First of all, the average grade of 5,5% includes the descent from the top of the Télégraphe, the col you have to cross to get to Valloire, where the Col du Galibier actually starts.
Without this this descent, the average grade would be almost 7%, more than 2 vertical kilometers for a distance of little over 30 km. Pretty impressive, and so is the climb.
While the Telegraph exceed easier than what comes next, it's not a turn-on. After the heavy first kilometers, the climb gets less arduous. Time to save some forces for the Galibier. After a dozen kilometers you reach the mostly pretty busy top of the Telegraph and you get rewarded with a fairly gentle descent on a wide road to Valloire. Here you can pick up speed.
In the ski resort Valloire, the Col du Galibier starts off. After a wall of +10 % just outside the village, the climb gets flatter along the river Valloirette. At the restaurant Plan Lachat the real climb begins. You pass the 2,000 meter mark while the climb gets steeper and steeper. The average grade drops no more below 8 % and often you see white and black snow. The last kilometers get even tougher, up 9%. But the reward is a marvellous view into the deep Alps on both side of the top. Look what you've done!
The Col du Galibier is situated in Rhone-Alpes
and belongs to the
Starting from St Michel-de-Maurienne,
the Col du Galibier ascent is 34.9 km long. Over this distance, you climb 1924 heightmeters.
The average percentage thus is 5.5 %.
Look for other sides to climb the Col du Galibier.
Since 2005, the Col du Galibier will be/was climbed in the following big tour stages:
Giro d'Italia 2013 : Cesana Torinese - Col Du Galibier on 19/05/2013
Tour de France 2011 : Modane > Alpe-d’Huez on 22/07/2011
La Marmotte 2010 : Marmotte 2010 on 03/07/2010
La Marmotte 2009 : Marmotte 2009 on 04/07/2009
La Marmotte 2008 : Marmotte 2008 on 05/07/2008
Col du Galibier from St Michel-de-Maurienne in 3D, on Googleearth!
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