Last Updated on Thursday, 10 October 2013 18:11
"An awe inspiring route from Lake Geneva to Trieste, with awe inspiring stats: 1180kms, 40 cols and 20,922m of ascent. We'll give you 9 days for it!!"
Maybe you have done the Raid Pyrenean, done the Raid Alpine, even branched out and gone for the Raid Corsica... what is next?!
Well, for Marmot Tours the natural progression of things led us to the Raid Dolomites, also known as the Raid Alpine Leman Adriatique (not to be confused with the normal 'Raid Alpine'), which starts in Thonon Les Bains, France, and finishes in Trieste, Italy. This is a brand new itinerary for us in 2013.
Why this route? It is stunning obviously, and it takes you over the Alps through not only Italy, as the name would suggest, but also France and Switzerland. The statistics associated with this Raid are sufficiently awe inspiring or terrifying depending on how you are feeling when you read them: 1180kms and 40 cols of which 16 are over 2000m high! Total ascent 20,922m - yep, thats a lot.
Functioning in the same way as most Raid challenges, you have a Raid 'carnet' that must be stamped at 6 official control points along the route and at the end of the trip, succesful Raiders are given a certificate and medal by the organisers, the cycle club in Thonon Les Bains (Lake Geneva). Obviously the medal is all very good to have, though we can't pretend that it is enough motivation in itself to get you up these climbs!!!
The route of this Raid is truly spectacular and takes in some monstrous cols: The Simplon, The San Bernardino (over 31kms of climbing but at a lovely average of 5.4%) and the Splugan are the first ones topping 2000m. The Stelvio features later, (do all these big cols begin with 'S'?), which at 2758m high is infamous as the highest paved mountain pass in Europe, frequently featuring in the Giro d'Italia. (Incidentally, Top Gear also voted it one of the 'greatest driving roads in the world' - must be something to do with the 48 hairpins on the Eastern side?). It becomes evident that the Italian Alps are indeed very large, as col after col tops the 2000m mark: Sella, Pordoi, Valparola, Giau and the Tre Cime di Lavaredo (3 peaks of Lavaredo) from the summit of which you have a magnificent panoramic view of the Dolomites. It is reputed to have a 17% section on this climb, so you will have earned the magnificent views!
If you want to visit the Dolomites, but do not have 10 days to spare, then our Dolomites Minibreak may be the holiday for you.
Dates and Prices
Mon 30 June - Thurs 10 July
Mon 14 July - Thurs 24 July
Mon 1 Sept - Thurs 11 Sept
Costs for all trips: £1700 (twin share basis), starting at Geneva Airport and ending at Trieste Airport. Single supplement £300 [To be arranged on booking. This supplement only applies if you are booking alone and would like to guarantee your own room for the holiday. If you are happy to share with someone of the same gender then there is no need to pay this supplement.]
Flights are not included but can be picked up very cheaply if booked in advance. Arrival airport Geneva, departure airport Venice Marco Polo.
Allow about £200 for lunches and daytime drinks that are not included (outlined below). There are no other local payments or hidden costs. Please note that we offer a 5% discount if you book more than 6 months before the departure date. We also offer group and loyalty discounts. As this trip passes through Switzerland you may want to bring along some CHF (max £50 worth). Most places, but not all, accept euros.
If your currency isn't GBP £, then you may find the Caxton FX currency calculator useful.
This price includes:
9 days supported rides. Route notes, GPS files and colour maps. Entrance to the official "Raid Alpine Thonon Trieste". Airport Transfers (at specified times). Medical and Mechanical support from 2 vehicles. 10 nights accommodation. 10 evening meals with table wine. 10 substantial breakfasts. Cycling snacks and fruit during the ride. Certificate and medal on successful completion of the challenge.
NB. There will also be included a freebie Marmot Tours pack: Raid Challenge musette bag, Marmot Tours water bottle and Raid Dolomites velopac (waterproof transparent mobile/money holder) for each client. Raid Dolomites jerseys are available to purchase either before or on the trip (contact us to add the price to your invoice) - see our Merchandise section for jersey piccies.
Why choose Marmot Tours for your Raid Dolomites?
In a nutshell, we hope that you will come with us on the Raid Dolomites because you have enjoyed our product elsewhere, and would like to take on a new challenge with the level of support you know you can expect from Marmot Tours, or because you like the sound of our approach to cycling holidays from our website.
As usual, we will be on hand to assist with travel arrangements and queries prior to the trip, and during the trip you can also expect the following:
- we cater for various dietary requirements and supplement your breakfasts with wholesome cereals and fruit to give you that kick start in the morning (continental breakfasts aren't always the best for cyclists!)
- we use small friendly and family run hotels that know us and our needs (particularly regarding cyclists), and who make every effort to make your trip comfortable and easy
- we will limit our group size to 20 so you get the benefits of being with enough other cyclists to find others who cycle at your pace and to have a good laugh en route, but also so that you are not just 'one' in a sea of faces who never get to know anyone else in the group, or your leaders.
- we always have 2 support vehicles, driven by members of the Marmot Tours team. The front van offers support to the speedier cyclists in the group, plus makes sure that everyone's bags are at the hotel before they arrive. The back van stays on the road with the second half of the group ensuring that they have support for as long as it takes for them to complete the days ride. This means that we can have a group with mixed cycling experience and different paces, and still offer everyone the same, high level of support. It also means that in the case of any emergencies or mechanicals, a van is never far away.
- We provide GPS notes (.gpx or .tcx) and comprehensive route cards with colour maps, altitude profiles, detailed directions, information of places to stop for food and the odd bit of local / historical information.
- One driver will always be a bike mechanic so help is on hand for any problems en route (though it is helpful if you are independent as regards punctures).
Marmot Tours has been running road cycling holidays since its conception in 2001. James has been in the leisure industry for even longer and so you can be sure that we will not overlook any aspect of your trip, from the riding, to the travel arrangements, to the accommodation.