What makes trailAddiction special is, quite simply, a deep-rooted passion for mountain biking.”
What makes trailAddiction special is, quite simply, a deep-rooted passion for mountain biking. By sharing this passion with all our guests, many find a whole new dimension to the sport they already love so much. A large majority of our guests return to stay with us in following years, and of course, we are always delighted to see them again.
trailAddiction began way back in 2001 with two friends from University, who wanted to show their mates from back home a ‘different’ way of riding bikes, for fun, that was very much in the Alpine and using uplifts, but very much NOT in the brake-bump-infested bike parks of Les Gets and Morzine.
That was, to take a ski lift or shuttles (or thumb a lift!) to the highest point in the valley, then pick a hiking trail (or sheep-track, or ancient Roman military road) and follow it all the way back to the bottom.
Those two original founders of what became trailAddiction were Ali Jamieson and Ash Smith. Ash eventually went on to create the Trans-Provence, and Ali was the architect of the Trans-Savoie. The point is, trailAddiction was always about riding “Enduro” before Enduro even was a word! That said, trailAddiction has never been a provider of Enduro-specific holidays, since that’s too much ‘in a box’ for our liking. We simply do our best to provide the kind of riding you want to ride, in a beautiful, natural, Alpine environment. The only catch is, you’re going to need to enjoy riding sweet single-track, and lots of it!
With Ali’s passion and drive, plus a lot of top guides who helped us along the way, trailAddiction grew through reputation and word-of-mouth to become what was probably the biggest chalet-MTB-holiday provider in the world, providing literally thousands satisfied customers with a week-to-remember, as well as running spin-off events such as Enduro2 not only in France but also Switzerland, and even New Zealand.
Managing such a large operation across several continents eventually became unsustainable, and for Ali as the only director, the element of personally sharing new MTB adventures with customers on an individual basis, had become lost in a torrent of paperwork and admin, somewhere. At the end of 2016, trailAddiction closed its doors and the company was wound up. The staff went off to follow various new passion-projects, whilst Ali relocated to New Zealand in search of new trails and new adventures…where he indeed found quite a few.
But the call of the Alps never faded, so in 2019, Ali returned to the Tarentaise region (greater-Les-Arcs) and the rest was pretty much inevitable. The mountains were still there, and so were the trails…in fact, there were still dozens still out there just waiting to be discovered, as they always had been.
2020 is about going back to basics for trailAddiction, with a scaled-down, one-chalet operation, and a maximum of 3 guides & 2 shuttle vehicles at any time. We’ve gone back to Chalet Chazalet as our favourite from previous years – having the best balance of modern facilities and rustic Alpine charm, with superb en-suite facilities in every room. This smaller-scale setup (by former trailAddiction standards, at least) allows the best-possible degree of flexibility to react to weather, trail conditions, and the riding style and preferences of our customers on any given week. Best of all, Ali hopes to ride and guide with each of the customers on an individual basis, and in that way to share and enjoy in riding the best trails in the world (and talking about them over a cool beer afterwards), with each and every one of his customers.
Unlike some other alpine operators, we are not a winter ski chalet looking to expand into the summer market. Neither are we a general alpine summer tour operator. In fact, we don’t operate in the winter at all, and we have no affiliation to any winter activities. Nor do we organise other sporting activities in the summer. Heck, we don’t even have any children of our own because we’ve been too busy riding bikes and pouring over trails maps all this time! 🙂
In this way, our focus is 100% mountain biking. In the off-season, we are busy trail-finding and preparing for the following summer. (Currently trailAddiction founder Ali spends his time offering guided backcountry adventures in New Zealand, at least until the snow melts again in the Alps, Dorian runs a guiding operation on the Volcanic French Colony Island of Reunion in the Indian Ocean, and Daniel Organises guided trips in Czech Republic and Spain.
The possibilities for lift-assisted Alpine adventures are endless in this part of the Alps, and we can’t ready to share some with you this year.
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trailAddiction is the team behind the revolutionary Trans-Savoie Big Alpine Enduro (still the only multi-day Enduro event in the world to combine Ski-lift uplifts and a multi-day touring itinerary). Enduro2 – the original pairs-format social enduro was also a trailAddiction spin-off and is rapidly gaining popularity in the Enduro world with events in 3 countries and across 2 hemispheres.
In summary, you won’t find a group more dedicated to the cause than we are. We are confident the riding we offer really is top-class and truly unique in the world of mountain biking holidays.
From humble beginnings in 2002, trailAddiciton grew to its peak in 2016 with a team of over 25 dedicated, very experienced, enthusiastic staff who love mountain biking and the alpine environment as much as you do! However a change in outlook by the owners has led to a rapid downsizing of operations…basically Ali wanted more time out guiding with his customers, and less time behind a laptop and managing the operation. We are now small enough (again) to know each customer by name, yet are well-established enough to provide exceptional quality and reliability of service with a large range of ability-streamed groups for you to choose to ride in, all at outstanding value-for money.
In case you are worried, each of our guides is French-Qualified and Certified – and we are a French registered company (in other words, fully Brexit-proofed!).
We look forward to sharing with you a magnificent mountain biking adventure, very soon.
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