On the Valais Cycling Tour roads
Change of scenery for the second day. Direction: Haut-Valais. “I am taking you on a discovery of one of the jewels of the Valais Bike Tour,” Guillaume states proudly as we leave Visp.
The group heads at first in the direction of Zermatt. At Stalden, we suddenly leave the main road to head up a small road punctuated by numerous switchbacks. Now I become more and more curious.
The group agrees to take a break at Törbel. Beth takes the opportunity to walk through the steep winding streets of this characteristic Valais village. “I’m waiting to see Heidi around every corner,” she marvels. Welcome to Switzerland!
We continue onward surrounded by majestic scenery, where larch trees are silhouetted by a backdrop of snowy peaks. We are higher than 2,000m when I finally recognize Moosalp. I came here before on a mountain bike, and another time to ski tour. No traffic, an impressive climb, and pristine nature…I have discovered paradise for the road bike. I promise, I will return.
A long descent takes us into Tourtemagne, then we cross the Pfyn Forest, one of the largest pine forests in central Europe. It is now time to tackle the final climb towards Saint-Luc, the end point of this second stage. Legs are tired but the group enjoys every meter of the ascent, the alternating switchbacks worthy of Alpe d’Huez and welcoming flat sections in a magnificent natural setting.
Today’s stats: 70 km and 2050 m of climbing
Objective of the day: get to Sion before noon. Once in the Rhone Valley, our valiant cyclists immediately tackle the climb towards Crans-Montana. Several roads lead to this famous mountain resort where Laurent Fignon won a stage of the Tour de France in 1984. Today, they choose to climb via Sierre and Mollens.
Once there, two other challenges await: the climb to Anzère and the ascension towards Mayens de Zour. The descent into Sion is on the horizon. In the final kilometres through the vineyards, Guillaume had prepared one last surprise: a small detour by his secret little lanes.
Today’s stats: 75 km and 2200 m of climbing
“From the vineyards to the high mountains while passing through beautifully preserved villages, I would have never imagined so much diversity in only 3 days on the bike,” exclaims Beth, laughing as she arrives in the Valais capital. “When do we go again?” As for me, I’m ready. But next time on my bike!
Alain Rumpf and Grand Tours Project
Cyclist, photographer, and writer, Alain Rumpf lives in the Swiss Alps. He is also the Chief Cycling Officer at Grand Tours Project, organizing biking holidays in the Alps. It is a way for him to promote cycling not only as a sport, but also as a healthy lifestyle close to nature.