Alpe Du Zwift Route 101: A Beginner’s Guide to Hitting the Alpe

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Thinking about doing the toughest climb in Watopia? Looking to get a better time? Then you should take a look at our Alpe du Zwift route guide. 

Here we take a quick rundown of the Alpe du Zwift route, including where you can ride it, tactics, and prizes at the top. 

The route is based on Alpe d’Huez in the French alps. However, it’s a little shorter than the ride the pros do in the Tour de France. 

Check out the video below if you’re interested in comparing the two.

Alpe du Zwift – distance, height, and gradients

You will ride a total distance is 12.24 km. But this doesn’t include getting there. In terms of height, you will climb a touch over 1000 metres. 

It’s not the biggest climb in Zwift – that goes to Ven-top in the France guest world. 

Alpe du Zwift is a 21 hair-pinned climb. The sections at the lower end are longer. 

The steepest section is in the first half, where the gradient kicks up to a max of 14%. But there are plenty of 10% parts as well. 

The average gradient is around 8%. 

Things get a little easier in the second half, especially as you get near the top. 

How to get to the route 

As things stand, you need to be Level 10 or above to do the Alpe. That said, you can do it if you are riding in a group or with another rider who is over 10. 

There are a number of routes that take in Alpe du Zwift. For example, there’s the Tour of Fire and Ice, which takes in all the mountains. Even a decent rider will take around 3 hours to complete. 

The Four Horsemen, takes in several climbs, including the Volcano. 

Road to Sky – Shortest Route to the Alpe

But the shortest route to the Alpe is Road to Sky. It features a short 15-minute ride through the jungle before you get turned to hit the first climb. 

You can ride it any time as it’s in Watopia and. It is not part of the guest world calendar. 

Prizes for riding the climb

Powerups are littered along the course. However, reach them before they expire. But there is something better waiting at the top. 

Stick out the ride and you see the Wheel of Fortune. Prizes range from the mundane like socks, to experience points.

The best prize of all is the set of ultra lightweight Meilenstein wheels. 

Meilensteins are the best wheels in Zwift and this is the only place you will find them. 

Of course, there is also the Tron Bike to aim for. 

Or, on the way down, switch to the Tour of Italy challenge. You can get the extra miles by going into a tuck and rolling. You also get the XP points. 

What sort of time should I aim for? 

A decent time is under an hour. Some of the fastest times are under 40 minutes. 

One consistently great thing about the route is that people struggle to get under the hour mark. 

Tactically, the only way to ride it is to pace yourself through to the last corners.Just find a decent gear you can grind out and keep going. 

At around 5 to 4 the course levels out and its time to stick it in the big ring and throw everything in. 

Sorry, there’s no science to it. 

That said, if you want to can amend your trainer difficulty in Zwift. This regulates how fast the change in gradient comes on. 

Looking for more

Feel like that was easy? Then look at trying Ven-Top in the France guest world. It is based on Mont Ventoux and is over 1,500 metres.


How long is Alpe du Zwift?

Alpe du Zwift is 12.24 kilometers long. It has a maximum gradient of 14%. 

How to tackle the Alpe du Zwift for the first time

Pick a gear you can hold and keep going. Keep going until corner 4 and the route levels off a little. Also, adjust the trainer difficulty if it is too hard.

What do you get for completing the mountain?

XP points, meters for the Tron Bike, and best of all, the chance to win a set of Meilenstein wheels. 

What is the quickest way to Alpe du Zwift?

The quickest route to get to Alpe du Zwift is Road to Sky. 

Is Alpe d’Huez the same as Alpe du Zwift?

Zwift uses the GPS data from Alpe d’Huez to create Alpe du Zwift. However it is around 200 meters shorter than the route the professionals ride. 


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