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The Vercors is the vastest mountain chain of the Northern Pre-Alps: its majestic cirques, deep gorges and countless caves paradoxically conceal a green mountain range with ordered and calming landscapes that are easily accessible on E-bike. A ring of cliffs delimits this plateau with its rugged borders, sometimes giving us a feeling of the end of the world that could be perfectly summed up in the song: "J'irai rouler sur le rebord du monde, voir ce que les hommes en ont fait" (I will ride on the edge of the world and see what men have made of it)...
Itinerary start: On day 1, we will meet you mid-afternoon at the hotel in Villard de Lans.
We leave Villard de Lans through the small shopping streets to head north towards Lans en Vercors. We quickly gain height to join a forest track on the ridge line where we ride through clearings and small woods typical of the Vercors to Lans, protected between mountains and plateaus, cliffs, mountain pastures and forests. The scenery is already well set for this first day of cycling in the Vercors natural park, the electric assistance helps us to move with ease in the continuation of the sinuous and hilly route to the resort of Autrans where we spend the night.
The first part of our route takes us through the gorges of the Bourne, an impressive corbelled road, with a succession of wild and vertiginous landscapes. We bypass Saint Martin en Vercors by steep roads between pastures and forests before plunging towards Les Baraques en Vercors and the entrance to the Grands Goulets road. We arrive at La Chapelle en Vercors, a small village typical of the plateau where we can taste some of the local specialities, the Vercors Sassenage blue cheese, or the famous ravioles of the Grands Goulets still made by hand.
Today, we cross the Croix de Châtelard and Carri passes to enter the wild forest of Lente, inhabited during the bellowing season by deer. We return to civilisation at the Chaud Clapier Nordic ski resort, before following a tortuous track between grasslands and clearings characteristic of the Vercors plateau. We descend to Vassieux en Vercors via the Col de la Chau, passing in front of the Resistance Memorial, before entering the heart of this village famous for its museum of the Second World War resistance.
This morning, we descend to the south of the Vercors plateau, with the Diois as a backdrop, which we overlook from the edge of the Col de Rousset. The next part of our route takes us zigzagging up through the undergrowth of the Vercors integral reserve, to Roybon, where we set up camp in a hostel in the middle of nowhere, a stone's throw from the Herbouilly plain.
Our last stage, shorter, brings us progressively back to Villard de Lans, crossing the full Herbouilly and Bois Barbu, offering us magnificent views along the way, sometimes on landscapes of clearings and cliffs, sometimes towards horizons of a valley at the end of the world... We reach Corrençon en Vercors, the first stage of our return to civilisation, before winding our way along the winding road of the Côte 2000 to conclude our journey in Villard de Lans. How beautiful the mountain is!
Distance covered: approx. 35 km / altitude gain: approx. 600 m.
Distance and altitude difference are given for information only.
Itinerary end: Around 5pm on day 6 in Villard de Lans.
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