Published by Lyn on 17 June 2016
Andy Hodges checked out the specialist cycling and triathlon chalet, Brown Bear Lodge, on a cycling holiday in Morzine. Here's his review.
Joe and Amelia offer a top-notch cycling accommodation and triathlon training 'camps' here, although camping is not what’s on offer; instead, you’ll find their fabulous Alpine-style lodge is a perfect home from home.
Situated a short distance from the village square and offering everything a cyclist could wish for, Brown Bear Lodge is a cycle training immersion experience. The cycling in the area is varied, from short rides to nearby villages to Tour de France cols or even an international lap of Lac Leman (180km and about 1000m ascent, Amelia tells us); the team know the area intimately and can offer guided, supported rides or advice for self-guided trips in the beautiful surroundings.
5 things we liked
1. Fabulous bike facilities.
Bike wash, hanging rails and a range of likely-to-be-needed spares in the bike-specific basement mean that even your bike will feel that it’s enjoying a spa break whilst you soak away the aches of the day in the jacuzzi. You can also rent high quality road bikes for the day, weekend or week from the stable of Giant performance cycles on offer.
2. Training camp options.
For the more competitive or performance orientated riders the training camp options (Tri4TheAlps) include cycling specific training from Joe, while for triathletes Amelia focuses on open water training in the nearby 25m indoor and 50m outdoor pools and in the 1500m open water lake. With both having completed Iron Man triathlons, they're more than capable of meeting your training needs in a supportive style while at the same time recognising that you're also on holiday.
3. Great food.
Sumptuous evening meals to refill after a day's riding in the mountains. Great breakfasts set you up for the day including British favourites such as bacon butties with Heinz ketchup or HP sauce and Marmite!
4. The location.
The surrounding mountains lends themselves to a range of circular rides at a lower altitude than 'The Grand Cols'. Beautiful village squares lend themselves to long, lazy lunches and the quieter roads allow a slower pace of life and time to enjoy the views. The challenge of a lap of Lac Leman could be the highlight of a week's progressive training and is within the capacity of the regular rider.
5. The atmosphere.
The real feel of a luxurious Alpine mountain lodge with luxurious space and the biggest bear you'll ever see outside of Yosemite!
Sitting on the balcony watching another Alpine sunset we reflected on what a wonderful place Brown Bear Lodge and Morzine were, do we have to leave?
Andy Hodges has been a frequent visitor to the Rhône-Alpes since 2004. He has since ridden, climbed and walked hundreds of kilometres in the region – you can follow in his trail by picking up a copy of his Mountain Adventures in the Maurienne guidebook. You can read his overview of the Maurienne here.