Starting point of this demanding tour, comprising 59 miles in length and 7874 ft in altitude, via the Col dŽIzoard (7743 ft), is the French village Briançon at 4334 ft above sea level which is after Davos the second highest city in Europe.
The first ascent to Col dŽIzoard is not long in coming, because shortly after the start the road begins to gain significantly in altitude.
On the well built and not very steep road D902, we ride 7.5 miles through the enormous gorge of Cerveyrette to Cervières (5367 ft).
We ride many bends through the Bois de Péméant, with inclines up to 12%, towards the pass.
Soon we leave below not only the Refuge Napoléon in the larch forest but also the tree line and catch sight of the huge fields of rock formations, which were created by the severe erosion of this mountain region.
A few feet in altitude have to be overcome to reach the pass summit, at 7743 ft above sea level.
On the upper part of our rapid descent to Guillestre (3281 ft) we can enjoy fantastic views of rock spires and -pyramids standing on scree slopes.
The return journey begins immediately with an ascent. 328 ft in altitude have to be overcome on a length of almost 1.2 miles before the inclines level off at between 3 - 5 % over the next 6.2 miles.
10.5 miles later we reach a divergence where we do not continue straight on to the Col dŽ Agnel but turn left to the Col dŽIzoard.
Now begins a 9 mile long demanding stretch of road.
In many bends we climb up to the pass tackling inclines between 8-10%, which are interrupted by only short flat sections.
Finally having arrived on top of the Col dŽIzoard, at 7743 ft above sea level, after many sweat-inducing miles, we enjoy the descent to our starting point Briançon.
Distance: approx. 95 km
Length: 186 Minutes