Colle Fauniera is a tribute to Marco Pantani

Colle Fauniera (or Colle Pantani) is a high mountain pass at an elevation of 2,485m (8,152ft) above sea level, located in the Province of Cuneo in the Italian region of Piedmont. It’s said to be the most alluring and unspoiled pass around 2,500 meters in the Alps.

Colle Fauniera/Colle Pantani

Where is Colle Fauniera or Colle Pantani?

Tucked away in the northern part of the country, this pass (known locally as Colle dei Morti, "Hill of the Dead") connects Valle Grana, which ends here, with Vallone dell'Arma (a lateral of the Valle Stura di Demonte). The name Colle dei Morti stems from a fierce fighting occurred in 1744 when French and Spanish soldiers were killed nearby in an ambush by their Savoyard enemies. The views are spectacular, and the green meadows filled with a variety of alpine flowers are home to a large population of marmots.

How long is Colle Fauniera or Colle Pantani?

The pass is 45.8 km (28.45 miles) long, running south-north from Demonte to Ponte Marmora. The road is pretty narrow in parts, and some sections are impassable for two cars at the same time.

Is Colle Fauniera or Colle Pantani paved?

The road was fully asphalted first in 1999 to allow the Giro d’Italia race to pass over it. After its appearance in this race, there are more tourists each year trying to climb the pass.

Is Colle Fauniera or Colle Pantani open?

The road is usually closed from October to June (weather permitting). This remote, demanding, and magnificent road is one of the highest paved mountain passes in Europe.

Is Colle Fauniera or Colle Pantani steep?

Set high in the Colli di Cuneo of the Cottian Alps, the road is pretty steep, with a maximum gradient of 13.77% through some of the ramps. Starting at Ponte Marmora, the ascent is 22 km long, with an elevation gain of 1,567 meters. The average gradient is 7.1%. Starting at Demonte, the ascent is 24.7 km long, with a gain of 1,721 meters and an average gradient of 7%.

Who is Colle Pantani named after?

The summit hosts a huge statue dedicated to the great cyclist Marco Pantani, in memory of his epic climb on the Giro d’Italia ’99 through the steep climbs of the pass. This occurred because the Communal Council Castelmagno in the Italian Piedmont decided to rename the mountain pass and give the official name of "Colle Pantani." The most striking feature of this initiative is that it does not add a name or a second name. It has been officially changed, so the geographical location of the fauna passage renamed the pass, being called Colle Pantani. The change, therefore, will be permanent. The new name is just awaiting ratification from the Institute of Military Geography of Italy, and Pantani's name will appear officially on topographic maps of the region. This is an unprecedented event, as no known cyclist in the world has given his name to a mountain pass.