The Col du Pre is in a strict sense only a mountain transition (no Alpine pass). No pass sign adorns its height, only a few huts and a dairy can be found up here. The road is in a very poor state. Very narrow, rather to compare with a German land clearing way for agricultural vehicles. Nevertheless it attracts lots of off-road fans and cyclers, that take usually this interesting way. So we meet a troop of elderly men, torturing themselves on their racing bikes over the height, as we took the road down from Lac de Roselend.
The pass road starts at the junction of the Col de Meraillet on 1,605m altitude on the north shore of Lac de Roseland. The road then leads across the dam to the west and rises on the northern slope of the valley to about 1/2 mile further on. After about 2mls you already reach the transition of the Col du Pre in the middle of nowhere. What then shows up is however absolutely nothing for bikes with short handle bars, but for dirt bikes. In infinitely twists and turns, sometimes through forest meadows the very narrow road winds down into the valley to Areches. Caution is required when vehicles come up, so you should approach the curves WITHOUT meeting somebody coming up the road.
Areches itself is a small ski resort, from where the road then a little bit wider with less curves gently runs down the valley further on to Beaufort sur Doron. In this small town, you again can take a right back up to Cormet de Roselend, or continue left to Albertville and about 2miles further down that road take a right then to cross the Col de Saisier over to reach back to Chamonix.
The image above shows the Roselend lake with view to the north shore and the Col du Pre. It can be seen from the right side of the road coming Cormet de Roselend that hits just at the center on a white spot. This is the inn at Col de Meraillet. From there the street of the Cormet de Roselend extends further to the right in the woods, you can see the road to the Col du Pre, which further extends on the north bank to the left across the dam.