Spectating/Riding TDF Alpe d'Huez

vosadrian
Posts: 668
Joined: Fri Mar 22, 2013 4:58 pm

Spectating/Riding TDF Alpe d'Huez

Postby vosadrian » Fri Mar 16, 2018 3:00 pm

Hi all,

I am very lucky to be taking my family (wife + kids 13 & 15) to France in the July school holidays and as luck would have it, we will be in the Alps region for a few days when the TDF is passing through. We are all cycling fans so are keen to make as much of the experience as possible. We have yet to book accommodation but will try to do this ASAP as I am sure it will be busy. We plan to have a hire car.

I want to consider the feasibility of a few things and appreciate any advice:

* Watch the stage finish of Alpe d'Huez. I believe this will be possible, and I am not sure how much we could replicate the advice here: https://www.dcrainmaker.com/2013/07/spe ... rance.html . That is a few years old, but is it a reasonable guide as to how to do it? Could we just park somewhere as close to the foot of the climbs as possible early in the morning and walk to a good vantage point?

* Go to a stage start (we will be near other TDF stages, so does not have to be in the Alps). I believe we have a better chance of seeing/meeting riders at a start than a finish. I assume we could park nearby and walk to the start. Not sure how early we should arrive.

* Ride Alpe d'Huez. This will be the tough one. We are not taking bikes, and I doubt we could transport 4 bikes in the hire car from a bike rental place that is not close, so we would have to hire the bikes close by. I was thinking of hiring 2 E-bikes for the kids and road bikes my wife and I (we have ridden the Stelvio before so we know we could do it). The difficulty will be getting bikes and then picking a time that is friendly to ride the climb. I am thinking the day of the TDF stage is going to be difficult (but may be a great way to get to a good spectating location??), so the day after would be best, but I am not sure if the road will be packed with traffic and if we could even get bikes. Any advice appreciated for this.

I am not sure if anyone here has done it before and can help.

Cheers,

Adrian
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scirocco
Posts: 383
Joined: Thu Sep 29, 2011 7:34 pm

Re: Spectating/Riding TDF Alpe d'Huez

Postby scirocco » Sat Mar 17, 2018 3:09 pm

I'd suggest going on the Tripadvisor France forum and asking the question there. There are a few forum regulars like gizmo38 and LeChateaudOz who live in Bourg, Grenoble or Oz d'Oisans etc. and they usually pop up when questions like this get asked.

I've seen TDF finishes in other places but not the Alpe so don't have any specific local knowledge. But I'm sure it will be bedlam.

BugsBunny
Posts: 345
Joined: Wed Aug 20, 2014 9:06 pm

Re: Spectating/Riding TDF Alpe d'Huez

Postby BugsBunny » Mon Mar 19, 2018 7:25 pm

This site should give you heaps of info on bike hire and accommodation:
http://bike-oisans.com/?lang=en

I rented a bike in Bourg De Oisan. Alp D Huez would be great to do with the family. I rented from this shop: https://www.cyclehuez.com

Its a nice climb and the bike shop should give you a suggested route to warm up before you hit the start of AlpDHuez as it hits double digit gradient almost immediately.

vosadrian
Posts: 668
Joined: Fri Mar 22, 2013 4:58 pm

Re: Spectating/Riding TDF Alpe d'Huez

Postby vosadrian » Tue Mar 20, 2018 3:20 pm

Thanks for the info guys.

I think bike hire will be difficult. cyclehuez.com specifically says that minimum hire for the TDF is 5 days. 4 bikes for 5 days to ride one climb for a few hours is outside my budget. I was happy to do a day hire... maybe 2, but 5 will set me back too much. Also I don't think they do E-bikes for the kids.

I have sent an enquiry to https://www.huezbikehire.com/en/ They do not specifically say anything about minimum rental times for the TDF and they have E bikes... but I suspect they will have a similar minimum days hire limit. I will see what they say!
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