Ride the Alps
There are so many options for lovers of Cross Country in the valleys that surround Sauze d’Oulx. Most of the routes are old military roads that offer double track rough roads that seem to go on forever.
There are rough forest roads that wind their way through the spectacular Larch forests that surround Sauze d’Oulx. Occasionally these open up into wide alpine meadows offering jaw dropping views of the surrounding mountains. Rides can be as short as 1hr or as long as the whole day so there really is something for everybody.
A selection of rides
Go out all day for epic adventures or choose to stay closer to Sauze and opt for an easier ride, there are enough options to keep you busy all summer. I have selected a few of my favourite rides below.
Strada dell Assietta
This is an absolute gem in the world of cross country mountain biking. Originally built by the military in the late 19th century, it’s 34km of dirt track traverses the high peaks of the Val Chisone and Susa Valley. Along its route you pass many of the old military forts before descending to the Colle della Finestre, a true cycling mecca.
This route takes you over the top of the Susa valley into the neighbouring ski resort of Sestriere. The highest point of the ride is Mt Fraiteve at 2700mts which is the cross roads of the Via Lattea ski area and offers fantastic 360° views of the surrounding valleys.
This route takes you up to Italy’s highest fort at just over 2800mts. It’s second to the neighbouring Chaberton fort (France) as the highest in the Alps. The track up is the old military road. The relentless climb up is often a double digit gradient on lose uneven track that tests both stamina and bike handling in equal measure.
This route to the Colle takes you through Monfol and into the Gran Bosco National Park. As you’d expect it’s all uphill from Sauze at average gradient of 7%. At the colle you join the infamous Strada dell’Assietta. Time to take in the fantastic views before enjoying the ride back down!
Testa dell Assietta
This ride takes up to the point of the famous battle of the same name. It's 40km in length and has over 1300mts of ascent. It initially follows the same route as Colle della Finestre ride until reaching the refugio Casa Assietta which will be open for refreshments during the summer. The return is via the Strada dei Cannoni which is a glorious 11km descent back to Sauze d'Oulx.
A great way of experiencing the mountains is on an e-bike. Faure Sport in the centre of Sauze d’Oulx offer guided e bike tours. There are tours for beginners, intermediates and advanced cyclists. These last between 3 & 3.5hrs. The cost is €55 which includes the e-bike and helmet. To have a completely different experience there is also night time e-bike tours. The cost for this tour is €65 which includes bike, helmet, lights and food. The tour starts at 19:30 and last 3.5hrs.
If you would like to take the worry out of planning your ride and reading maps then why not hire a guide for the day. We can recommend a fully qualified, bi-lingual guide/instructor who is available either per hour of for the full day. Prices start at €20 per hour for instruction and €60 for a full day guiding.