Classic Passes of the Alpes Vaudoises




Start/Finish:  Aigle

Country:  Switzerland

Route:  Loop (anti clockwise)

CLIMB: Col de la Croix (1778m)

                  Col du Pillon (1546m)

                  Col des Mosses (1445m)

Col de la Croix, Col du Pillon and Col des Mosses

Starting in Aigle, home of the International Cycling Union (UCI), this loop takes you over 3 passes in the French speaking part of Switzerland.

The first few kilometres in the Rhone valley are an opportunity to warm up before the ascent to the Col de la Croix (alt. 1,778m). Featuring a difference in altitude in excess of 1,300m over a distance of 23km, this pass is one of the longest and most arduous Switzerland has to offer.

During the climb, you pass through the village of Villars-sur-Ollon, a well known stage finish of the Tour de Romandie and the Tour de Suisse, the two Swiss legs of the UCI WorldTour.

Following a descent of 8km, you reach the village of Les Diablerets and start the ascent to the Col du Pillon (alt. 1,546m). The summit marks the linguistic border with Swiss-German-speaking Switzerland, and you soon find yourself in the famous resort of Gstaad. A few kilometres further on and you re-enter French-speaking Switzerland.

At Château d’Oex, head left for the Col des Mosses, featured in the 2016 Tour de France. The ascent is interspersed with level sections and passes through the village of l’Etivaz, famous for its cheese of the same name. The pass at alt. 1,445m precedes the long final descent back to Aigle. Finish with a visit to the UCI headquarters to admire their magnificent velodrome.

You can easily start this tour in Villars, Les Diablerets, Gstaad or Château d’Oex.

Alain lives in the Alpes vaudoises. He designed a 4 day tour on his home ground that features the classic passes and lesser known, quiet roads. Perfect for a long week end of riding and relaxing in the mountains - information and booking here.



Stats and design by myCols

Average grade    6.1 %
Length                    20.1 km
Altitude start      550 m
Altitude top         1776 m
Ascent                   1226 m
Maximum             10 %


Average grade    8.2 %
Length                    4.6 km
Altitude start      1172 m
Altitude top         1546 m
Ascent                   374 m
Maximum             10 %


Average grade    3.8 %
Length                    12.4 km
Altitude start      980 m
Altitude top         1445 m
Ascent                   465 m
Maximum             7 %


Stop at the dairy in l’Etivaz to taste the local speciality. The best energy-boosting foods are natural!


Approaching the top of the Col de la Croix


The cable car to Glacier 3000 on the Col du Pillon


Starting the third pass: Col des Mosses, featured in the 2016 Tour de France


Dramatic background near the top of Col de la Croix


Like a fairytale: the Aigle castle


This loop is part of the “Top Road Cycling Routes” created by Alain for the Switzerland Tourism website.

You can see Alain ride his home roads of the Alpes vaudoises with Mike Cotty in this video by The Col Collective.

Interested in a guided trip?

Let us connect you to our network of guide services and tour operators. For more information about booking, contact: 


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Comments 2

  1. Hi I’m looking to organise a trip to Andermatt and base there of 5 or 6 nights with guided road bike tours in the area for approx. 10 people, Is that something you do?


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