Come and ride the Pyrénées Vélo Le Cloiser has everything you could want.

If you have been to Majorca for your annual cycling getaway you maybe thinking about somewhere different to ride in 2020 but are not sure where to go. If you are the organiser you maybe a little apprehensive about going elsewhere, you know how everything works for your Majorca trip. Organising a trip with a new destination will obviously have its concerns.Let us help with the questions you may have. How do we get there, what about airport transfers, where to stay, accommodation & food and most importantly routes where to ride.

How to get there.

The easiest and quickest way to get to the Pyrénées is to fly. There are 4 airports running from east to west across the Pyrénées, Carcassonne, Toulouse, Lourdes and Biarritz. The airports of Carcassonne, Lourdes and Biarritz do not have daily flights to/from the UK which can narrow your options. For example Lourdes airport connections to the UK are via Stansted airport only and the route is operated by one carrier.

Toulouse international airport however, is served by many carriers from many destinations in the UK with many flights arriving daily.

The transfer from Toulouse International to Vélo Le Closier is around 1hr:15mins around 1hr:45mins to Biarritz and 40 minutes to Lourdes and 2hrs to Carcassonne. Vélo Le Closier can provide transfers from any of the airports across the Pyrénées.  Car rental is relatively cheap alternative for smaller groups.

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Location, Location, Location

The Pyrénées have featured every year in the TDF since 1910 and for very good reason. The climbs are tough enough to test even the fittest of elite cyclists. The Pyrénées is natural barrier between France and Spain which means they run many hundred Kilometres from east to west. So where is the best area to be located for a cycling holiday.

Before moving to the Pyrénées we bought Simon Warren’s 100 greatest cycling climbs of the Tour de France and studied the Pyrénées section.

Vélo Le Closier is in the village of La Barthe de Neste which is just south of Lannemazan at the bottom of a valley and very close to the autoroute with easy and speedy access to the airports of Toulouse, Lourdes, Pau, Carcassonne and Biarritz.

Our location means that most of these cols can be linked up to make longer rides with options to shorten the ride and you are not riding an out and back route. Heading north from La Barthe de Neste takes you into wonderful rolling countryside which allows for easy day options.

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All of the rides start directly from the house and are available from us in .gpx format and we can propose a daily riding itinerary put together with local knowledge.

Accommodation

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As mentioned above location is very important. But equally important is the accommodation in which you will stay. There is still dormitory accommodation to be found in the Pyrénées which is fine in the mountain refuges but may not be the best option for a cycling group. Also “Cycling Friendly” accommodation often means that there is a lockup area for your bike and maybe a track-pump.

Vélo Le Closier can accommodate up to 15 people within it’s vast 400 mtr2 of space. All of the bedrooms are ensuite and spacious. The house also has communal space inside should the weather become inclement. The games room has sofas and pool table and the petit salon provides a quiet area should you wish to read quietly. Outside there are 2 patio areas with chairs.

We have a fully fitted bike shed with racking for 14 bikes and tools including torque wrenches, allen keys, star drives and a track pump. We carry a small stock of universal spares like brake and gear cables, brake blocks and spare inner tubes. We also have Cervélo and Scott carbon fibre bikes for hire.

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Food is also another consideration. Lots of the B&B accommodation don’t provide meals and dependent upon the location restaurants maybe some distance away.

We provide half board accommodation which starts with a generous continental breakfast with options of porridge and or eggs (poached or scrambled). There are also bananas and other fruit which you may take with you on your ride.

Upon return from your ride there will be a homemade cake tea and or coffee and in the evening a 2 or 3 course evening meal which includes wine or beer.

What’s the riding like?

If you haven’t ridden any grand tour climbs then you are in for a big surprise.  Whilst Majorca is very popular cycling destination it isn’t in the same league as the Pyrénées. In general the Pryrenean climbs are longer and steeper than those in Majorca and with the exception of the Tourmalet there will be significantly less traffic.

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To put the climbs in context the two largest Mallorcan climbs Puig major is 14.5km at an average of 6% the Sa Calobra climb is 10.3km and averages 6.6%.

There are several climbs within easy reach of Vélo Le Closier over 14.5 km the obvious being the Col de Tourmalet from St Marie de Campan 17.2km average 7.3% and the others being Station de Cap Nestes – Bas-Nistos 18 km average 6%, col de Portet 16km average 8.7%, lac de cap du long 22.6km average 6%.

There are also many climbs around 10km some of these being Col d’Aspin 12km average 6.4%, Col d’Azet from St Lary 10.7km average 7.3% and from Genos 7.4km average 8.3%.

The roads are generally traffic free and of good quality and the drivers are courteous and considerate.

    

Most groups have a wish list of climbs they wish to conquer when considering the Pyrénées. We can provide a ride itinerary or route suggestions for your group to ensure that your time here in the Pyrénées is best used. We have many routes available in .gpx format for Garmin or similar systems.

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If you are considering a new challenge let us help you organise your 2020 cycling break to the Pyrénées. We can provide airport transfers, superb quality half board accommodation, excellent food, bike hire and some of the most famous Tour de France climbs in the Pyrénées directly from our door.