow.

    I have been several times.

    Long weekend is easy.
    Easyjet nice.
    hire a car. Molini in just over an hour.

    email Mark @
    he does shuttles per day/ride so is totally flexible. always some fun locals to ride with on his van…
    and a B&B to stay in..

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    Freeridenick – how tech is it? What would you compare it to back home?

    fort william but a lot steeper 🙂


    I would say it is average (there is some real tech stuff).

    I always describe it as a much longer surrey hills with a few more rocks thrown in, ie totally ace!

    More flow than a lot of the alps trails you find in Verbier, Chamonix etc. but certainly not as steep.


    there is some pretty tech stuff like nero nero, faceplant, agrifolia – more like DH tracks.

    but all rideable on a trail bike.


    If it is a short trip (or even if it’s not)choose an independent operator who can give you plenty of advice, trail suggestions and help planning to make life easier. Better still, get in touch and see what Meribel and the 3 Valleys have to offer (flowing single track, amazing enduro single track descents through the woods and no queues…)

    Have a good trip either way.

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