France

Cent Cols Challenge Eastern Pyrenees

26th août - 7th septembre 2017

  • Start Location GIRONA
  • End Location GIRONA
  • Av. Daily Distance 200 KM
  • Av. Daily Elevation 4,500 M
  • Days 13
  • Difficulty
100 cols, 10 days – a unique journey that tests and builds the body and spirit in equal measure.

Roll out from Girona onto the mountains of Spain, Andorra, and some undiscovered French cols. The first of the Grand Finale tough triple.

Single occupancy — 4 100 € per person
Double occupancy — 3 400 € per person

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Who is it for?

The Cent Cols Challenge is the brainchild of endurance rider Phil Deeker: his determination, commitment to riding and will to explore has created one of the ultimate tests of what is possible on a road bike. Cent Cols Challenges take place across Europe, criss-crossing entire mountain ranges to combine the classic routes and climbs from the Grand Tours with lesser-known backcountry gems.

All trips include

  • Expert planning and guide support from guides and vehicles
  • Pre-trip discounts on Rapha apparel
  • Unique routes
  • Top-level mechanics

Flights, bike hire and travel insurance are not included.

How Hard is it?

Because of the distances, and the huge physical and psychological challenge, the Cent Cols are for the strongest and most experienced riders. On most days riders should expect at least 8-10 hours in the saddle, and to be self-sufficient for long periods of time. The remoteness of the terrain also means that accommodation and food are less luxurious than on Rapha’s other trips. However, Phil Deeker and the Rapha team of guides, mechanics and soigneurs take care of all logistics and everything riders need, letting you focus your mind and legs on the cols. It is usual that some riders don’t complete the parcours. But, thanks to the stunning settings and the camaraderie, and possibly to reserves they didn’t know they had, riders often find they rise to the demands of the trip and take their riding to a new level.

All Cent Cols Challenges include

  • All meals
  • On-road food

Double occupancy as standard

Day Distance Climbing
Arrival day Meet us at the first night accommodation
Day 1 Girona Loop 205 KM 2,800 M
Day 2 Girona - La Molina (Spain) 196 KM 4,600 M
Day 3 Molina - Andorra 204 KM 4,500 M
Day 4 Andorra - Sort (Spain) 200 KM 5,400 M
Day 5 Sort - Bagneres de Luchon 177 KM 5,400 M
Rest Day
Day 6 Luchon Loop 199 KM 5,200 M
Day 7 Luchon - Oust 209 KM 5,500 M
Day 8 Oust - Ax-les-Thermes 202 KM 4,700 M
Day 9 Ax - Ceret 201 KM 4,860 M
Day 10 Ceret - Girona 209 KM 3,000 M
Departure day Transfer day

See full itinerary

Arrival day

Meet us at the first night accommodation

Day 1

Girona Loop

The Girona loop is a perfect, relatively gentle introduction to the hilly roads that make this area one of the most favoured of all by the pro’s with a typical mix of 'known' roads and some narrow, lesser-ridden ones. The stage ends with a little loop up to the the famous old part of Girona.

Distance

205 KM

Climbing

2,800 M

Major Climbs

Rajols, Gomara, Condreu

Day 2

Girona - La Molina (Spain)

After climbing the infamous Roccacorba we head north west, via 13 cols, towards the heart of the Pyrenees, finishing at the La Molina ski station, near the French border.

Distance

196 KM

Climbing

4,600 M

Major Climbs

Rocacorba, Crueta, Vidra, Merolla

Day 3

Molina - Andorra

Starting on the impressive Cerdagne plateau we then explore the dramatic, barren gorges and remote climbs of this little-known area of southern Arriege before we tackle the long climb to the highest road pass in the Pyrenees (Port d’Envalira) and arrive in Andorra.

Distance

204 KM

Climbing

4,500 M

Major Climbs

Llose, Creu, Puymorens, Port d'Envalira, Ordino

Day 4

Andorra - Sort (Spain)

A truly epic stage that includes the best ‘jewels’ in the crown of Andorra climbs: perhaps the Queen stage of the event, this will be an unforgettable day!

Distance

200 KM

Climbing

5,400 M

Major Climbs

Alto Cortals, Engolasters, Gallina, Baixalis, Port del Canto

Day 5

Sort - Bagneres de Luchon

A long but spectacular climb brings us back into France for the first part of the ‘Luchon Feast’: Portillon, Hospice de France, and Superbagneres make it immediately clear why Bagneres de Luchon is so worth spending three nights of our trip at!

Distance

177 KM

Climbing

5,400 M

Major Climbs

Port de Bonaigua, Portillon, Superbagneres, Hospice de France

Rest Day

Day 6

Luchon Loop

The Luchon loop is another feast of classic Tour climbs, interrupted by a mid-stage section of ‘CCC roads’ that will bite the legs just as hard as the ‘Giants’.

Distance

199 KM

Climbing

5,200 M

Major Climbs

Peyresourde, Azet Louron, Hourquette d'Ancizan, Poer de Bales

Day 7

Luchon - Oust

Once back over the (harder) French side of the Portillon, we climb one of the most remote roads of the Pyrenees to arrive at the Col de Menté. Familiar Tour climbs appear mid-stage but we are soon back on the ‘rare pearls’ on our way to Oust, the tiny village in the heart of one of the most picturesque areas of the High Pyrenees. 15 cols make this an especially tough stage.

Distance

209 KM

Climbing

5,500 M

Major Climbs

Artigascou, Menté, Core, Saraille

Day 8

Oust - Ax-les-Thermes

The majestic Agnes/Port de Lers climbs open the stage, with views hard to beat. Yet the winding route to the Col de Marmare, via the Route des Cretes, to the Col de Pradel is hardly less impressive. The stage ends with another tough Tour favourite at Ax-les-Thermes, where thermal baths in the town centre can comfort tired legs!

Distance

202 KM

Climbing

4,700 M

Major Climbs

Peguerre, Jouels, Agnes, Port de Lers, Marmare, Pradel

Day 9

Ax - Ceret

Starting like a predictable ‘classic’ route, via the Port de Pailheres, and the Col de Jau, the stage then takes on true 'CCC style' as we climb through long, remote gorges to the Col de Palomeres and onto the dramatic Col de Brousse. A tough five km ramp up to our remote hillside hotel, completes the back-road feast of these little-known climbs through dense Mediteranean oak forest.

Distance

201 KM

Climbing

4,860 M

Major Climbs

Pailheres, Jau, Palmer's, Brousse

Day 10

Ceret - Girona

Glorious stretches of rolling coastal road, with occasional single-track balcony-road sections through the impressive Banyuls wine hills, make the perfect way to celebrate this CCC journey. After an unusually flat part across the plain back towards Girona, we hit the infamous ‘Montanya dels Angels’ for an unforgettable final climb of the event.

Distance

209 KM

Climbing

3,000 M

Major Climbs

Panassars, Gascons, del Bombo, Els Angels (Portells)

Departure day

Transfer day

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Customer Testimonials

My 6th CCC and the best. Outstanding route, comfortable hotels, great food and superb support staff.

— CCC Cantabrico 2015

Ride routes and on-bike food/food stops were outstanding!

— CCC Pyrenees 2015

FAQ

Am I strong enough for the trip?

All our trips are physically demanding, but some are harder than others. Cent Cols Challenges are the toughest challenge. Our guides will support every rider to go beyond their usual level of riding, but you should be able to spend up to 10 hours in the saddle for multiple days.

How does payment work?

We ask all customers to pay a deposit (usually £500/$800/€650) when they book, which confirms their reservation. The balance is due 60 days before departure – we’ll get in touch to remind you when it’s time. If you book less than 60 days before departure, we’ll usually ask you to pay the full trip price upfront.

See all FAQ

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Contact Us

Europe

Email: travel@rapha.cc

Telephone: +44 (0) 207 482 9175

Hours: 9.30am-6.00pm (BST)

USA

Email: travel@rapha.cc

Telephone: 877.907.2742

Hours: 8.30am-5.30pm (PDT)

Asia Pacific

Email: travel@rapha.cc

Telephone: +44 (0) 207 482 9175

Hours: 9.30am-6.00pm (BST)