Bourg-d'Oisans

30 timed courses for amateur cyclists

L'Alpe dHuez climb, the course of La Marmotte Gran Fondo, all the Oisans mountain passes and climbs to the ski resorts are now equipped so that amateur riders can time their performances. The system allows cyclists to time themselves alone, by two or in groups on more than 30 itineraries and to be ranked in a general classification. Each course is equipped with a checkpoint activated by a chip identifying each rider. The chips, to be fixed on the bike or rider, can be hired in local tourist offices and are activated when the cyclist rides past start and finish flags.

Chips can also be purchased for 26.50 euros annually and operate on all Timtoo Timing course in France, Italy and Switzerland.

In the 30 courses in Oisans feature the climbs of L'Alpe d'Huez, Croix-de-Fer, Glandon, Lautaret, Galibier, Deux-Alpes or Col de Sarenne, that the Tour will ride for the first time in this edition.

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Le col du Lautaret vu de la route du col du Galibier  ©MOSSOTPanorama des 21 lacets légendaires ©VerTdeTerre
20 previous stages
Population: 3,500
Chef-lieu de canton de l'Isère (38)
Specialities: gratin dauphinois, crozets (pasta), farcis, ganèfles, Villard Reculas goat cheese, myrtle pie, genepi (spirit).
Economy: tourism
Sport: skiing, cycling, frisbee
Celebrities: Fabienne Serrat, Gauthier de Teissieres, Sandrine Aubert (skiers), Isabelle Blanc (snowboard)
Festivals: Chainsaw sculpting French championship (May), Mountain Images Meeting (June), Vertigo Week (July), Magic'Altitude (August), Bourg d'Oisans Fair (September)
Labels: Green resort, ville fleurie (2)

Timeline

  • Iron age

    The region is peopled by the Ucennis tribe, from whom is derived the name Oisans.
  • 1036

    Humbert, bishop of Grenoble, founds a priory in Saint-Laurent-près-du lac, a locality by a lake formed by river Romanche.
  • 1191

    A landslide forms a huge 18-klilometres long lake and drowns St Laurent . Le Bourg d'Oisans, set on the banks of the new lake, is the new centre of population.
  • 1219

    On September 14, the natural dam that formed the lake broke, flooding the valley down to Grenoble. It is a major disaster which clamed 5,000 lives and is known as the "Grenoble deluge".
  • 1339

    Saint-Laurent is rebuilt and a castle is mentioned.15th century – The road of Oisans, leading to Lautaret and Italy, is used by Lyon merchants going to Briancon.
  • 1540

    The lake disappears completely.
  • 18th century

    River Romanche is dyked and the plain is drained. Agriculture develops.
  • 1804

    Reconstruction of the Lautaret road boosting the Oisans valley.
  • 19th century

    Creation of cotton and silk mills.
  • 1895

    Creation of a rail line operating until 1964.
  • 20th century

    Development of hydroelectricity.
  • 1952

    First stage of the Tour de France in L'Alpe d'Huez.
Carte postale ancienne éditée par la Papèterie des Alpes à Grenoble : Installations ferroviaires terminales des Voies ferrées du Dauphiné, 1909  ©E. Guichard
20 previous stages
Population: 3,500
Chef-lieu de canton de l'Isère (38)
Specialities: gratin dauphinois, crozets (pasta), farcis, ganèfles, Villard Reculas goat cheese, myrtle pie, genepi (spirit).
Economy: tourism
Sport: skiing, cycling, frisbee
Celebrities: Fabienne Serrat, Gauthier de Teissieres, Sandrine Aubert (skiers), Isabelle Blanc (snowboard)
Festivals: Chainsaw sculpting French championship (May), Mountain Images Meeting (June), Vertigo Week (July), Magic'Altitude (August), Bourg d'Oisans Fair (September)
Labels: Green resort, ville fleurie (2)

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Bourg-d'Oisans and cycling

For all the cyclists in the world, whatever their level, Bourg d'Oisans means the start of the climb up L'Alpe d'Huez. But Bourg d'Oisans was also often the start of stages validations or correcting the results at L'Alpe d'Huez.

In 1952, for instance, Fausto Coppi took his overall lead at l'Alpe from five seconds to 20 minutes in a stage between Bourg d'Oisans and Sestriere. Irked by constant attacks, the "campionissimo" went solo on the Galibier never to be seen again. The Tour de France was over and organisers were even forced to double the bonus for the runner-up to maintain an interest until Paris.

TOUR DE FRANCE 1952: Fausto Coppi sur l’étape BOURG D'OISANS / SESTRIERES  ©Presse Sports
20 previous stages
Population: 3,500
Chef-lieu de canton de l'Isère (38)
Specialities: gratin dauphinois, crozets (pasta), farcis, ganèfles, Villard Reculas goat cheese, myrtle pie, genepi (spirit).
Economy: tourism
Sport: skiing, cycling, frisbee
Celebrities: Fabienne Serrat, Gauthier de Teissieres, Sandrine Aubert (skiers), Isabelle Blanc (snowboard)
Festivals: Chainsaw sculpting French championship (May), Mountain Images Meeting (June), Vertigo Week (July), Magic'Altitude (August), Bourg d'Oisans Fair (September)
Labels: Green resort, ville fleurie (2)

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Places to see

Museum of minerals and wildlife

Set in the St Laurent church, the museum is a formidable place to discover the natural and cultural heritage of the Oisans Valley.

Parc National des Ecrins ©MartinDParc National des Ecrins, vue sur le Lac du Lauvitel ©Thierry Le Ridant
20 previous stages
Population: 3,500
Chef-lieu de canton de l'Isère (38)
Specialities: gratin dauphinois, crozets (pasta), farcis, ganèfles, Villard Reculas goat cheese, myrtle pie, genepi (spirit).
Economy: tourism
Sport: skiing, cycling, frisbee
Celebrities: Fabienne Serrat, Gauthier de Teissieres, Sandrine Aubert (skiers), Isabelle Blanc (snowboard)
Festivals: Chainsaw sculpting French championship (May), Mountain Images Meeting (June), Vertigo Week (July), Magic'Altitude (August), Bourg d'Oisans Fair (September)
Labels: Green resort, ville fleurie (2)

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The bulb salesmen

In the late 19th century and the early 20th, a new trade emerged in the Oisans valley, always renowned for its travelling salesmen. One of them, named Pierre Vanel, had the brilliant idea of selling mountain flowers like gentian or edelweiss and his initiative was so successful that many of his colleagues chose to emulate him. From then on, every village had its own travelling florist, who later inspired mail-order companies like Interflora or Vilmorin for whom they ended up working.

Most of them already worked with catalogues with reproductions, often embellished, of their best samples. The flower trade in Oisans became international, some of the valley's florists making a fortune in Brazil or Spain. But Russia, with its long winters and late blooms, was also fond of flowers from the Alps. One florist from Venosc named Remy Veyrat was known to trade with Russia and the legend even has it that he was "the Tsar's florist".

Another tale alleges that another salesman from Venosc attempted to sell Tsar Nicholas II a blue rose, a species that does not exist. Some old people in the valley heard from their grandparents that the man, whose name is forgotten, was arrested by the gendarmes.

L’Edelweiss ©Tobias GasserLa Gentiane des Alpes  ©Franck Le Driant
20 previous stages
Population: 3,500
Chef-lieu de canton de l'Isère (38)
Specialities: gratin dauphinois, crozets (pasta), farcis, ganèfles, Villard Reculas goat cheese, myrtle pie, genepi (spirit).
Economy: tourism
Sport: skiing, cycling, frisbee
Celebrities: Fabienne Serrat, Gauthier de Teissieres, Sandrine Aubert (skiers), Isabelle Blanc (snowboard)
Festivals: Chainsaw sculpting French championship (May), Mountain Images Meeting (June), Vertigo Week (July), Magic'Altitude (August), Bourg d'Oisans Fair (September)
Labels: Green resort, ville fleurie (2)

Internet-Webseiten

Trikotträger Am Ende der Etappe 14

Klassements Am Ende der Etappe 14

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