By Eric Carter: “My perception of what a fun MTB event should be has been permanently changed…..
I have just returned home from France after attending the Mega Avalanche in Alpe d’ Huez. I hit this race up with a crew from Mongoose to help debut the new Khyber 6.5″ travel frame and to get used to all-mountain race formats of HUGE proportions.
For those who have ridden this event you understand, for those who haven’t it is a must do. Mass start downhill, week long gravity fest and riding with people from 19 other countries. With no set practice schedule, multiple high Alpine valleys linked by Gondola’s and 2 separate race courses to race on during the weekend makes it no wonder that the 1500 field limit fills up every year. Most come for the full week of a gravity induced getaway.
The qualifier course is raced Saturday featuring 4700 feet of descending and the fastest times are in the 30 minute range, then it’s time to get your mind around Sunday, The MegAvalanche course features 8500 ft of decent over a 18 mile course! It takes the fastest guys 50 minutes and starts on a 3 mile long glacier. Have I mentioned that all of this is in a mass start format where you will start with 250 riders for the qualifier and up to 400 if you make it into the MegAvalanche? Note if you miss your qualifying time (like our team mechanic and product manager did) or just want to have fun you still race the course but on your own time after the main event.
I had an awesome time and have now put this on the top of my list as events that I need to do each year. ”