The Mortirolo Pass (1,852 m)
Opening date: June , 2016
The Mortirolo Pass connects the provinces of Sondrio (Mazzo in Valtellina) and Brescia (Monno).
It is open from late spring to late autumn and after being considered a minor route for many years, it is now among the most popular alpine passes and part of the Giro d’Italia.
Its gradient is pretty marked and the pass can be accessed from both Brescia and Valtellina. The Valtellina route is considered one of the toughest and most challenging in Europe with a vertical drop of 1300 m in just 12.5 km and an average gradient of 10.5% (it reaches up to 18% in places).
Professional cyclists complete it in less than 45 minutes, and every year thousands of amateur cyclists take up the challenge.
Several international champions have made cycling history on this route. Marco Pantani was one of them, when he surprised the world with a memorable sprint in 1994 when he was just an emerging cyclist. A sculpture of him on his bike, looking back at all other cyclists behind him is now located at Piaz de l’Acqua.