Mont Ventoux with Diane Vilarem

  • MONT VENTOUX WITH DIANE

    Our adventurous editor, Diane Vilarem takes you on a classic ride

Mt Ventoux? The legendary climb. For whatever reason everyone kept talking about it. “Have you ridden Mt Ventoux yet? It’s awesome” If you google famous Col’s in France this one always pops up high up on the list.

I had to find out why! Could it be even harder than the holy grail of the French Riviera – Col de la Bonette? I love my cycling and I love challenges. Climbing these classic routes is a way for me to explore more in my cycling and to explore my limits too.

There are three ways of ascending the climb; via Bedoin, Sault (same side) or Malaucene. I chose the most famous one, via Bedoin.

Route Information

Stats  123 km  3736 metres

Refreshments & Where to Stay

The route starts in the town of Bedoin, where there are lots of opportunites for all that you need. At the summit, you can enjoy food and refreshments, before heading back down to Bedoin  and a well deserved meal.

Character

It’s one of the greatest climbs in the world – of course, it’s tough and climbs all day long. However, the views and forests that you see along the way, and the vineyards that you cycle alongside – they are all beautiful. It’s a day of cycling to live with you forever.

My Route & Ride

After having spent the night in an excellent local AirBnb in Bedoin we took off at 7am. The first 5-6km are quite easy going through vineyards and open fields. The road is gentle, and it gives you some time to warm up before you arrive in the famous forest area. By the end of the warm-up stretch, there’s a sharp steep left turn, which takes you straight into the forest area. What awaits you here is 10km of consistent +10% climbing with no section to rest or recover! The forest is beautiful and brutal and prepares (or drains) you for the last part of the climb. Once you pass by the hotel/restaurant Chalet Reynard the forest part is over and you are heading into the final part of the climb – the moonland!

The landscape you are riding into after the forest resembles something from another planet, hence the typical moon land expression. The climbing doesn’t stop at this point, the gradient just drops a bit, at least for parts of the climb…. If you are unlucky then this part can be very very windy as well. We were lucky and only had some hard gusts as we closed in on the top.

The last 1.5km of the climb is brutal, with gradients going up and above 10% again. As with most awesome mountains in France, the view from the top is well worth the effort to get up there 😉 . I strongly recommend you to take on this beast, start early in the morning and don’t forget to enjoy the amazing view!

Stay safe and keep attacking those mountains!

Diane  🙂

There are so many images of this ride that I wanted to share with you, unfortunately there simply wasn’t enough room on this one page – so I created a gallery, especially to share my memorial and beautiful day cycling with you 🙂

Click below  for  GPX file & accommodation

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