The Jura

Written by Julia Tregaskis-Allen 20 March 2009

Track skiing for as far as the eyes can see..... Track skiing for as far as the eyes can see.....

The best part about my job - on quiet days getting away to explore a new area! NEW for winter 2010 - visit the Jura!

Sitting on the border of both France and Switzerland, the Jura, a limestone plateau, lies very close to Geneva. Steeped in history, geology and gastronomy it also has mountains that go on for miles but unlike the jagged peaks of the Alps it's of the 'Nordic rolling' variety. Therefore being ideal for so many activities; walking, Nordic walking, biking, snowshoeing and of course cross country skiing! Consider this….175km of cross country skiing as a continuous journey! In 1978 the Grandes Traversees du Jura, GTJ, was completed and is a long distance trail for all these sports! Along the way you can travel by which ever means from hotel to hotel or auberge with a small pack covering 20km per day or more!

Cross country ski enthusiasts will always quite rightly recommend the Scandinavian countries multi-day journeys. The Jura, however, also has a great deal of ski potential to offer. So much so you can easily ski for 30km or more without seeing another soul! It’s all track skiing for both skates and classic styles. The holiday potential for exploration is endless, with hundreds of km’s of other track skiing along the way not to mention the snowshoe potential.

In February I completed the ‘Tranjurasienne’ 54km skate race – a great way of seeing some of the route! And my Mum (very apt nearly being Mother’s Day!) needs to be congratulated on her first ever ski event finishing 1st in her age group in the 10km classic!

The GTJ will soon feature on our ski pages for 2010 as both a Scheduled Departure, traversing the region in 7 days, or as a Bespoke holiday.