SkiBike Tour 2014-15 - Monts Jura

Posted: Friday, 20 February 2015 by Mark Kinnon in Labels: , , ,

I was aiming for a nice gentle warm up day to shake down both myself and my skibikes, before the prospect of social riding becomes a reality. The easy slopes at nearby La Faucille in the Jura mountains always provide the ideal spot for such a day. But I wasn't expecting a text from Thierry at 07:00 to say that he would be joining me at 09:00.
It was pretty nippy as we assembled our skibike kit in the car park at, Thierry deserves a medal for his patience, as there was some unexpected last minute fettling necessary.

Finally everything was ready and we could get out and ride. The snow was pretty hard and getting thin in places, but the ability to ride all conditions is the mark of the accomplished skibiker There were a few unscheduled dismounts, but luckily there weren't too many buttock clenching moments.
La Faucille is quite a small ski station, in a couple of hours we had covered most of it, including the run down to Mijoux in the Valserine valley.
After a quick lunchtime snack we decided to head a few clicks West to the neighbouring ski station of Le Crozet - Lelex. It is somewhere I have been to in the past, but this was my first time using Lelex as the starting point.

Thierry at Le Crozet - a 2 hour journey each way

We spent a very pleasant few hours going over the various sections in the pleasant late afternoon sun. Some of the red grade runs were quite challenging in the current conditions and seemed to go on for much longer than the relatively modest vertical drop would suggest. I was recommended to try the border cross course by the local SnowScoot riders, I don't remember this from previous visits, when you have no idea what is coming next it is pretty terrifying. I had been riding almost exclusively "freestyle" or "pegger" as they stay in the US and found myself quite fatigued by close of play. The few occasions I had a good sit down, I found myself being covertly filmed by Thierry, which he will be able to use for instructing novice "Arravis Skibikers" as how not to do things.

My heartfelt thanks go to Thierry for making a 2 hour journey each way to come and ride a ski station somewhat smaller than the ones just 5 minutes from his home. As ever in the Monts Jura ski stations, the lift operators were friendly and helpful, in spite of the half-term holiday crowds and have also now adapted their smaller telecabins to hang SnowScoots and skibikes outside.

The weather forecast looks to be a bit daunting for the next few days, but at least it brings with it the prospect of some fresh snow to liven up the slopes.