Col de l'Izoard
A view over Briancon from the old Fortress.
The climb begins....
Leaving Briancon, the climb takes you up a river valley for about 12 km
before veering right up an alpine valley with broad farm fields and intimidating
peaks as in this photo.
A view up the alpine valley. I believe the buildings are Lasserou.
The alpine valley forks; this view is of the left fork, but the road takes
the right fork.
Eventually things get steep and the road makes a gorgeous series of switchbacks.
The famous marker at the col.
Apparently the road is very popular with cyclists!
Taking 3 photos at the col brought the rains down. I descended the
far side in a downpour, waited 5 minutes in a covered bus stop at the bottom,
then headed back up in a solid rain. I tried to repeat the photographic
rain dance here this past weekend - we are in the midst of a bad drought -
and now there is rain in the forecast!
There is lots of old Tour and Giro graffiti on the Italian side of the Izoard.
I had fun despite the conditions - at least until hypothermia set in on
the descent to Briancon.
A panorama of the Casse Deserte. It is a crazy place. The debris
flows that come down must be something to see. It looked like they might
even get moving when dry.
The Coppi / Bobet memorial along the Casse Deserte.
The view in the direction of the Casse Deserte from near the summit.
Europe 2002 homepage
on to Mt. Ventoux