The Col Collective - Col de la Madeleine

This week we are featuring the epic Col de la Madeleine. The Col Collective's Mike Cotty has done all the hard yards to bring you all the information you need to know to get over this monster.

Images and video by The Col Collective

From the north the Col de la Madeleine is a daunting prospect. Over 26 kilometres in length and climbing up to 2,000 metres elevation certainly doesn’t take an Einstein brain to work out it’s a serious test for both body and mind. 

Despite its relentless length I absolutely love the Madeleine. Its true beauty is that it makes you feel as though you’re really going on a journey, from forest green, past cascading waterfalls, over stone bridges and beyond. I always have the sense that the Madeleine guards the entrance to the high Alps, as if it’s the gatekeeper to the greats. Make it over its summit and the whole world opens up to reveal a playground of peaks.

Key Statistics

  • Length of climb - 26.3km
  • Start elevation - 415m
  • Summit elevation - 2000m
  • Elevation gain- 1585m
  • Gradient (avg)- 6.2%
  • Gradient (max)- 11.5% at 16.5km
  • Gearing Suggestion 34x28 (minimum)

For the full story, detailed maps or to ask a question about this epic climb visit The Col Collective

We've teamed up with awesome team at 'The Col Collective' to bring you insights into the best riding in the world.

Run by Mike Cotty, The Col Collective are all about providing cyclists with the inspiration, education and support needed to reach the summit of the greatest mountain passes in the world. With amazing video overviews, maps, hints and a Q&A forum, The Col Collective should be your first stop when preparing for your European cycling trip!