Haute Route Alps and Haute Route Pyrenees 2018 routes announced
Parcours confirmed for week-long events packed with mythical climbs
Haute Route organisers have announced the routes for next year’s week-long Haute Route Alps and Haute Route Pyrenees events.
The Alpine event is to revert to its traditional north-to-south route, and will use the ski resort of Megève for its Grand Depart, ending up in the seaside town of Nice in the foothills of the Alpes-Maritimes department.
Meanwhile, the Pyrenean event will use the ‘Gateway to the Pyrenees’, Pau, as it’s start and finish town, circulating around some of the most famous climbs in the region.
The two events run almost back-to-back, with the Haute Route Pyrenees first from August 18-24, featuring 20,000m of climbing over 770km in the space of seven days of riding.
Among the 19 major climbs to be tackled are the Aubisque, Soulor, Spandelles and summit finish Hautacam on an epic 122km stage two with 3,900m of ascent, then an ascent of each side of the Col du Tourmalet on stages three and four - the latter of which will also include the Hourquette d’Anzican, and a Portet summit finish at 2,215m.
Stage five is a time trial up the Cap de Long (1,400m of climbing in a 23km stage), before another long day in the saddle on stage six with four famous cols including the Azet, Port de Balès, Peyresourde and Peyragudes. The event then finishes with a 124km roll back to Pau, taking the Col d’Aspin en route.
With one day break, the organisation then shifts over to the Haute Route Alps (August 26 to September 1), getting underway in Megève.
The opening stage takes in a loop that incorporates the Col d’Aravis and Colombière alongside the Col de Romme and Côte de Domancy before heading back up to the ski station. That sets the tone for the week, with six summit finishes planned.
A monster 157km stage two will take in ascents of the Madeleine and Télégraphe after a warm up on the Saises, while the mythical climbs keep coming with the Galibier and Les Deux Alpes on stage three, permeated by a climb up the Col de Sarenne on the backside of Alpe d’Huez, which will be descended.
The Lauteret, Izoard and Saint-Véran make up the challenge on stage four, while riders will get a break of sorts on the stage five 14km time trial to Risoul. This leads straight into a 112km stage to Auron, with the 2,715m Col de la Bonnette coming after the Col du Vars.
Finally, stage seven into Nice represents the longest of the 2018 Haute Route Alps, covering 175km and 3,000m of climbing over the Couillole, St. Raphaël and Vence, before arriving in the seaside town.
As ever, the riders will benefit from Haute Route’s rider support, while classifications will be formed from timed sections on each stage. For more information on the Haute Route and its full calendar of 11 events, go to www.hauteroute.org.
Haute Route Pyrenees 2018: route
Stage 1: Pau - Pau (151km, 2,700m of climbing)
Cols: Labays, Bouesou, Marie-Blanque
Stage 2: Pau - Hautacam (122km, 3,900m)
Cols: Aubisque, Soulor, Spandelles, Hautacam
Stage 3: Argelès-Gazost - Col de Couraduque (117km, 3,300m)
Cols: Lingous, Tourmalet, Couraduque
Stage 4: Argelès-Gazost - Col de Portet (103km, 4,000m)
Cols: Tourmalet, Hourquette-Ancizan, Portet
Stage 5 (ITT): Saint-Lary Soulan - Cap de Long (23km, 1,400m)
Col: Cap de Long
Stage 6: Saint-Lary Soulan - Peyragudes (130km, 3,300m)
Cols: Azet, Port de Balès, Peyresourde, Peyragudes
Stage 7: Peyragudes - Pau (124km, 1,400m)
Haute Route Alps 2018 route
Stage 1: Megève - Megève (111km, 2,900m)
Cols: Aravis, Colombière, Romme, Domancy, Côte 2000
Stage 2: Megève - Col du Télégraphe (157km, 3,650m)
Cols: Saisies, Madeleine, Télégraphe
Stage 3: Valloire - Les 2 Alpes (107km, 3,750m)
Cols: Galibier, Sarenne, Les 2 Alpes
Stage 4: Les 2 Alpes - Saint-Véran (111km, 3,250m)
Cols: Lautaret, Izoard, Saint-Véran
Stage 5 (ITT): Guillestre - Risoul (14km, 900m)
Stage 6: Risoul - Auron (112km, 3,200m)
Cols: Vars, Bonette, Auron
Stage 7: Auron - Nice (175km, 3,000m)
Cols: Couillole, St Raphaël, Vence