STELVIO PASS (Prato Allo)
46.5294° N, 10.4532° E
Every year thousands of cyclists, motorcyclists and drivers flock to pay homage to this magnificent road and for good reason. Used by merchants since medieval times the Stelvio Pass connects Bormio to Valtellina and Trofoi to the Venosta Valley. Completed in 1825 by hand this road displays incredible engineering with many sections built on cliff faces. 48 switchbacks / hairpins were built to get to the summit.
Its nickname? ” Italy’s Roof” although having featured in the Giro d’Italia many times and has inflicted suffering on thousands of cyclists, many will have other names for it.
|1564m||10.5%||10.5%||CLIMBED||AVERAGE GRADIENT||MAX GRADIENT|
The first 8 or so kilometres are not too steep, gently breaking you into the climb. Through the village of Gomagoi until you get to the first set of switchbacks. A stunning start! The beginning of what is to come.
The area around the Stelvio National park full of farmlands and lush green pastures.
Past Trafoi you become surrounded by trees and an intoxicating smell. You are now firmly in the business end of the climb, with the gradients increasing.
The view from above the Trafoi switchbacks.
18 kilometres in you get your first view of the face of the Stelvio Pass. It is a daunting but exciting one, with over 600 vertical meters to go. Half of climbing up Alpe d’Huez.
Be sure to look behind you as the views from the Berghotel are equally epic.
Corner 11 – The most iconic corner of the Stelvio Pass.
Built by hand, and with love and engineered by Carlo Donegani who built many other high passes such as Passo Spluga (Spluggenpass)
Some of the most impressive switchbacks / hairpins ever built. The perfect slingshot for the descent too.
STELVIO PASS SUMMIT
Climbing the Stelvio Pass from the Prato Allo is an extraordinary experience. Is it the world’s greatest road or climb? Well that is subjective, but it should be on everyone’s bucket list.
A climb split into clearly defined sections where each one leaves you wanting to ride faster to see the next. Incredible beauty and drama with every turn, and you never know what mother nature might do either. It is not unusual to see many seasons in one day, so come prepared.
STELVIO PASS CYCLING CLIMB FAQ's
This road is only open from May to October and early/late season is not guaranteed.
From Prato Allo the Stelvio Pass has 48 hairpin bends / 48 switchbacks
There are three ways up the Stelvio: from Prato allo Stelvio, from Bormio and from Santa Maria/the Umbrail Pass in Switzerland.
The Stelvio pass from both sides would be considered a steep climb and from both side you have to ascend more than 1500m.
The best time to visit would be in early June or September. During peak summer months the pass does get very busy. However if you can start early to arrive at the summit before 8AM it will be much quieter.
YOU MAY ALSO LIKE
STELVIO PASS (BORMIO)
The Stelvio Pass needs no introduction. A legend, and the most famous cycling climb in the world. There are three directions to summit this beast, with this being from the town of Bormio.
A climb often forgetten when in the Bormio area, but this giant links onto the Stelvio Pass, and absolutely should be on your bucket list.
GAVIA PASS (BORMIO)
Starting from Bormio this giant of a climb which regularly features in the Giro d'italia will take you to another world as you climb high into the mountains.