Riders considering the 2015 Etape du Tour should use this opportunity to familiarise themselves with the Col du Glandon.
The 19.7km climb will feature in the Tour de France for the 14th time this summer as part of stage 19 of the race, with sportive riders taking on the brutal ascent on Sunday July 19.
In this latest installment of the Col Collective, Mike Cotty returns to a climb which featured as part of his epic 677km non-stop ride across the heart of the Alps from Évian-les-Bains to Nice.
“Eleven hours from the start and with 250km in the legs all seemed to be going ok, until I hit the latter slopes of the Glandon and suddenly beauty turned into the beast within,” said Cotty.
“The wind funnels downs from the top of the mountain as the gradient kicks up and hangs above double figures for what seems like forever. However, don’t be put off by my lunacy. The Glandon may have made me hurt so very much in the past but it’s also one of the most enchanting mountains I’ve ever experienced and for that reason I find myself continually coming back for more.
“There are moments when you’re barely moving and then suddenly, as you approach the summit, you can feel pure life being inhaled back into your lungs. It’s as if the mountain gods have taken a ribbon of tarmac and thrown it out of the sky from 2,000 metres to form a 20km playground of pure escapism. Now that’s the sign of a truly special climb.
“Anyone that’s doing L’Etape du Tour in 2015 is in for an absolute treat.”
Elevation gain: 1,441m
Average gradient: 7.3 per cent
Maximum gradient: 11 per cent