The Col d’ Aubisque !

Well here I am taking one from the vaults as the saying goes. This one is a memorable road warrior trip of the many taken into and by the Pyrénées mountains between my dear France and Spain over the years. This one was steep and high but we love it, great memories of crossing by the Col d’ Aubisque (mountain pass). Hope you enjoy it as we did!

One of the memorable mountain pass over the years for us and a great sporting history to boot. Here is my small contribution to the Aubisque pass.

The Col d’ Aubisque pass is in the central French Pyrenees, culminating at 1,709 meters, about 40 km from Tarbes and Pau in the department of Pyrénées-Atlantiques no. 64, in the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region. It is dominated to the south by the peak of Ger (2,613 meters). It is located in the town of Béost and is generally closed to traffic in early December and reopened in early May due to heavy snow avalanches. The Aubisque pass is supported by the Col de Soulor pass, that connects the Ossau valley on the towns of Arudy / Laruns / Gourette to that of the Gave de Pau on the towns of Argelès-Gazost by the ledge road that crosses the Litor cirque, in the upper part. from the Ouzom valley, the road D 918! Magnificent views on the road warrior trips!!

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The Col d’Aubisque pass is a thermal road, built thanks to the Empress Eugenie, wife of Napoleon III, who wanted to be able to link Eaux-Bonnes (good waters as in thermal) to the Argelès valley and its various spa towns that she helped to promote through her many trips. This thermal road was completed in 1864.

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The Col d’Aubisque pass is an important summer tourist destination, especially for amateur cyclists. There is a stele in memory of Lucien Buysse , a Belgian cyclist and winner of the tour de France in 1926. He best known for having won in 1926, after more than seventeen hours in the saddle, the Bayonne-Luchon stage, a dantesque stage of anthology, generally considered as the most extraordinary stage in history. of the Tour de France, fully run in the pouring rain. There are giant sculptures of bikes in the colors of the Tour de France (one yellow, one white with red dots, one green). Nowadays, it is a starting point for excursions and a winter sports center. It is close to the Gourette ski station. The ascend/rise of Aubisque is an annual mountain race taking place at the end of August with 18.7 km and 1,204 meters of elevation from the town of Laruns.(which where we past too!)

The Col d’Aubisque pass is an integral part of the “legend of the Tour”. While the organizers of the first tours did not dare to approach the high mountains, the step was taken in 1910 with the first major Pyrenean stage. Since then, the Tour de France has crossed it 73 times, more than one year out of two. A new ascent of the Col d’Aubisque was scheduled during the 6th stage of the Vuelta of Spain 2020, but the passage of this pass was canceled and the stage modified due to the ban on passage in France following the resurgence of the pandemic of COVID-19. Too bad indeed.

Some webpages to help you plan your trip here and be ready to climb either bike or car worth it fun sublime views of the wonderful Pyrénées.

The history of the col d’Aubisque by the cyclists: http://www.memoire-du-cyclisme.eu/eta_tdf/aubisque.php

Another cyclist webpage on the ascend of the Col d’Aubisque : https://www.cyclos-cyclotes.org/archives/col_aubisque.html

The Gourette tourist office on the Col d’Aubisque in French: https://www.gourette.com/decouvrir/le-col-d-aubisque/

The Pyrénées tourist office of the Béarn on the Col d’Aubisque route Laruns to Eaux Bonnes in French: https://pratique.tourisme64.com/itineraire/laruns/col-d-aubisque-la-reference/ITIAQU064FS0003O.html

There you go folks, another dandy off the beaten path road warrior trip into the sublime, gorgeous, wonderful Pyrénées. Hope you have enjoy the run as I

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!

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2 Comments to “The Col d’ Aubisque !”

  1. I have ridden up this one

    Liked by 1 person

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