The best passes in Béarn by bike!

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The best passes in Bé ...

The Pyrenean Valleys of Béarn are made up of three main valleys : Ossau, Aspe and Barétous. It is a territory of water, dug by the Gaves : Gave d'Oloron, Aspe, Ossau,… Between rivers, pastoral valleys and vertiginous peaks, it lends itself well to the practice of cycling . Of course, the beauty of its panoramas is deserved and the ascent of the passes requires a good sporting level. Beginner refrain ! This is why we invite you to consult the AADT (Béarn Pays Basque Tourist Attraction and Development Agency) fact sheets which will give you all the practical information and other links in our good addresses.

Photo d'ouverture : Le Col d'Aubisque © Guide du Bearn


The Pierre-Saint-Martin pass


The Pierre-Saint-Martin massif is located in the town of Arette , in the Barétous valley. Green resort, its slopes are ski down in winter and climb up by bike in summer. The most popular route for cyclists is the one that leads from Arette to the Pierre-Saint-Martin pass. The pleasures are varied: valley and meadow, forest and panorama of the Pyrenees. At the sporting level, it is the same. You follow gentle slopes and steeper ones . Like all passes, the climb is difficult but overall there is no noticeable difficulty. On the AADT page, you will find all the necessary information, the topo route, the GPX route ...
If you need a bicycle, you can rent one from the MTB agency in Barétous .

To make matters worse, you can leave from Licq-Athérey to reach Arette. Between deep valleys and high passes , some coasts are frighteningly uneven . This option is reserved for experienced runners . For more information, here is the reference page on this journey .

You are right next door and we cannot help but make you discover this exceptional site , for a well-deserved rest: the cave of la Verna is the largest underground room in the world. And to live with us this unusual experience, we take you on a report .


Col de La Pieere Saint-Martin © AdobeStock_poliki
Col de La Pieere Saint-Martin © AdobeStock_poliki

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The Col d'Hourataté


In the Aspe valley, from Bedous to Osse-en-Aspe, the walk is short to attack the Col d'Hourataté. And the word is well chosen because the difficulties are not lacking and make it intense. Here is the technical description page of this pass . In the starting village, here are our rental providers: Rando Bike or at VTT Nature . You will also find a geocaching circuit there .


The Abérouat pass


We leave Bedous, but this time in the direction of Lescun. At first, the climb seems almost too easy and yet you might be surprised. Its second part is aimed at an informed public and of a good level , especially at the end. So that this does not become an insurmountable ordeal, be sure to look up and stop to admire the beautiful panoramas that are offered to you. And above all, prepare your course well by following this link . To relax your legs a bit, go down the pass to visit the typical village of Lescun, within its circus and Lake Lhurs .

For an activity with children, go to the Ludopia space. You will share unusual sensations with your family to awaken all your senses.


Lescun © AdobeStock_Roger
Lescun © AdobeStock_Roger


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The PourtalET pass


We enter the Ossau valley to reach the Pourtalet pass , on the Spanish border . The journey does not present any particular difficulty, apart from its irregularity . On the other hand, it has a strong tourist interest. You are in the heart of the Pic du Midi massif . You can enjoy a moment of rest at Lake Fabrèges in Artouste . You are also not very far from Lake Ayous . You also pass through beautiful villages , such as Laruns. Do you need equipment? Contact Locaski Outdoor or Pyr-Bike .

For a family moment nearby, the bear park offers beautiful walks to discover the flora and wild fauna . Follow our blogger in the footsteps of the bear ...


Col de Pourtalet photo @ Guide du Bearn
Col de Pourtalet photo @ Guide du Bearn

Aubisque pass


We return to Laruns, to reach the Aubisque pass , made famous by the Tour de France . The route takes you through pastures and leads you to the top of the peaks of Ger and Médaa . You will pass by the thermal spa of Eaux-Bonnes which is worth stopping by. And if you are with your family, to please the children , go to the Suspended Forest, a tree climbing park, in the beech grove of Gourzy . In Eaux-Bonnes, the Siala Mountain Bike Circuit agency offers tours and rentals .

  
Photo : Col d’Aubisque @ guide du bearn
Photo : Col d’Aubisque @ guide du bearn


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Marie Blanque pass


In Escot, the Marie Blanque pass is famous. The route allows a gradual ascent in difficulty , which is a significant asset, to face an exceptional slope of 14% . Do you want to continue the ride? At the start of the pass, we tested the ascent of the Pic d'Escurets for you .

Do you want to change your mount? The equestrian center " The horses of Benou " offer you a Pyrenean ride . To immerse yourself in the pastoral culture of the Ossau valley , Ferme Frady welcomes you for a tasting of its cheeses and a discovery of its Mohair creations .


Photo : Col d’Aubisque @ guide du bearn

Photo : Col d’Aubisque @ guide du bearn

Photo: Col de Marie Blanque, at the top

Other cool routes


We complete the tour by returning near Arette. In this town, there are no less than 56 routes! Whether on the Chemins de Saint-Jacques de Compostelle or on the GR10 , you will inevitably find what you are looking for for a bike ride.


To discover the Ossau valley, the Community of Municipalities has created a site dedicated to cycle tourism with routes to download .

The AADT Béarn Pays Basque site provides you with a site specific to the region's passes , very fun, with challenges and lots of photos to make you want to…

To cycle with the family, we have selected the most beautiful bike rides in the Béarn for you .

The Haut Béarn tourist office website lists all kinds of activities to do all year round on the peaks of the Pierre-Saint-Martin massif, including many mountain biking tours.

To change, we go in the other direction and we leave the Pyrenees to reach the territory of the heart of Béarn and Vic-Bihl . Whatever your mount, follow our blogger on her roadtrip in the Barétous valley .

Here is our loop completed. Between peaks and valleys, there are beautiful tours in prospect for lovers of old stones . Our article presents our selection of the most beautiful villages in Béarn . Did this discovery of Béarn by bike make you want to know more? To get to know this beautiful country better, see our page .


Did you like our article? Find more on our Blog . Follow us on the Guide du Béarn-Pyrénées Facebook page and on Instagram @guidebearnpyrenees.

Article written by Stéphanie Tempier for the Guide du Béarn Pyrénées.


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