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  #1  
Old 17 Feb 2004
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Veleta Pass at 3480m

Hi,
someone been up there? I have heard that road is one-way, is that true? Asphalt or macadam? Snow? Other tips? Thx,
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  #2  
Old 17 Feb 2004
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This the name of the highest road in Europe, across the Sierra Nevada. When we were there 2 1/2 years ago the NP guards wouldn't let private vehicles past the car park on the Eastern side at about 2500m. Only licenced passenger transport vehicles and construction traffic were allowed through (juggernauts!). :-( I have no idea what they were building up there, but it must be BIG. I believe the Eastern side is all tarmac, but a friend reported the Western side a few years ago was dirt, rough and steep.

If it's open it's only passable for a few weeks a year, otherwise it is snowed in.

Viamichelin shows the top part of the Eastern section as closed/prohibited.

We have found that year that a lot of roads marked in green on Michelin maps in National Parks have been closed to private traffic.

Sorry, but if this road turns out to be closed permanently then the French have it now right by default: they claim that the Col de Restefond-La Bonette is the highest pass in Europe. It's a tad over 2800m and only about 110km from us. :-) Well worth seeing, but go slow and you get to see Marmots in the grass.

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  #3  
Old 8 Mar 2004
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If the Veleta is closed , the highest road -open to traffic- in Europe should be in Italy the Sommeiller Pass, 3005 metres north of Bardonecchia - all dirt/gravel - but is a "cul-de-sac" route since is possible to arrive at the pass , but only foottrails to go further on the other (French) side

Interesting note : the Col de la Bonette is so high because the French made a special detour to arrive higher than the Stelvio pass ...the "real" Col de la Bonette is slightly lower...
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Old 9 Mar 2004
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Hi giorgioXT,
what is your opinion reffering intention to try reach that pass with XTZ 660 and T63 tyres? Too optimistic or a bit of reality?
Have you been up there?
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Old 12 Mar 2004
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Should be no problem ...But fun! during Stella Alpina is made by a lot of street bike also (Once evn a GoldWing arrived on top ..) but beware : the road it's not maintained and conditions may changes a lot after heavy rains or snowfall; the ex-military road was well designed and built (no more than 12,5% ascent) but sometimes may be very rutted ..all stones and boulder.
In every case , it's worth the trip, also for the surrounding zone that is full of nice dirt roads (Mt. Jafferau, Assietta, Lac Gignod etc..)

Ah : the mountain Hut at half route is a very good place to eat , with a nice grass plain to put the tent.
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Old 12 Mar 2004
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Hi GiorgioXT,
tnx for info, that pick is one of my oncoming.
Regards,
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Old 13 Mar 2004
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AnteK: make sure you go at the height of summer. The Stella Alpina rally is held in August. The first time I went there the top of the road had only just been cleared of snow (1.5 m either side), the second time it was blocked by snow.

Oh yes: at the bottom of the road is the infamous traffic sign: "No Bikes"!

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  #8  
Old 14 Mar 2004
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Hi AnteK
yes been up there in august 1987 on a Honda CL 250.
A tarmac road from Grenada thence. I don´t think they took the asfalt away.
Would´t know about the other side coz I slept on the summit and went back to Grenada.

Just go there :-)
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Old 15 Mar 2004
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beddhist: I intend go end of June/ begining of July. Seems like early season to go up there, road will probably be cover with mud and snow, but i can try. I guees that the best period is middle of August. Do you know where I can buy a detalil map of that region?

Goetz: seems like Veleta is closed for bikes from both sides, and I need a special permission to go on top from north side from Grenada. Permisson I can get, I contacted bikers down there, but also, weather conditions allows you to climb up there not before July.

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  #10  
Old 15 Mar 2004
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End of June may be too early, but one's never know ...if it's warm enough 2 days of rain can sweep all the snow; but again , even at mid-August may arrives half-metre of snow in a night.

Best map of the zone is I.G.C. N.1 "Val di Susa"
http://www.omnimap.com/cgi-bin/omni/...ing/igc-50.jpg

on the place You will find it everywhere...
I may send you a viamichelin clipped map with marked the interesting roads .

Ah , no mud on Sommeiller ..it's all rocks
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