So the TFITers are down from the final run, ending very appropriately at the bottom of Woodstock, possibly our favourite run of the trip. Yes, the Foam Tour 2017 has drawn to a close.
I’m glad to report everyone is in one piece – our bikes somewhat less so, but that’s to be expected after a weekend of big mountains and equally big descents.
I’m still trying to process the weekend (and the reality of another epic delay getting back from Geneva airport), however, I guess the big question is, “is MTB in Les Arcs worth it?”
Well, to put it simply, I can confirm that is an emphatic, unequivocal, massive YES.
Les Arcs is awesome. Different to Morzine / Les Gets in many ways and better in others. Personally I think the trails lean towards a bit more ‘real world’. They are rougher than we are used to (Marbles… they are everywhere) but I think all the better for it.
We’ve rode a checklist of the trails, Woodstock, Marsupalami, Le Tranks, Yellow Stone and of course the simply-epic-best-big-day-out-I’ve-ever-had on the Mont Jovet descent with Emily and Evan from The Inside Line MTB (more on that to come at a later date) and have all left with some stupidly wide grins.
The trails did not disappoint. They were technical in places and challenging in others but also felt very “familiar” to a UK trail rider. The major benefit to my mind though was there were no MTB super highways (like Morzine!) and 90% less braking bumps (yayyyy).
The most surprising thing of all though was just how quiet it was. Les Arcs is definitely not as popular a resort to head to and is all the better for it. Even on the Saturday (official opening day) we were blessed with VERY empty trails and VERY quiet lifts. Which was simply fantastic!
I’d recommend you get up to the higher trails if you can and weather permitting. The trails are very worth it and the views are simply stunning.
We stayed at an awesome chalet in Peisey (note: a great place to use as a base) and our a brilliant host (John – who has some new chalets through Icebreaker Chalets for riding and skiing as of next year) who fed us to within an inch of our lives.
Are there any downsides of MTB in Les Arcs? Not many, but I would recommend anyone heading out to take plenty of spares for your traditional MTB consumables (brake pads, mech hangers, spokes, bleed kits) as bike shops offering repairs were surprisingly a bit thin on the ground. I’d also very much recommend that you have some form of transport there as well – it does come in handy. If you’ve broken something I advise you head to Bourg St Maurice or to Moutiers.
Now that we’re back the TFITers are collectively and feverishly editing some footage together and I hope to get some videos up here soon so we can do some “show and tell”.
I think on balance Les Arcs has not fully woken up to the potential of MTB in the summer and unlike Morzine / Les Gets is high enough to still routinely get awesome winters so it’s not as important.
However, don’t let that put you off, it is 100% worth a visit and we WILL be heading back!