Mont Ventoux Region
The area surrounding the iconic cycling region of Mont Ventoux know as the Vaucluse includes the famous cycling towns of Bedoin, Malaucène and Sault, which all have plenty of bike hotel, rental accommodation, gite and campsites. These towns are the three starting points from where its possible to climb Mont Ventoux. Mont Ventoux sticking out at 1912 meters is visible from miles around and has earned the nickname as the ‘Beast of Provence’ The name Mont Ventoux derives from the French word for windy, which suitably describes the ‘Mistral’ wind that frequently blows down the Rhone Valley.
Aside from the Mont Ventoux, which dominates the horizon the surrounding region is rolling fields flowing down to the flat Rhone Valley. The landscape is littered with vine yards producing high quality Cote du Rhone wines. Many of the picturesque villages occupy fortified positions and are built into and from the rocky landscape. Beautiful mountain bike and roads criss cross the beautiful region, offering the opportunity for leisurely rides stopping in various bars and restaurants along the way.
Road Cycling Mont Ventoux
Mont Ventoux is one of the more famous peaks used by the Tour du France, frequently used as a stage finish, but also as a mountain col which is then descended by a different route. The summit can be climbed via three different routes a feat when achieved by a cyclist gains him access to the prestigious Club des Cinglés. The most famous single climb starts in Bedoin, and rises a challenging 1617meters in altitude is 21.8km long at an average of 8.9%. The oter climbs start from Malaucene and Sault. Each climb starts in the relatively sheltered pine forests before emerging into the iconic exposed lunar landscape close to the summit.
Cyclists often pay their respect to the memorial of British rider Tom Simpson who tragically died close to the summit in 1967 during the last few hundred metres for a Mont Ventoux stage finish of the Tour du France.
Mountain Biking Mont Ventoux
The mountain biking on and around the Mont Ventoux is some of the most beautiful in France. The rugged upper slopes of the mountain lead down to think forests and then to the rolling hills and vine yards of the upper Rhone Valley. Trails are well sign posted and everywhere. For the foo hardy, the Mont Ventoux may be climbed four times in a day, with the final assent off road via a mountain bike trail. Families will love the quiet roads and trails in the valley linking linking a network of beautiful villages and stunning river valleys.
Mont Ventoux Bike Rides
Bedon – Mont Ventoux – Distance 21.5km, 283m – 1912m, 1639m of height gain, average gradient 7.6%
Malaucene – Mont Ventoux – Distance 21.2km, 377m – 1912m 1535m of height gain, average gradient 7.2%
Sault – Mont Ventoux – Distance 25.7km, 760m – 1912m, 1152m of height gain, average gradient 4.5%
Club des Cingles – The ultimate cycling club membership awarded to those that complete the three classic assents of Mont Ventoux in one day.
Mont Ventoux Events
Tour De France – One of the iconic climbs of the Tour de France.
Santini GF Mont Ventoux – Mont Ventoux edition of the Gronfondo series, with various cycling events including the signature race of 135km with 3300 of hight gain.
La Haute Route Mont Ventoux – Early October Three day event each ending at the summit of Mont Ventoux with 270km and over 7500metre of climbing.
Ventourist Mont Ventoux – Mid June – Belgian charity event, where cyclists try to climb the Mont Ventoux as many times as possible
Ventouxman – Triathlon Mont Ventoux – Early June – 2km Swim Lake Piolenc near Orange, 90km ride to Bedoin and over the summit of Mont Ventoux and a 20km run from the Mont Serein ski station 6km below the summit.