How many times do you get to do a Top 100 World Climb and end at the foot of a glacier?
This is one of 7 Top World and 5 Top 100 World climbs within 25 miles of Sion, Switzerland (about 40 miles from the eastern edge of Lake Geneva). We believe this is one of the top climbing areas in the world - i.e., it has one of the greatest concentrations of difficult climbs anywhere in the world - it may be number 1 in terms of the most Top 100 climbs within 50 miles.
This is a tough climb at 15 miles, 6,325’ and 7% average grade (¼ mile 20.7%, ½ at 15.2%, and one full mile averaging double digits at 12%).
The climb begins in Conthey and initially winds its way through many lovely hillside vineyards up to and through several villages/communities until moving above treeline at mile 13 (6,500’) and offering spectacular views of the surrounding mountains.
Vibrant vineyard area
Agricultural communities on the way up the climb
Several hairpins along the climb
The middle portion of the route has much pasture land, some waterfalls and many grazing cows.
We encounter a couple tunnels tunnels near the top so be sure to bring at least tail lights - we are also above treeline by the time we enter the tunnels and there are breathtaking views of distant and dramatic mountains along this segment of the climb.
Start of steepest kilometer 15.5 (13.8%)