Tour 2021,  19 - 21 August

stagedistance (km)climbing (m)
Huttwil - Ryffersegg - Schwanden - Thun982250
Thun - Gestelen - Pillon - La Forclaz - Les Diablerets1032810
Les Diablerets - Croix - Forclaz - Gueulaz - Martigny1102850

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Stage 1 (19 August 2021): Huttwil - Ryffersegg - Schwanden - Thun


The summer of 2021 did not bring much good weather and it was only in the second half of August that i set off on my tour. I first went by train to Huttwil. Not far from there, there was a small pass that i had not yet done, Kaltenegg. As i didn't want to make too many detours, i took an unpaved road through farms and forests. I even had to push the bike on short stretches. My general direction was south, and it had to stay that way, so i had to ride over many hills. I was heading towards the Emmental and i can testify that the Emmental has many... bumps. The next pass was Hinterschwarzenegg. No problem to get there. But then, in order not to go back, i had to continue to climb and ride over a ridge, partly on gravel roads. Fortunately, everything was cycleable. After a good descent, i arrived in the Emme valley proper, which meant a few kilometres with lots of traffic. After Signau, i climbed in the direction of Ryffersegg, which then led me naturally to Müliseile and Eggstalden. From there it was a quick descent to Jassbach. Still heading south, i climbed towards Heimenschwand. It wasn't far, then it went downhill again. I arrived in the Zulg valley by the slight Fuchsegg pass. Before really descending into the valley, i made a small but steep detour over the Rinderstieg pass. And shortly before arriving in Steffisburg, i went all downhill over the Weierhöchi pass.
But after all that descent, i had to climb again. This was on a nice little road marked as a cycle route, but quite steep in places. Especially on the last climb to Eggli. I took a short break there. It was the beginning of the afternoon and the weather was still overcast, as it had been since the start. Still by a pleasant small road, i arrived in the area of Sigriswil and of the lake of Thoune by the small pass of Wolfgruebe. But i didn't ride directly down to the lake, i made another detour via the Chrinde and Multenegg passes, without forgetting by the way two very small passes above Goldiwil, Ahornegg and Auf der Egg. From there, i just had to ride down to Thun and look for a place to spend the night.

 distance (km)altitude (m)climbing (m)
Hulligen (Dürrenroth)5660 
Pt. 78211780 
Gridenbühl (Jassbach)50900 
Dürrenast (Thun)98560 
total98 2250

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Stage 2 (20 August 2021): Thun - Gestelen - Pillon - La Forclaz - Les Diablerets


As i was able to have an early breakfast, i left Thun before 8 am. The weather was still overcast but dry. A small pass was already waiting for me after a few kilometres, Gwattegg. The climb was short but steep and the descent was partly on gravel. I then headed towards the Simmental. Once in this valley, i followed the marked bicycle route and avoided the traffic on the main road. In Oey, i turned left towards the Diemtigtal. The sky was beginning to clear and the climb was very pleasant. It was still a signposted route, but in principle for mountain bikes. In fact, it was also suitable for a road bike, provided it has small enough gear ratios. From Meniggrund onwards, traffic was forbidden to motor vehicles, except that according to the traffic seen there, permits must be very easy to obtain. At the top of the valley, i made a small detour to the right to the Luegle-Lücke. For part of the climb, i had to push the bike, but the scenery was worth it. After the descent from this pass, i only had a few hectometers left on a good gravel road to reach the Gestelen pass. From there i could already see Zweisimmen, but in fact the descent was still long. And too steep to just let off the brakes. There was also a gravel section, but fortunately it was short. It was midday when i passed Zweisimmen. I took the cycle route to Saanenmöser. This was a bad idea. The climbs were extreme and interspersed with descents. Next time i'll prefer the steady climb of the main road, despite the noise and exhaust fumes.
The descent to Gstaad, on the other hand, was pleasant. It was just necessary to watch out for oncoming traffic as the road was narrow. Further, up to Gsteig, the climb was gentle. Then it was the road to the Pillon pass, with a rather irregular but never excessive slope. In the meantime it was quite hot, but there had been enough fountains along my route, so i didn't have to suffer, also thanks to the elevation. The descent was easy and allowed me to reach Les Diablerets already in the early afternoon. I already looked for a hotel because i was planning to come back there after a further lap. This extra lap led me first (downhill and then uphill) to the village of La Forclaz. From there, i made a loop through La Golette before returning to Les Diablerets.

 distance (km)altitude (m)climbing (m)
Dürrenast (Thun)0560 
Alti Schlyffi4600 
Fure (Mannried)46920 
Col du Pillon801550370
Les Diablerets841160 
Les Aviolats881080 
Servaison (La Forclaz)911280200
La Forclaz921260 
Col de la Golette941410150
La Forclaz961260 
Servaison (La Forclaz)97128020
Les Aviolats991080 
Les Diablerets103116080
total103 2810

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Stage 3 (21 August 2021): Les Diablerets - Croix - Forclaz - Gueulaz - Martigny


I left later for this third stage, due to the hotel schedule. I first climbed the Col de la Croix, which was a good warm-up. Immediately after this pass, i made a small detour to the Col Inférieur de la Croix, the eastern side of which would be a path. The descent to Villars was beautiful, but from there to Gryon via the Col de la Barboleuse, the road was shared with the Bex-Villars-Bretaye railway. It was therefore necessary to pay attention to the little train and especially to its rails. After the long descent to Bex, i turned left towards Châtel to ride over the pass of Les Caux before descending to St-Maurice and crossing the Rhône. This was the most flat part of the whole tour as i followed the Rhône to Martigny. To go up to the Col de la Forclaz, i first took the road of Les Combes, perhaps steeper but still more interesting and with less traffic than the main road. The climb was quite long, but without any problems. A short break at the pass allowed me to regain my strength. This was necessary, because after a quick descent to near Le Châtelard, a second important climb began: i headed towards Finhaut and then towards the Emosson dam. As up the Forclaz road, the slope was a little less than 10%, except at the very end where it was a little steeper. By the time i could finally see the lake, i was at the Gueulaz pass. I then went down to the dam. The road was blocked, but it was easy to get through anyway with the bike. At the other end of the dam, i went to the Col du Passet, a pass that you can only really understand if you imagine that it was a passage before the dam was built.
I then turned back and went down to Finhaut. But there i took another way, which avoided going back up to La Forclaz. Yes, but it was a gravel road. At the beginning, it was very pretty. Then came a first series of quite steep bends. And a second, much steeper one. This would be easy to do on a mountain bike, but with my rim-braked touring bike, it was a bit on the edge. Still, there were other cyclists with similar equipment passing by. From the hamlet of Le Trétien onwards i was back on a tarmac road and the rest of the descent to Martigny was therefore trouble-free. But there was still a tunnel for which i mounted my rear light. It was just after 5 pm when i arrived at the station in Martigny.

 distance (km)altitude (m)climbing (m)
Les Diablerets01160 
Col de la Croix91780620
Col Inférieur de la Croix101730 
Col de la Barboleuse211210 
Pont-Neuf (Bex)32430 
Les Caux34560130
La Preyse4147060
Col de la Forclaz6715301060
Le Châtelard741100 
Col de la Gueulaz851970670
Col du Passet861930 
Col de la Gueulaz88197040
Le Trétien981020 
La Médettaz99106040
La Bâtiaz108460 
total110 2850

PS / 28.8.2021