Travel guide to Pas de la Graille
Pas de la Graille is a high mountain pass at an elevation of 1.597m (5,239ft) above the sea level located in the department of Alpes-de-Haute-Provence, in France.
Tucked away in the French Prealps, the pass is also known as Col de Frère Jean and connects Valbelle (NO) with Saint-Etienne-les-Orgues (SW). The road is narrow and steep with a lot of serpentines down. This road is mostly also through woods, but as it is steep you will have fine views through the trees here and there. The road surface gets more wobbly and rougher the further down you go, but there is no big problem here.
The road over the pass is completely paved now. It’s called D53. This road is usually open all year, but it can be closed anytime when the access is not cleared of snow. The climb starts in St Etienne Les Orgues and climbs 18km to the summit. As the gradient is quite consistant it is easy to get into a steady cadence and enjoy the ride up.Certain parts of the slope are at 8% (steepest), 7% and 6% but once you clear the forest with 5km left then the slope comes off to 4% with only 1% for the last kilometre. The pass is connected to Signale de Lure by a gravel and challenging road.