Route: D5, D205T & SP251 Chateau-Queyras to Casteldelfino (27 miles)
The Col Agnel – Colle dell’Agnello in Italian – is a mountain pass in the Cottian Alps, west of Monte Viso between France and Italy. It links the Queyras valley (Hautes-Alpes) with Pontechianale in the province of Cuneo, Piedmont. Despite being the third highest mountain pass in Europe it’s somewhat unknown and not heavily used, despite being the highest international pass of the Alps. The climb from Chateau-Queyras on the French side is almost 13 miles long at an average gradient of 6.6%. At Molines-En-Queyras there’s a subtle junction – a sharp left that runs uphill and through the village – where the D5 turns onto the D205T. You’ll know if you’ve missed it because ultimately the D5 is a dead end and you’ll find yourself retracing your steps back to the junction. Casteldelfino on the Italian side of the climb is 14 miles long at an average gradient of 6.5%. When we first rode this pass in 2008 the entire pass was being resurfaced in time for its first appearance in the Tour de France. The Agnel was crossed for the first time on 20th July during stage 15 of the 2008 Tour de France. This really is a superb not to be missed biking road with very little traffic.