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Fitness
Road biking

Bedoin to Rousillon

Road biking · Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur
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Macs Adventure Verified partner  Explorers Choice 
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    Photo: Angus Smith, Macs Adventure
Map / Bedoin to Rousillon
400 600 800 1000 m km 10 20 30 40 50 60 70

A day of mixed landscapes as you ride into the heart of the Luberon Valley. Start the day cycling through vineyards and orchards, then wind through the stunning Gorge de la Nesque, complete with a series of natural arches located deep in the wilderness of Provence. Finish the day with amongst magnificent red ochre sandstone cliffs with far reaching views across the Luberon - perfect for a post-ride panoramic refreshment.

difficult
73.2 km
5:21 h
1008 m
1000 m

Leaving view of Mont Ventoux head towards Villes sur Auzon where it's your last chance to refuel before tackling the Gorge de la Nesque, so please do take advantage of any facilties you need as there are no shops, toilets or cafes once you leave Villes sur Auzon.

The Gorge de la Nesque has a shallow incline and allows the legs to build up a steady rythym as you ascend towards the hilltop town of Sault (around a 22km through the gorge). Rugged, remote road cycling at its best, there was once a  project in the 19th century to build a railway along the bottom of the Gorges de la Nesque, but it was subsequently abandoned. The only road running right through the canyon is the D942, which opened in 1920.

Reaching the hilltop town of Sault you can relax over a long lunch and most of the climbing out of the way. Leaving Sault you'll have around another 10km of climbing before a long, long sweeeping desecent to the Rousillon.

Situated in the heart of one of the biggest ochre deposits in the world, Roussillon is famous for its magnificent red cliffs and ochre quarries.  The pigment is now only quarried in the nearby town of Goult. You can buy all shades of pigment powders for mixing paints and the paintshops are well worth a visit just for the vibrant display of colours if nothing else.

Author’s recommendation

When you arrive in Roussillon I would definitely recommend  that you take the time to stroll around the picturesque maze of streets and squares. The ochre façades of the houses are magnificent. Shades vary subtly from light yellow to dark red, set off by the brightly painted shutters and doors. If you have time visit the Ochre Trail to view the amazing rock formations.

outdooractive.com User
Author
Jo Payne
Updated: August 03, 2018

Difficulty
difficult
Technique
Stamina
Experience
Landscape
Highest point
827 m
Lowest point
213 m
Best time of year
Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec

Safety information

Before starting your ride it’s always worth inspecting your bike for any damage.

Check for any damage to the frame, components or wheels. Ensure there are no loose cables and that the tyres are inflated and the brakes are working. Always wear a helmet when cycling.

If you are doubtful of the condition of your hire bike please call the office or the local bike hire on the number provided in your information pack.

Always be prepared to cycle through a change of weather conditions and do check for any local weather warnings before cycling.

Do remember to ride on the right hand side of the road and whilst drivers in France are respectful of the 'velo', please do be mindful of other road users at all times, obeying local road signs. The road does narrow in parts so please take on bends and when descending, do so with caution

Equipment

Besides cycling in the kit you are used too, we'd also suggest taking the essentials of water bottle(s), nutrition, an extra layer, cash/credit cards and mobile together with emergency telephone numbers.

Always wear a helmet and pack a spare tube, puncture repair kit, tyre levers and handpump. You may also like to take a multi-tool.

Tips, hints and links

This ride is available on: SGRCMVP

Turn-by-turn directions

If you are starting from Crillon, please ride into Bedoin to start this ride.

If you have been staying at the Hotel des Pins, turn right out of the hotel and take the next right. Cycle up to the cross roads where you will join this route 1km in.

0.00km - Start your day at the Convent, on the D213, and cycle STRAIGHT ON away from Bedoin in the direction of Flassan for almost 5 kms.

4.90km - At the Stop sign TURN RIGHT on the D19 to Flassan.

6.10km - Arriving in the village you'll arrive at a T-junction, TURN RIGHT, and it's downhill all the way to Villes sur Auzon!

There are places to get coffee, public toilets and a tap in Auzon. Fill up bottles here, you have a long climb ahead with no more facilities.

10.60km - At the T-junction TURN RIGHT on to the one-way system and follow it around for 300m. Then BEAR RIGHT on the D942 to Sault. After another 100m TURN RIGHT for Monieux, Gorges de la Nesque.

Continue on the D942, slowly climbing and contouring for the next 19km up the stunning gorge.

29.70km - Arrive at the summit, a great spot for a break. After stopping continue STRAIGHT ON, towards Sault, passing Monieux on the way.

37.20km - At the stop sign TURN RIGHT for Sault and after 1.5kms TURN LEFT and start climbing up to the town. At the 2nd hairpin bend BEAR RIGHT, onto Rue de l'Hopital, and continue STRAIGHT ON into the narrow streets. Then TURN LEFT on Rue du Barda and TURN RIGHT up to the church.

There are public toilets by the church and the opportunity to fill water bottles. Sault has many cafes and restaurants, some very popular with cyclists.

40.20km - Descend from the church, down Rue du Club, and continue STRAIGHT ON down to rejoin the main road.

41.10km - At the Stop sign go STRAIGHT ON, crossing the bridge, on the D943 to St Jean. Continue on here for just under 20 kms.

60.70km - The road you're on bends to the left but BEAR RIGHT, to Lioux, and go STRAIGHT ON at the next small crossroads. After 2 kms Lioux is signposted to the left but go STRAIGHT ON to Joucas and Gordes. You will see a long ridge of limestone cliffs to your left.

64.80km - At the junction in La Combe go STRAIGHT ON on the D60.

66.50km - At the Stop sign TURN LEFT to Roussillon, on the D4 and at the next Stop sign go STRAIGHT ON.

70.20km - TURN RIGHT on the D227. Then, arriving in Roussillon, BEAR LEFT and then STRAIGHT ON at the roundabout for your final climb into the town centre.

73.20km - At the entrance to the Sentiers des Ocres, you have reached the end of today's route. Enjoy the views!

Arrival by train, car, foot or bike


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Difficulty
difficult
Distance
73.2 km
Duration
5:21 h
Ascent
1008 m
Descent
1000 m
Multi-stage tour Scenic With refreshment stops

Statistics

: h
 km
 m
 m
Highest point
 m
Lowest point
 m
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