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3 steps to Heaven; Step 2
Sunday July 28, 2013 - Email this article to a friend

James Cove and his 14-year old son, Max, are in the Lake Annecy Ski Resorts. Or should that read Summer Resorts? Here is their second blog on the attractions of a family summer holiday in the mountains.

In the first blog our content editor and his son did a spot of climbing in the village of Grand Bornand.

Zip wires, trapezes and climbing wall were laid on - see here for the experience.

Now it is about to get a bit more physical.

They are off cross-country mountain biking.

Father and son bondingFather and son

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Day Two

The area around La Clusaz is ideal for mountain biking with dozens of prepared trails. 

Many are green and blues ones aimed at novices and families.

It was a long way from the steep trails I had been doing in Les 2 Alpes the previous week and the event I had watched, the Mountain of Hell.

But there was an immediate connection.

Our guide for the day was Antonin Lietaghi and had taken part in the Mountain of Hell and the one in Alpe d'Huez, the mega Avalanche.

He got a top 50 placing - quite an achievement.

HomeAntonin

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mountain biking is big business and it is set to expand - currently the bikers make up 5% of summer visitor and they want to double that.

We began our day looking at a long-term plan for business growth.

Or at least that is how I saw it - Max just saw it as somewhere to have fun.

In the centre of La Clusaz was a course built by Antonin and his colleagues with free entry and free use of the bikes.

Growing popularityGrowing popularity

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Practice session

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After a few turns of the circuit Max and I headed up to the slopes for the real deal. 

The scenery was some of the most stunning I have ridden through and ideal for all ages and abilities.

Alpine pleasuresAlpine pleasures

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cross country at its bestCross country at its best

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

La ClussazLa Clusaz

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As a testament to the area's commitment to mountain biking it has been holding Roc des Alps - a three day festival of mountain biking that attracted 5,000 riders.

There were 10 races with the grand finale being a 55km cross-country race.

Max and I managed slightly less, about 15 kms, and we rounded off our afternoon activities with a toboggan ride with a difference.

Rounding off the dayRounding off the day

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In the evening we continued the biking theme as a demonstration was given in La Clusaz by some stunt riders.

Once again it was free and once again, as a parent, it was good not to have money flowing out of my pocket.

Evening entertainmentEvening entertainment

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tomorrow we are stepping up another gear and going on the hire wires of an adventure park in the woods.

One of the crossings involved riding a bike along a thin wire.

Max obviously managed it - but did I?

Back in the saddleBack in the saddle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For a video of what is on offer at the family festival then see below.

For more information about the resorts featured in the trip follow the links below:

Grand Bornand

La Clusaz

Manigod

St Jean de Sixt

For the spirit of the mountains

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