Hautacam and Col de TramasselBy Will • Sep 9th, 2012 • Category: Climbs, Cycling, pyrénées
For an overview map and details on every route I have cycled in the Pyrenées see here.
Painting on house at very start of climb:
Hautacam is a ski station above Argelès-Gazost in the Pyrenées. It has appeared 4 times as a mountain top finish in the Tour de France (’94, ’96′, ’00, ’08) – see small photo below for the stage winners.
If you like steady gradients to get a rythym, then you will hate Hautacam. Every time there is an easy stretch it means a 10%, 11%, or steeper stretch is imminent. I started laughing after this pattern repeated itself several times. Hard work.
This region is spoiled for fabulous climbs and Hautacam left me a little cold. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a very, very good climb. But …. if you only have a limited time in the region then there are several better choices.
At the top is a sign indicating the finish. But continue because at the FAR side of the big parking lot is a sign for the offical Tour de France finish.
And still, don’t stop there. Recently, the 1.2 km continuation to Col de Tramassel has been paved. You’ll see the sign. A nice restaurant at the end of the paved road.
Perhaps I am a little negative on this climb due to all the “traffic” jams