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Level: Intermediate
Length: 10 mi (16.1 km)
Surface: Singletrack
Configuration: Out & Back
Elevation: +150/ -1,855 ft
Total: 9 riders

Mountain Biking Col de Balme

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#8 of 57 mountain bike trails in France
#5,047 in the world

The Col de Balme is the pass between France and Switzerland at the head of the Chamonix valley. It will wow you with one of the finest alpine vistas on the planet. You'll be able to feast your eyes on Mont Blanc and much more before ordering your coffee and gateau at the alpine cafe-restaurant that perches on the pass.
To get there from the top of the Charamillon ski lift you follow the signs to the Col des Posettes (1997m). At that col turn right on the 4x4 track that heads up to the Col de Balme.

From the col (pass) you can ride down into Switzerland (following the Tour du Mont Blanc trail) or take the singletrack that runs under the ski lift back down to the village of Le Tour.

First added by Desperado on Oct 9, 2016. Last updated May 11, 2020. → add an update
Before you go
  • Drinking water: yes
  • Lift service: yes
  • Night riding: unknown
  • Pump track: unknown
  • Restrooms: yes
  • Fat bike grooming: unknown
  • E-bikes allowed: unknown
  • Fee required: unknown
This trail information is user-generated. Help improve this information by suggesting a correction.
Getting there
From Chamonix head up the valley to the village of Le Tour where you (and your bike) should take the Charamillon telecabine (ski lift)...
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Col de Balme Trail map

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Local Info

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Trail checkins

gasherbrum4 (on Sep 21, 2019)
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Trail conditions

Good (on Sep 4, 2018)
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Rider questions

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  • gasherbrum4

    Col de Balme isn't really a destination per se. It is the start of some of the best riding in the Chamonix valley (Col des Posettes, Catogne, Les Herbagères) or to Trient in Swizerland. The singletrack to Trient via Croix de Fer and Catogne is one of the best in the alps.

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  • Jim Cummings

    This is just one of a whole raft of mountain biking options from Chamonix which is France's top alpine destination. There is a good introduction here: http://www.chamonix.net/english/summer-activities/mountain-biking
    The Col de Balme is heaven on a fine day and the ride up from the top of the Charamillon ski lift is about an hour's easyish ride. The way back down on the singletrack under the lift needs advanced skills. There are easy four wheel drive track alternatives.

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