map of area 2

Col d’Arantgaitz (ARA)

Height: 832m

Location: Pass at a farm, WSW of Tardes-Sorholus.

General Comments

Valid as claim between Assurucq and Alcay, via Potto. See Col du Landerre, 1072m for details of approaches.

Road Condition and Hazards

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Facilities

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Col d’Arnostéguy (ARN)

Height: 1236m

Location: On the border due south of St. Jean PdP.

General Comments

Probably very scenic, but rather wayward as a through route, hence few reports. Maps suggest numerous possible variants of approach, all difficult! At least three are surfaced; all are in France, with only a footpath into Spain. The east side from Beherobie was reported a bit rough (1995 or earlier) but is more steadily graded. The northern and western approaches are extremely abrupt between 300m and 1000m. The upper reaches are much flatter, with a geographical complication of subsidiary cols among pastures. The pass is a short walk from the supposed spot where the legendary Roland died in an ambush (Col de Bentarte, 1337m).

Col d’Orgambide, 988m is up track just off east side of Col d’Arnosteguy. The roughstuff guide, page 4, shows the area and its associated tracks in more detail.

Pic d’Arradoy, 660m. Just north of St Jean PdP. Tarmac lane runs out at belvedere showing the town, half way up. The rest is rough stuff, awkward near the top. No peak views due to woodland. Not recommended.

Road Condition and Hazards

No reports other than old comment above.

Facilities

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Col d’Asconzabal (ASC)

Height: 503m

Location: On minor D120, in sparsely populated hills east of St Jean PdP.

General Comments

21% section on northern approach from Gamarthe. No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Road Condition and Hazards

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Facilities

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Col Bagargui (BAG)

Height: 1327m

Location: NW of Larrau.

General Comments

(See also Col d’Orgambideska, 1284m.) The higher summit apparently results from rebuilding work! A quiet route, popular with French OCD Members. Very green landscape. Hard climb from St. Jean via first the Col de Burdincurutcheta, then descending to 1000m (snack bar) before final climb to Bagargui. The east side from Larrau is also fairly difficult, descending first to 500m before climbing steeply, beyond the trees.

Just west of Col Bagargui a lane of unconfirmed (possibly tarmac) surface runs south for a short way. It crosses three passes in quick succession - Col Mehatze, 1383m, Col Sensibile, a.1540m and Leherra-Murkhuillarko Lepoua, 1528m, to designated mountain bike trail.

A very dramatic track, running north off the Col Bagargui itself, descends ridge hard by Pic des Escaliers before transverse crossing of Col d’Arhansus, 928m on way to D117 road.

ENE of Col Bagargui,(but not accessible from there) is an evidently scenic ridge called Bostmendiette, a. 1000m. Lanes from Tardets become tracks to the summit - a circular ride looks possible.

Road Condition and Hazards

Good surface in 1999.

Facilities

Café and shop at Bagargui summit, amidst the small ski station. Good peaceful campsite above Iraty on the west side. Other sites at Arrens and Marsous on the east side. Larrau has a recommended hotel (on the left, as you enter the town travelling east from these passes).

Col de Bouezou (BOU)

Height: 1009m

Location: Part of Col de Houratate,1009m.

General Comments

A claim only if crossing via D341 and D441 roads, between Lees-Athas and Lourdios-Ichere, with about 500m of ascent on each side. Otherwise it is only part of Col de Houratate,1009m. Lees-Athas descent is potentially very scenic, but no reports.

Road Condition and Hazards

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Facilities

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Fontaine Bugalaran (BUG)

Height: 500m

Location: SW of Oloron Ste Marie.

General Comments

Minor pass with water source in Bois de Gouloume. D659 lane forms approach from Aramits, while north side is rough stuff. No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Road Condition and Hazards

North side is rough stuff. No other reports.

Facilities

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Col de Burdincurutcheta (BUR)

Height: 1135m

Location: SE of St. Jean PdP on a direct route to Larrau.

General Comments

Attractive road, less quiet since a new route for Tour de France was built in 1985. The summit (no sign) is green and scenic. The tough NW approach starts suddenly at Bassaburua (325m); it includes the minor Col d’Haltza, 782m, and two steep (14%) sections of hairpins. Short eastern descent to lake/chalet/snack bar (1000m) - a road junction with Col d’Irau,1140m, which is an even better alternative route.

Road Condition and Hazards

Good surfaces in 1998

Facilities

Chalet/snack bar located at 1000m on east side.

Col d’Erroymendi

Col d’Erroymendi, 1362m is only part of the Puerto de Larrau.

Pas de Guilhers

Pas de Guilhers, 1436m. This is only a step on the way to the Col de la Pierre St. Martin or Col de Soudet.

Col Heguichouri

Col Heguichouri, 1284m is another name for the Col d’Orgambideska.

Dennis Waterman adds: These are NOT the same cols!! From Col Bagargui the Col Heguichouri is 100-200 metres in the direction of the Col de Burdincurucheta and is 1319m high. Col Orgambideska is in the opposite direction, that is 100-200 metres towards Larrau and 1284m altitude. I know because Col Heguichouri can be found on Michelin map 342 and in 1992 there was a sign at Col Orgambideska. Check Chauvot!

Col de Houratate (HOU)

Height: 1009m. NOT 1109m, as marked on several maps.

Location: South then west from Oloron to unmarked summit.

General Comments

Very minor road, deceptively long, hard and steep climb from east side but easy from the west. In the kilometre between Houratate and Col de Bouezou, 1009m (no sign) the road rises to 1021m.

From the col a dead-end track climbs north, soon reaching Col de Bergout,1164m. ‘Killer last 500m so steep’ report intrepid tandemists in 1999. Track continues and ends at 1360m on mountainside.

Road Condition and Hazards

Surface poor in 1994 after a series of minor land-slips, but improved since.

Facilities

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Col d’Ichère (ICH)

Height: 680 or 695m

Location: South of Oloron.

General Comments

Minor road (1998) linking sleepy Gave de Lourdios and busier Gave d’Aspe valleys. Modest climb, somewhat harder from the east (which is scenic descent). Flat top section for 1 km.

Two thirds of way up east side, unreported track to right eventually forks left to gain Col de Launde, a.960m and Col de Saudarie, 1002m.

Road Condition and Hazards

Well surfaced. (2000)

Facilities

No facilities on the west side in Lourdios-Ichère; small grocery shop in Sarrance at the east side.

Col d’Ipharlaze (IPH)

Height: 328m

Location: Col d’Ipharlaze, 328m. In foothills NE of St Jean PdP, just off Santiago pilgrimage route.

General Comments

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Road Condition and Hazards

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Facilities

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Col d’Irau (IRA)

Height: 1008m

Location: For access, after Col de Burdincurutcheta, 1135m, turn right at Chalet, following undulating road all above 1000m for 12 km, and return to St. Jean PdP via Esterencuby.

General Comments

Can only be descended to by higher cols on either side - the Col de Sourzay, 1140m, and the Col d’Arthaburu, 1150m. (It is near Sommet d’Errozate, 1345m.) For touring E-W or vice versa, it is a longer but much preferred option to the Burdincurutcheta. Gentle ascent from Chalet to the marshy Col de Sourzay is wooded. Thereafter, route via Col d’Irau is very exposed and narrow in places. Subsequent hairpins (15%) to Col d’Arthaburu have superb view near the top (unless in thick mist!), and also when descending very steeply to Esterencuby.

The roughstuff guide, page 4, shows much more detail of the area to the south of here. A track reaches unnamed col at 1290m by Sommet d’Errozate, before descending to Col d’Errozate, 1076m .Route south into Spain seems likely but is not confirmed.

Road Condition and Hazards

Surfaces good (1998).

Facilities

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Issarbe/Col de la Hourcere (ISS)

Height: 1445m

Location: NW of Col de la Pierre St Martin, 1760m. On a small plateau by Pic d’Issarbe, 1559m, used for cross-country skiing.

General Comments

A minor road, challenging from Lanne in the north. Not much easier from St Engrace, ascending beyond Col de Suscousse, 1216m.

Road Condition and Hazards

Well surfaced. Difficult descent to Lanne due to several blind hairpins. (2000)

Facilities

The small ski-station at the summit is closed in summer, so there are no facilities between Senta (bar) and Lanne (bar, grocery shop).

Kakoueta (KAK)

Height: 410m

Location: West of Mauleon-Licharre, between villages of Musculdy and Pagolle.

General Comments

Lane with 15% section on north side. No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Road Condition and Hazards

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Facilities

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Col de Labays (LAB)

Height: 1351m

Location: West of the Col de Houratate.

General Comments

Only part of the Col de la Pierre St. Martin, unless making a northerly circuit from Arette via D341 and D132. Although the route is well forested, Michelin shows it as scenic.

Road Condition and Hazards

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Facilities

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Col du Landerre (LAN)

Height: 1072m

Location: East of St Jean P de P.

General Comments

Very interesting pastured route along high, broad ridge between Mendives and Tardets. Higher and quieter than the parallel Col d’Osquich, 507m. Several geographical cols, including Col d’Aphanize, 1044m, are crossed by the road up here, and are closely linked, with no significant climb between them. Landerre is the highest. Fine views both north and south for many km. Stone memorial tablet at Col de Landerre. The logical western approach via D117 is, beyond Behorleguy, 6km of solid 10% before easing dramatically above 1000m. The narrow D417 western approach is very quiet, with great views of Laurhibar valley and Burdincurutcheta. Some very steep pitches reported, with a 2km flat mid-section , passing through Ilhareko Lepoa (pass), 905m, before 20% to finish! Rejoins D117 east of Col de Landerre. However, the junction (not a col) is also 1072m. NE approach on D147 from Assurucq ascends delightful wooded gorge. Eastern approach on D117 from Tardets is through rural farmsteads, and steep to minor Col d’Arantgaitz, 832m, before Potto. A short dip and easier climbing to top follows.

Col d’Ibarburia, 996m, is on the east side of the road near Ahusquy, but seems justifiable as a claim only if ascending forestry track from Alcay (via Col Burdin Olatze, 892m) before descending road to Assurucq, or vice versa.

Road Condition and Hazards

All well surfaced in 1998 - much sheep dung higher up!

Facilities

No summit café.

Puerto (Port) de Larrau (LAR)

Note: also named Uthurzehetako Lepoua.

Height: 1585m (not 1573m)

Location: Border pass between of Tardets-Sorholus (France) and Ochagavia (Spain).

General Comments

Very quiet and superbly scenic. Col d’Erroymendi, 1362m is only part of the north side, which is very steep in places - 10% to 13%. It is 10% on average from Larrau to Erroymendi (measured by Jerry Nilson). Birds of prey seen here. Nearby Pic d’Orhy is most westerly mountain over 2000m in the Pyrenees. In 1996 it became the final Tour de France climb to be ridden by five-times race winner Miguel Indurain, who lost out heavily here.

Road Condition and Hazards

Completely rebuilt in 1993. Well graded and well surfaced (1998) on the easier Spanish side, with 100m-long tunnel near summit. Watch out for possible wind hazard on the Spanish side where it is open and downhill on both sides of the road on one stretch.

Facilities

No refreshments at summit. Nice hotel at Larrau, in France.

Lescun/L’Aberouat (LES)

Height: 1442m

Location: Road climbs from Gave d’Aspe valley.

General Comments

Not an OCD claim. Road climbs from Gave d’Aspe valley (500m) through village of Lescun (900m) into a magnificent cirque, including Pic d’Anie 2504m. Dead end at L’Aberouat hostel, with 14% stretch near top. Wide smooth road to Lescun, and a steeper but fairly surfaced lane beyond (1998). Highly recommended for the views.

Road Condition and Hazards

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Facilities

Cafes, hotels and camping at Lescun.

Col de Lie (LIE)

Height: 601m

Location: SE of Tardets-Sorholus, and convenient link to Col d’Ichere, 680m (avoiding rather tame Gorges de Lourdios).

General Comments

Minor lane, fairly short, moderate grades. Clear of woods, suggesting views. No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Road Condition and Hazards

Bumpy road with quite some potholes. On the east side from Lourdios-Ichère one has to pass two cattle grids. (2000)

Facilities

There is nothing at the summit (not even a sign) nor on the east side in Lourdios-Ichère. On the west side, Arette has a camping and a grocery shop.

La Madelaine (MAD)

Height: 795m

Location: NNE of Tardets-Sorholus.

General Comments

From near Col de Sustary, 444m, a narrow dead-end lane appears to quite steeply access summit of peak (chapel, panorama and hang gliding). No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Road Condition and Hazards

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Facilities

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Col de Napale (NAP)

Height: 593m

Location: See Col d’Osquich.

General Comments

A minor, steeper alternative to Col d’Osquich. No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Road Condition and Hazards

Rather busy with fast moving traffic. (2000)

Facilities

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Col d’Orgambideska/Heguichouri

Col d’Orgambideska (Heguichouri on Michelin), 1284m - see Col Bagargui, 1327m. Orgambideska, is only on way to Bagargui summit, 500 metres ride west. It is famous for the millions of migratory birds that pass over it between August and October.

Col d’Osquich (OSQ)

Height: 392m (507m)

Location: Between the towns of St Jean PdP and Mauleon Licharre via D918.

General Comments

Gently-graded link road. Reported scenic on descending upper east side. Rises to 507m on road, east of the true pass, where a junction south continues climbing on a track to:

Chapelle St Antoine, 705m. Dead-end route to chapel at peak, with panoramic views.

Col de Zuharry, a.700m. Track SW of Col d’Osquich, making a circular route from St Just-Ibarre. Access to Pic du Belchou, 1129m, may be possible. Not marked on Michelin.

Road Condition and Hazards

Fine (2001).

Facilities

Summit hotel (1995)

Coll. de la Piedra S. Martin (Col de la Pierre St. Martin) (PIE)

Height: 1760m

Location: SW of Oloron

General Comments

A big, but very quiet pass that crosses the border. From Isaba in Spain, it starts quite level and has a 12 km main climb. This is long, steady and very scenic. Superb summit views across barren limestone country. The north (French) side is much harder (a breath-taking descent). Ascending, one passes the unmarked Col de Labays, 1351m and Pas de Guilhers, 1436m, and the marked Col de Soudet, 1540m, with no extra effort.

Road Condition and Hazards

Variable surface on Spanish side(1999). On French side, quite a good surface (1993) though poor in top 4 km (1998). In 1992, landslips had forced re-routing via an arduous hilly deviation.

Facilities

Although many signs now forbid wild camping, there is a good site near the foot of the climb from Isaba in Spain. Refuge and camping area near Spanish customs, and refreshments at the (ugly) ski station. A few small shops on top. La Mouline, down at 470m, has a good little cafe. Plentiful camping at foot of French side.

Col des Palombieres (PLM)

Height: 337m

Location: On minor road NE of St Jean PdP.

General Comments

16% section on east side. No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Road Condition and Hazards

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Facilities

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Col de Soudet (SDT)

Height: 1540m

Location: Just north of the border and Col de la Pierre St. Martin. For details on other approaches see Issarbe, and Col de Labays.

General Comments

Highest point on E-W route, just north of the border and PIE Col de la Pierre St. Martin. (If climbing the latter it is only a step on the way, and not worth a claim.) The indistinct col itself is at a road junction. Ascent from the west side via Ste. Engrèce (ancient church), becomes hard and steep after the village, reaching interim Col de Suscousse. Wild strawberries here!

Road Condition and Hazards

First surfaced about 1985, deteriorated by 1994, but resurfaced by 1998.

Facilities

XXXX

Col de Sustary (SUS)

Height: 444m

Location: NE of Tardets-Sorholus.

General Comments

Narrow lane looks easy on map. No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

(Col de Suscousse, 1216m forms part of climb to both Col de la Pierre St. Martin, 1760m (via the Col de Soudet, 1540m) and to Issarbe, 1445m. It usefully links these climbs with the Port de Larrau, 1585m.)

Road Condition and Hazards

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Facilities

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Urzateguiak (URZ)

Height: 614m

Location: East of St Jean PdP on minor D168 between villages of Lecumberry and Hosta.

General Comments

An unnamed but apparently distinct pass at place of this name, with 15% sections each side. No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Road Condition and Hazards

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.

Facilities

No reports by Cycloclimbing OCD members.