Cycling in the Vallée de Joux is an enjoyable way of taking advantage of the summer heat we are currently lucky enough to experience. The Lac de Joux is a small lake and the ride distance is around 22 kilometres. In winter this lake freezes and I have walked over it whilst others have taken the opportunity to ice skate. It is located in the Jura after the Col De Marchairuz if you are coming from the Léman region of Switzerland.
The cycle around the lake is relatively flat for most of the journey. I cycled clockwise starting from the western side of the lake. There is a 13% grade climb to contend with so be ready for it. It is not long but it is steep and you’re almost to the top when you get to the train tracks. Traffic is sparse so you can meet the challenge without stress from cars.
There are two sets of sign posts that you can follow. One is for cross country bikes and the second is for road bikes. I had some fun doing a little of both as my bike allows for this.
Cycling around this lake is pleasant. As you travel to the North of the lake you climb through the mountains with the occasional glimpse of the lake with it’s wind surfers, pedalo and other related sports. You can smell the pine trees and have a number of places to stop for a drink and rehydrate yourself.
When you get to Le Lieu you can follow the road to a second lake along a nice easy road or you can choose the VTT (mountain bike trail. You have a short climb up until you get to dirt roads. These take you over the hill and back down the other side with a very nice view on a secondary lake.
From here you go around and arrive on the Eastern side of the lake where you find two or three restaurants and an epicierie. That’s where I stopped to get a refreshing drink. It felt so good to ingest cool liquid and I was pleasantly surprised by the relatively low price.
From the Eastern Edge of the road you can cycle along the foot path or you can cycle on the road. Out of respect for walkers/hikers I chose to go along the road. On the Southern side of the lake the road is rising slightly so you won’t get too tired. It’s from this side that you have some really beautiful landscapes to appreciate.
Now that I have cycled around this lake I hope to make my way up to larger and larger lakes. Switzerland does have healthy opportunities. Eventually I want to cycle around the Léman once I feel my physical condition is right.