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Steepest climb in Pyrenees.

Mar 11, 2009
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30% gradient near Hautacam in the Pyrenees. Where is the steepest road?

http://www.velopeloton.com/blog.htm

IMG_5872.JPG
 
Jul 23, 2009
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Marie Blanque isn't as steep as the road mentioned in the original post, but it would have to be the steepest section of pyrenees climbing that is a TDF regular. There's about 4km toward the top that average ~11.2%.
 
Jul 27, 2009
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This isn't the Hautacam climb itself

It's a side road up to a little village.

Short, obscure climbs are often much, much steeper than long mountain passes. Generally, if it's worth the effort of building a big pass, it's worth the effort of cutting into the mountainside to avoid extremely steep bits.

Often, the steepest stretches of all are urban streets straight up a hillside.
 
Inch Worm said:
Marie Blanque isn't as steep as the road mentioned in the original post, but it would have to be the steepest section of pyrenees climbing that is a TDF regular. There's about 4km toward the top that average ~11.2%.

Done that one three times... and its a ***** of a climb ... it has 3km near the top at 14% :(
 
rgmerk said:
It's a side road up to a little village.

Short, obscure climbs are often much, much steeper than long mountain passes. Generally, if it's worth the effort of building a big pass, it's worth the effort of cutting into the mountainside to avoid extremely steep bits.

Often, the steepest stretches of all are urban streets straight up a hillside.

You are so right - I never thought about it quite like that before. Even on big climbs when you go through a town you often get these random steep ramps - it happens on that town half way up the Col d'Aubisque - hmm
 
Jul 7, 2009
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Big Ring said:
30% gradient near Hautacam in the Pyrenees. Where is the steepest road?

http://www.velopeloton.com/what's%20new.htm

IMG_5872.JPG

Like your blog. But can you tell me how you made those hill-profiles you have on your blog? I also have a garmin, and have been looking for a place to make profiles of the hills i ride back here in norway (where we actually have some quite impressive clims, allthought they're not in the alps/pyrenees)
 
Mar 11, 2009
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Lovegoat said:
Like your blog. But can you tell me how you made those hill-profiles you have on your blog? I also have a garmin, and have been looking for a place to make profiles of the hills i ride back here in norway (where we actually have some quite impressive clims, allthought they're not in the alps/pyrenees)

Not my blog, but I have stayed there. Great holiday.

http://www.velopeloton.com/guestbook/guestbook.htm

Paddy has a Garmin 705 to record the data and then uses this to make the profiles.

http://www.pedra.altervista.org/salitaker.htm

He took me up another small climb on the side of Hautacam that was 3km at 11%. The main climb to the Ski station is still the best.
 
Aug 5, 2009
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Clearly there can be some shorter, steeper sections of climbs in the Pyrenees, but over a 10km stretch, the two steepest climbs in the Pyrenees are the east side of the Col du Tourmalet and the north side of the Port de Larrau, both of which average 9.5%. The east side of the Port de Pailheres is very close to 9.5% for 10km.

Some other steep climbs to ride are the Col du Soudet from the north, Col de Bagargui from the east, and the Col d'Issarbe from the north.

Bruce
 
Jul 23, 2009
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bhilden said:
The east side of the Port de Pailheres is very close to 9.5% for 10km.

Ah yes. I had a surreal experience up there. Had ridden from Ax Les Thermes, up Col de Chioula and over the empty sun-kissed plateau. Middle of nowhere then, hot afternoon. Took a tiny side road south that dropped down fast then shot back up, maybe 500m at 20% and full of bugs. Almost bonked right there. Then down a cliff face and into a valley that seemed like no one had been in for decades. Had run out of water long ago and thought that if I punctured here I wouldn't be found for weeks.

Turned right and started climbing Pailheres. Didn't realise how tough it was (its stats are worse than Huez). Found a moribund village 4km up and filled my bidons with non-potable water but didn't care. Climbed forever at 10kph up a road as wide as a footpath and for the final few kilometers, through cleared snow drifts 4m high. Photos at the top from a garlicky French granny then a crazy-eyed plunge back into Ax. I was so 'conned' by the descent (and that water?) that I ended up climbing Ax 3-Domaines as well!

Pailheres is a ripper!
 
Jul 27, 2009
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bhilden said:
Clearly there can be some shorter, steeper sections of climbs in the Pyrenees, but over a 10km stretch, the two steepest climbs in the Pyrenees are the east side of the Col du Tourmalet and the north side of the Port de Larrau, both of which average 9.5%. The east side of the Port de Pailheres is very close to 9.5% for 10km.

I can't comment on the Larrau or Pailheres, but I've ridden the east side of the Tourmalet. Don't get me wrong, it's very hard work, but I don't think there's a 10km stretch on it quite that steep. Neither does climbbybike.
 
Mar 11, 2009
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rgmerk said:
I can't comment on the Larrau or Pailheres, but I've ridden the east side of the Tourmalet. Don't get me wrong, it's very hard work, but I don't think there's a 10km stretch on it quite that steep. Neither does climbbybike.

Must agree here. There is 12km that never goes below 8%, this is unmatched by any climb. But I estimate that it is only 8.6% average over the 12km.