Photo Credit: will_cyclist / Flickr
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It is accessible in summer via the D902 road, connecting Briançon on the north and the valley of the Guil in Queyras, which ends at Guillestre in the south. There are forbidding and barren scree slopes with protruding pinnacles of weathered rock on the upper south side. Known as the Casse Desert this area has formed a dramatic backdrop to some key moments in the Tour de France, and often feature in iconic 1950s black-and-white photos of the race.
The Col d'Izoard is frequently on the route of the Tour de France. It is classified as an Hors Categorie climb. The southern climb from Guillestre is 15.9 km in length and has an average gradient of 6.9%. The climb from Briançon to the Col is 20 km in length and has an average gradient of 5.8%.
Tour de France
Several of the Tour de France's more memorable moments have occurred on the Col d'Izoard, particularly the exploits of Fausto Coppi, Bernard Thevenet and Louison Bobet. A small cycling museum is at the summit, along with a memorial to Coppi and Bobet.
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