Cycling Col du Tourmalet Luz Saint Sauveur

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Col du Tourmalet - Luz Saint Sauveur

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Basic data & ranking

Average grade: 7.4 %

Length: 19 km

Height start: 711 m

Height top: 2115 m

Ascent: 1404 m

Maximum: 10.2 %

Col du Tourmalet rankings

Difficulty ranking world: 323 (all)
Ranking France: 42 (all)
Ranking Pyrenees: 9 (all)
Difficulty score: 148.69 what?

Col du Tourmalet ratings

(4.9) Overall

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Description

One of the big three in the tour, along with the Aubisque and the Galibier. On the west side (Luz), the Tourmalet a very steady climb of nearly 8%. The climb begins immediately upon leaving Luz-Saint-Sauveur. In the forest, the gradient hovers around 8%. After 4 kilometers, there is a small area where you can catch some breath, but until Barèges it goes steadily up again with even a small piece up to 12% just before Barèges. After Barèges you leave the forest and you will find yourself amidst the meadows. Time to take some breath again, but then it goes back towards 9%. The best however is retained for the final kilometer with an average of 10.5% and pieces up to 13%.
Please note that the Col du Tourmalet is closed from early November to early May.

The Col du Tourmalet is situated in Midi-Pyrenees and belongs to the Pyrenees . Starting from Luz Saint Sauveur, the Col du Tourmalet ascent is 19 km long. Over this distance, you climb 1404 heightmeters. The average percentage thus is 7.4 %.

Look for other sides to climb the Col du Tourmalet.

Since 2005, the Col du Tourmalet will be/was climbed in the following big tour stages:
Tour de France 2012 :  Pau > Bagnères de Luchon on 18/07/2012
Tour de France 2010 :  Pau > Col du Tourmalet on 22/07/2010
Tour de France 2006 :  Tarbes - Val d'Aran - Pla-de-Beret on 12/07/2006

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Profile & route

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Location info

Find all information on climbs and cycling in Midi-Pyrenees and find all climbs in Midi-Pyrenees on a map.

Other climbs close to the Col du Tourmalet: within 10 km - within 20 km - within 50 km

 
Stories, information and comments from Col du Tourmalet climbers
Story by Peter & Rob from London, United Kingdom, submitted on 22/10/2013
We had planned this ride for almost 2 years, but the wait was well worth it. Rob & Peter arrived at Campan mid-morning, a strange place with lots of life-sized puppets placed all over the town. The weather looked bleak with a chill wind, a real shock to the system after leaving our campsite on the Med. We set off onto the Tourmalet together, at a fair pace, as the incline was quite gentle. That was soon to change as we reached the first ‘tunnel’. Robert started to press on and was soon out of sight. Up through the pines and past the mountain streams gave a nice feeling. The writing on the roads gave you the feeling that you were part of the history and battles that had occurred on this epic climb. Robert endured a rough period through La Mongie, but got it back together soon after and powered on towards the summit. Peter, meanwhile, was 1km behind – the grueling final km left to go. As he reached the last hairpin, Robert accompanied him to the summit. The feeling of reaching the summit was quite emotional. We were glad to be part of a band of cyclists who had made such a climb. A quick coffee, then eyeballs out for the descent in fog and drizzle (78 kph). No view from the top as the weather closed. Brilliant ride.
My personal climb rating:
Story by chris bessant from clavering, United Kingdom, submitted on 27/07/2013
As a novice cyclist, I was invited to do some climbs in the Pyrenees by my son and a friend, to celebrate my 50th.....Yesterday we climbed the Tourmalet from the St Marie de Campan side. Beautiful day, wonderful climb, perhaps I`ll go back less than 103kg next time..
My personal climb rating:
Story by Scott Shannon from Cazenovia, United States, submitted on 25/04/2013
I rode the Tourmalet in October of 2012 on a holiday extension from business in Barcelona. It was one of the last fall days warm enough to ride shorts and short sleeves, and I started in the morning chill on my own from Saint Savin. Needless to say, I was plenty warm by the time I reached Bareges, and even though the temperature at the summit had dropped to a breezy 60F or so, I was still hot and happy. I only saw two other riders on the mountain that morning, but the echos of TDF''s past were evident every pedal turn in the miles of painted messages on the tarmac! It was truly an epic ride, and I can''t wait to return next summer!
My personal climb rating:
Story by Brian Grindall from Uckfield, United Kingdom, submitted on 05/10/2012
I climbed the Tourmalet from St.Marie de Campan on Tuesday,September 4,2012 on a tourer carrying 35 lbs of camping gear. It was a cool,clear morning and I got on the climb at about 0900. The first few km to Gripp were ok - a good warm up - and then it started. I got onto the granny ring,found my rhythm and got into my box. Pine forest went on and on and I tapped out a steady tempo until La Mongie came into view - which was almost deserted - and this is where the climb got serious. The last 4 km were challenging - especially the inside of hairpins where you really have to work hard. The cloud cleared and the sun came out as I reached the summit,had my photo taken,put my cape and helmet on and began the descent to Argeles Gazost which,after the ski station car park is an absolute screamer ; watch out for the one-way street going down into Barreges. The whole day was 34 miles and took me about 4 hours - not too bad for a 65 year old weighing well over 200 lbs !
My personal climb rating:
Story by robert mau from san francisco, United States, submitted on 09/07/2012
Hi my friend and I are trying to ride the col du tourmalet. We will be traveling from Marseille by train. Can anyone provide some traveling information and bike rental information for the area. Much predicated. Robert
My personal climb rating:
Story by morgan from Pontypool, United Kingdom, submitted on 04/07/2012
Followed part of the Tour 2011 in June 2012,and decided to give then Tourmalet a run, by car, I gave up two wheels many decades ago, I doubt I could have done this climb even then when relatively fit.



In a car, which only made the whole length in bottom gear anyway, I was both delighted with the wonderful views, as well as feeling great admiration for the complete idiots who ride this trip on two wheels, (actually I love the fact there are such idiots in the world), amongst them as we climbed higher and higher, were at least ten or more who were obviously my own age, that is 70 plus.

I just wish I could be as daft as them.



My wife and I are watching the 2012, and can''t wait for stage 16 so we can live it over, if only vicariously, this year.

Mrs has already stated she wants a return trip next year, possibly if the Tourmalet is included, we will be there to wave the wheelers on their way up, or down according to which side we choose, both of possible.

Bon chance and fair weather to all in stage 16, there will two pairs of eyes going with you all the way, via the TV
My personal climb rating:
Story by Alum3 from London, United Kingdom, submitted on 19/06/2012
Did both sides back to back with a quick ice cream and water stop in Luz in June 2012. They where gritting the road on the way up from Saint Marie de Campan probably to get ready for the TDF, just hoping they clear the loose gravel before the tour comes through.



The descent down to Luz is very very quick. Has to be said not as hard as expected, the perfect weather probably helped, 28C and blue skies and running 34-25 helps as well. What makes this climb special is that you''re cycling in the foot steps of legends, there is even a detour on the way up from Luz sign posted "la Voie Laurent Fignon" in honour of the two times tour winner who passed away in 2010 at far to young an age. The voie fignon is the old route to the summit and rejoins the new road half way up.



Would recommend that anyone doing this does both sides, so you can appreciate the differances between the two climbs.
My personal climb rating:
Story by Ken Hardacre from Milton Keynes, United Kingdom, submitted on 17/06/2011
I am not a good strong rider, and without the help and encouragement of Andy Parkhurst a good friend of mine I could not write this. During a 3 week stay in France to cover the E''tape du Tour and the TdF itself. I was given the opportunity to ride the Tourmalet which was started on the flat road from the Fuel station near the bridge over the river. I had to do it in 3 sections but I finally managed the peak. Why 3 try''s at it? I have Cancer and Diabetes, but I did not ride alone as I took with me the memory of Ian Kennedy who sadly died of Cancer December 2009. I had many stops and starts, and was helped by many riders from all countries with good words and friendship. I also wear a Yellow wrist band, given to me by Lance at the 2009 Giro. I have a lot to live up to. Livestrong. Ken
My personal climb rating:
Story by Julian Foot from Strathpeffer, Scotland, United Kingdom, submitted on 15/06/2011
Did the Tourmalet from the west on Tuesday 14th June 2011. It was a hot, sunny and very humid day so I reckon I finished a good few pounds lighter than when I started. Tried to take it steady and keep my heart rate under control. This is vital given the length. The start seems tough, especially knowing how far you have to climb, but when you get out of the trees and into the sunshine it gets really hard. I stuck to the main road which has a nice smooth surface. On a lovely day I only saw one other cyclist on my side. Anyway, I managed the climb all the way completing in about 1hr45mins (in compact with 28 rear). That last km is really hard but it is well worth putting in a bit of hard work to achieve a lifetime''s ambition. Make sure you put all your gear on for the descent though...it gets really cold.
My personal climb rating:
Story by Bryan Tait from Newcastle Upon Tyne, United Kingdom, submitted on 18/09/2010
Rode the tourmalet with 2 mates the day before stage 16 on this years (2010)tour...the weather was red hot..and after an hours steady climbing I came to the first distance from the summitt sign saying 16km which was pretty demoralising, encouraged on though by the great atmosphere created by thousands of drunken campers lining the route from all over the world...I certinly didnt expect to come across a dutch disco complete with disco lights 2km from the top playing making your mind up bucks fizz...this was a relentless but steady climb and with my 34/28 bottom gear and 45 year old legs I found it quite do-able...I even felt quite emotional on reaching the summitt...as for the views ??? Well that cannot be put into words...this is one of those rides you have to do before you die...absolutely brilliant!!!
My personal climb rating:

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