After some complex coordination, some speeding fines and lugging bags on trains Edd, Oli and I converged on Montreux to kick off the Alps Tour 2015.
The first ride of the trip saw us jump on the last train of the day to get us to the top of Rochers de Naye - at 2,000m we were in for a great start and a sharp wake up call!
After the 38˚C of Montreux the weather soon changed for the worse and we found ourselves riding way above the clouds in chilly and wet conditions - and wet slippy trails to keep us on our toes.
The first disc gets very reluctantly binned by Edd, and we work out how to properly fit three bikes, three sets of gear and three guys into a one series BMW before we head off up over the Grand Saint Bernard pass into Italy.
It’s a beautifully scenic drive over the pass.
As soon as we arrived in La Thuille the trail maps were out and we had a plan for the afternoon’s riding in place.
The view from the room - the road down into La Thuille, and oh, they had a pet wolf.
It’s been a long, hot 1,000m climb, but the descent (and about a thousand hikers) is just around the corner.
A quick five minute break at the top to take in the views before heading off for the descent back down into town.
Huge pizza and gallons of coke before heading back up again for the afternoon.
On the Enduro World Series course - still taped out from the previous week’s race.
Back into France again and a one night stop in La Rosier to try out the trails there. Meh!
Goofing around and Edd interfering with stuffed toy animals.
The view from our room across to where we’ll be riding tomorrow - Les Arcs.
A busted shoulder put me out for the day so I chilled out in the valley and met Edd and Oli for lunch at Sainte-Foy-Tarentaise for the ‘Best Burger Ever. Fact’. Although my Crudo di San Daniele was better.
Oli took a bad smash to the head so we shipped him off to the hospital to get stitched up - a nice 4 hour wait to think about what he had done. Still, he was happy with the second place on Strava he just got - on a blind first time run too!
We met up with Adam, Glen and Mark in Méribel for the second week - the weather turned cold and wet again but at least we had a big chalet to go back to, with a washing machine, and a whole drying room!
Cleaning up, winding down and checking out bruises over a few beers at the end of the day.
When it’s pissing down outside and too miserable to ride what do you do?
Crack open the scotch and watch motor racing.
Mark and Glen doing us proud in the kitchen.
The short walk into the village and the view from the balcony.
Descending off Le Verdet at about 2,300m.
Oli going large off the roof of a hut on one of the red runs.
A few well earned beers and the cheesiest pizza ever for lunch in Brides Les Bains
Edd turns on Stealth Mode™ on himself and we just follow the bike.
Edd, have you ever though about going tubeless?
Some studious map reading and a hot coffee in Brides Les Bains.
The stream gap at the end of the ‘Family’ black run - Edd goes first.
Drinks at the end of the last day - shattered, sore but happy…