Here’s our guide to your Pyrenees trip of a lifetime. As with all of our trips, we have options to take on a shorter, less hilly routes which we can adjust for you and advise at the beginning of each day. Our aim is to make you feel as confident and comfortable as possible and get everyone up each pass with as much ease as possible.
Flight to Tolouse
Travel to Arreau vicinity
Rental bike pick up and check in
Arreau - Lac de Cap de Long - Lac Aumar - Arreau
Distance - 49 miles (78.5km)
Climbing - 6678 ft (2035m)
After arrival and settling in on the first day the beauty of the route to Lac de Cap de Long is a great way to start the 4 days of cycling in the Hautes Pyrenees.
After passing through St Lary Soulan, where there’s a number of climbs to ascend, we take the D929 for nearly 23 km at 5.9% average gradient and up to 2161m. Believe us when we say this is worth the effort. The TdF hasn’t been through here due to this part of the Pyrenees being a National Park and Reserve, with tranquility, waterfalls and flora and fauna in abundance.
After a steady start between 3 and 5% we turn right at the town of Fabian and head up the narrower roads and fluctuating gradients towards the lake at the top with the largest reservoir in the Pyrenees. Passing through the switchbacks of the Lacets des Myrtylles the vista opens out as you see the dam in the distance and the finish point. All in all there couldn’t be a better way to start the week off, with the option to visit Lac d’Aumur or Aubert which are even higher.
Arreau - Col de Peyresourde - 007 Airport - Col d'Azet - Col de Portet - Arreau
Distance - 61 miles (98km)
Climbing - 10193 ft (3106m)
A real treat for day 2 on the bike and the chance to relive a TdF stage 17 from 2018 which was a 65 km dash from Bagneres de Luchon to Portet . After climbing the Col de Peyresourde and a cafe stop, the stage begins in earnest. We turn round and take the left turn to Peyregoudes and the 007 airport that was in the film Tomorrow Never Dies.
From here the descent takes us 3/4 the way back down Peyresoude and we turn left to pick up the Col d’Azet at Genos. Only a short one this at 7.4 km but a real stunner. At the top of the pass you can see where you’ve just come from and where you're going to, both inspiring and daunting at the same time. The descent takes us into St Lary and then the route to Col de Portet which peaks at 2215 m. This one is headed for legendary status in TdF history, only used once but destined to test the pros in the coming years. There is no let up in gradient, but the views more than make up for it as we reach the summit and look back to the Aure valley below and the Azet in the distance. A rapid downhill and a casual ride back to Arreau finish off a stunning day .
Arreau - Col d'Aspin - Col du Tourmalet - Horquette Ancizan - Arreau
Distance - 56 miles (91km)
Climbing - 9440 ft (2877m)
The days just seem to get better. Today sees us conquer two of the tours greatest climbs in Col d’Aspin and Col du Tourmalet. Aspin starts half a km from Arreau and winds it way up the mountain side giving you terrific views of the town below and the valley beyond. Not particularly long and even gradients this is a real joy to climb and is a good lead up to the Tourmalet. From the town of Campan, Tourmalet is around 17 km long, starts off with relatively low gradients below 5%, but like all passes there has to be a point where it starts to bite. With around 10 km to go you notice a rise and then it’s push past the ski village of La Mongie and the truly stunning vistas that a pass most used in a Grand Tour offers.
After respite at the top it’s a fast downhill with a stop at La Mongie if needed, passing back through Campan and then a right hand turn just before Col d’Aspin to pick up the Horquette Ancizan. Length is 17 km from Campan at an average of 4.2%, quite undulating, giving you a real chance to enjoy the surroundings of the best side of this beauty. A sweeping finish down the other side and back into Arreau.
Arreau - Pla d'Adet - Col d'Azet - Arreau
Distance - 41 miles (66km)
Climbing - 6153 ft (1875m)
Our final riding day is just short of 41 miles and 6153 feet of climbing taking in Pla d’Adet from St Lary, then back down and up the other side of the Azet form the other day. Respite at the top then down into Genos and Loudenveille back to Arreau. A fitting way to end taking in 2 or 3 mountain passes (depends on what’s left in the tank), 2 different valleys and all that comes with it from the vista in the Hautes Pyrenees.
Check out of accomodation
Transfer back to airport
Flight back to UK
Gallery (Pyrenees 2018)
Cycle Seekers tours include...
Cycle Seekers Tour Jersey
On bike lunch
On board physio
Cycle Seekers tours DO NOT include...
Our unique cycle trips allow you to travel out with us to the destination , giving total piece of mind from start to finish . We’ll make sure everything that’s included is catered for , from the moment we meet till the time comes for you to unfortunately leave us. With 4 years of experience behind us at 3 separate locations we have the knowledge to cater for all that is required on these memorable trips.
Potential trips in 2021...
Based on their own experiences of tackling the toughest climbs that the Cotswolds and Europe have to offer, our team organise everything to make sure your trip is as hassle free as possible to ensure your only focus is cycling.