Riding Through the Heart of the Alps — in 36 Hours

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Think you have a tough week ahead of you? Well, it’s probably not as hard as what Brit Mike Cotty is taking on in just the first 36 hours of August 5 and 6.

Starting early Monday morning in central France, Cotty is attempting to ride non-stop through the heart of the French Alps from Evian Les Bains to Nice, a distance of 414 miles that includes a jaw-dropping 17 alpine passes.

This murder’s row of mountains includes the Col de la Colombière, Madeleine, Glandon, Croix de Fer, Télégraphe, Galibier, Izoard, Vars, Bonette and Madone. All told it’s over 52,000 feet elevation gain, including five cols over 6,500 feet.

Add it all up and it’s comparable to four mountain stages of the Tour de France or close to scaling Mount Everest twice — non-stop.

Why put oneself through so much pain? Cotty calls adventures such as these moments of, “escapism, intrigue and respect to the high mountains that is the true inspiration for such a ride. Every rider is unique in their motivation. The desire to discover both physical and mental limits in search of new experiences comes from deep within. Life is not a race, it’s a journey. Sometimes on familiar roads and other times following a path into the unknown.”

You can see photos from this ambitious ride on the Mavic Facebook Page, or scroll down to find real time tracking information. There is also a great gallery of sights he’ll encounter along the way. Good luck, Mike.

Route Overview & Profile

Col Details

Live Tracking

Live tracking for the challenge will be hosted by MapMyTracks.

Event Page: www.MikeCotty.co.uk- Includes Live Tracking
Live Tracking URL: www.MapMyTracks.com

Live data that will be displayed on the tracking page includes:

  • Position on map
  • Distance ridden
  • Distance to go

By clicking into the rider profile page (below the map / course profile) viewers will be able to see:

  • Duration
  • Speed
  • Elevation start / finish – Elevation gain / loss
  • Total ascent / descent

Please note: Due to battery life the tracker will be mounted in the accompanying Mavic service vehicle therefore realtime speed is not a direct indication of rider speed at all times.

Scheduling

Start Date: August 5th
Start Time: 8.00am GMT / 9.00am CET Start Town: Evian Les Bains
Finish Town: Nice
Distance: 414 miles
Elevation: 52,000 feet
Cols: 17
Estimated Time: 36 hours

This schedule is based on favourable weather conditions. In the event of bad weather the start may shift from the 5th to the 6th or 7th. Updates will be communicated in advance by @cottydale on Twitter if the proposed schedule is delayed.

Riding Through the Heart of the Alps — in 36 Hours Gallery
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Riding Through the Heart of the Alps — in 36 Hours

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Riding Through the Heart of the Alps — in 36 Hours

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Riding Through the Heart of the Alps — in 36 Hours

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Riding Through the Heart of the Alps — in 36 Hours

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Col Details

That's a whole lot of climbing.
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Riding Through the Heart of the Alps — in 36 Hours

Some roads by day, others by night.
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Riding Through the Heart of the Alps — in 36 Hours

Cotty will spot plenty of road paint on his route.
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Riding Through the Heart of the Alps — in 36 Hours

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Riding Through the Heart of the Alps — in 36 Hours

Let's hope the sun shines on Cotty.
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Riding Through the Heart of the Alps — in 36 Hours

The beast that is the Col du Galibier.
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Riding Through the Heart of the Alps — in 36 Hours

The infamous Col du Glandon is on the route.
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Les Alpes Route

That's a long day in the saddle.
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Riding Through the Heart of the Alps — in 36 Hours

Along the way Cotty will face the famed Turini descent.
riding-through-the-heart-of-the-alps-%e2%80%94-in-36-hours
About the author: Jason Sumner

An avid cyclist, Jason Sumner has been writing about two-wheeled pursuits of all kinds since 1999. He’s covered the Tour de France, the Olympic Games, and dozens of other international cycling events. He also likes to throw himself into the fray, penning first-person accounts of cycling adventures in British Columbia, Belgium, Brazil, Costa Rica, France, and Peru among many others. Sumner, who joined the RoadBikeReview.com / Mtbr.com staff in January, 2013, has also done extensive gear testing and edited a book on cycling tips. When not writing or riding, the native Coloradoan can be found enjoying the great outdoors with his wife Lisa.


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