Valloire to Lanslebourg ~ On Hannibal’s trail along the Route des Grandes Alpes

July 26th – 30th 2017 (Days 79 – 83) The photo above shows the Hannibal statue near the small town of Bramans. The statue depicts Hannibal and his army of 30,000 men and 30 elephants going through Bramans on their way to Italy via the Col du Clapier. The statue is incredible to see in person as the elephant is so life-like. It is the same size as a fully grown elephant yet every detail from the texture of the elephant’s skin to the rug on it’s back is skillfully crafted. The elephant statue seems to be made from fibreglass whereas the statue of Hannibal is made from metal. It is a brilliant piece of art and kudos all round to everyone involved in it’s construction. My only gripe with the statue is that it should be located 100 km  to the north-east in Bourg Saint Maurice and not Bramans. I wrote extensively last year as to why I believe Hannibal crossed the Alps by going through Bourg Saint Maurice on his way to climbing the Petit Saint Bernard. Ever since Donald Trump became President of the USA, the term “fake news” has often made the headlines. But history too is riddled with falsehoods like for example Marie Antoinette who never said “Let them eat cake”. Fake history is even more prevalent than fake news and her in Bramans is just one such example. There is very little evidence that Hannibal crossed the Alps via the Col du Clapier certainly not enough to justify spending hundreds of thousands of euro on a statue and small rest area in Bramans. In contrast, there is a lot of evidence that he crossed over the Petit Saint Bernard but for some reason, this evidence is ignored and a fake historical narrative is presented instead.


Total distance cycled Wednesday July 26th from Valloire to Modane – 35 km (includes 700m of climbing). Total distance cycled so far on 2017 Tour de Travoy – 4,495 km.


Time to bid adieu to Valloire.


Travoy at the Col de Telegraphe


Marmot Tours van at the summit of the Telegraphe.


Relais du Telegraphe cafe.


The Maurienne river was in flood after all the rain the last few days.


A43 motorway near Fourneaux.


Sign saying 59 km to the Col de l’Iseran.


The town of Fourneaux near Modane.


Camping les Combes in Modane.


Total distance cycled Saturday July 29th from Modane to Lanslebourg – 25 km (includes 600m of climbing). Total distance cycled so far on 2017 Tour de Travoy – 4,520 km.


Camping les Combes in Modane. There were about 20 Dutch cyclists staying at the campsite overnight who were tackling the Route des Grandes Alpes from north to South. However, they had all packed up and left by the time I took this photo. However, I did get talking to a Dutch woman who was accompaning the cyclists in a support vehicle. She told me that she had also accompanied a group of cyclists last year who cycled the entire 660 km of the Route des Grandes Alpes in 36 hours non-stop. There was a documentary made of the entire trip which is up on YouTube in Dutch with English sub-titles. She wrote down the name of the documentary on a piece of paper but unfortunately, I seem to have lost the piece of paper but when I get back to Ireland, I will do a proper search for it and watch the documentary then as I only have a small amount of mobile data left on my computer.


This building is the same shape as a nearby mountain.


Roadside display advertising the ski resort of La Norma.


Redoute Marie Therese or Marie Therese’s fort


Another view of the Redoute Marie-Therese.


Travoy at the Hannibal statue in Bramans.


There is a small rest area beside the Hannibal statue.


Picturesque village of Termignon.


Lanslebourg at the foot of the climb to Mont Cenis.


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