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Fitness
Cycling

Col des Planches – Legendary Mountain Passes

Cycling · Martigny
Responsible for this content
Valais/Wallis Promotion Verified partner  Explorers Choice 
  • Col des Planches ride
    / Col des Planches ride
    Photo: Alain Rumpf, Valais/Wallis Promotion
  • / Col des Planches ride
    Photo: Alain Rumpf, Valais/Wallis Promotion
m 1800 1600 1400 1200 1000 800 600 400 200 10 8 6 4 2 km Fondation Gianadda Martigny-Croix

The ten kilometres between Martigny-Bourg and the summit of the Col des Planches are among the steepest in the region, with some sections reaching a gradient of 15%!
moderate
10.4 km
1:30 h
914 m
0 m
The first kilometres of climbing from Martigny are merciless: the road launches upward from the start and the slope, which reaches a gradient of 15%, never eases until Chemin-Dessous, the first village along the route. A hairpin curve will offer you a few moments to breathe and shift your attention to the impressive view over the elbow of the Rhône river and the town of Martigny below. The slope then eases up, allowing you to discover the Forclaz valley as the climb continues through larch forests. A brief flat section will give you a moment to save some energy before tackling the final hairpin bends leading to the Col des Planches.

Author’s recommendation

Once you’re back in Martigny, visit the Fondation Pierre Gianadda and the Barryland museum dedicated to St Bernard dogs.

Difficulty
moderate
Technique
Stamina
Experience
Landscape
Highest point
Col des Planches, 1408 m
Lowest point
Martigny Bourg, 495 m
Best time of year
Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec

Safety information

Strictly respect the Swiss traffic rules. Please note that you are running the tour at your own risk and all liability is refused. Please be considerate to plants and animals. For your own safety, wear an helmet every time you ride a bike. Emergency numbers: 144 Ambulance / 117 Police / 1414 Helicopter Rescue (Rega).

Tips, hints and links

More information :

Start

Martigny-Bourg (494 m)
Coordinates:
DD
46.088618, 7.060901
DMS
46°05'19.0"N 7°03'39.2"E
UTM
32T 350091 5105721
w3w 
///teaches.panning.photo

Destination

Col des Planches

Turn-by-turn directions

Your climb starts on the plains in the town of Martigny. Follow the road to Chemin-Dessous, which features a steep slope with a gradient of up to 15%. A hairpin bend gives you a moment to catch your breath and enjoy the impressive view of the elbow of the Rhône river and the town of Martigny below. The slope then eases up, allowing you to discover the Forclaz valley as the climb continues through larch forests. A brief flat section gives you the chance to save some energy before the final hairpin bends leading to the Col des Planches. 

Note


all notes on protected areas

Public transport

Public transport friendly

Travel to Martigny on the SBB Lausanne-Brig line or via the Mont-Blanc Express and St-Bernard Express lines.

Getting there

Take the E27 Martigny/Grand St-Bernard motorway exit, then leave the roundabout in the direction of Col de la Forclaz/Chamonix.

Parking

Parking available at La Porte d’Octodure at the motorway exit. Follow the parking directions in Martigny.

Coordinates

DD
46.088618, 7.060901
DMS
46°05'19.0"N 7°03'39.2"E
UTM
32T 350091 5105721
w3w 
///teaches.panning.photo
Arrival by train, car, foot or bike

Book recommendation by the author

The tourist office in Martigny has brochures and information material about road cycling in the region.

Brochures: Road Cycling Map

Author’s map recommendations

SwissTopo Maps 1:25'000: 1325 Sembrancher

Equipment

We recommend: bike in excellent working order, helmet, gloves and bell, clothing suitable for the weather (always carry a waterproof), food and drink.

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Photos from others


Difficulty
moderate
Distance
10.4 km
Duration
1:30h
Ascent
914 m
Descent
0 m
Public transport friendly Round trip Scenic Refreshment stops available Cultural/historical value Botanical highlights

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