La Marmotte is a course that traverses Col du Glandon, Col du Telegraphe, Col du Galibier, and Alpe D'Huez. I am yet to find a course tougher than La Marmotte - it climbs 5,180 meters over 174km.
La Marmotte is actually an annual event held every July. Its so popular that the 9,000 open spots typically fill 6 months in advance. Although I wasn't able to ride in the official event, I didn't want to miss this opportunity.
Col du Galiber was definitely the highlight. It is 35km in distance beginning at 718 meters and finishing at 2642 meters. The landscape looks more like a moonscape for the final 10km.
I met my Australian friend, David Leckenby, and his family in Valloire for lunch. David and I rode the Morzine cyclosportif a couple of weeks earlier. After lunch, David and his son, Guy, joined me for the ascent. Having company certainly made Galibier a lot easier.
Here is the footage from the day.