The third highest road pass in the Alps, after the Col de l’Iseran and Passo dello Stelvio, the Col Agnel is surprising in that it is relatively unknown compared to its iconic neighbours.
Linking France’s Haute-Alpes with the Italian province of Cuneo, the ‘quiet giant’ boasts snow-capped peaks, an abundance of nature and a deserted road which Mike Cotty says ‘looks like it’s been stitched to the side of the mountain with a needle and thread’.
“I’ll never forget the first time I rode the Col Agnel many years ago,” he adds. “It was only when we met an English school teacher at the summit, and admired the view, that we really understood how magical the Agnel is.
“At 2,744 metres high and with a character like no other, this is one mountain journey you really can’t afford to miss.”
Cotty returned to the 21km ascent, which has an average gradient north of six per cent, for the latest instalment from the Col Collective.
Watch as he guides you up the ascent in the video above.
Elevation gain: 1,364m
Average gradient: 6.6%
Max gradient: 10%