Mortirolo. Yes THE Mortirolo! We love Mortirolo, and, contrary to many of its “sans scenery” critics, we beg to differ! At #5 on the Top Italian Climb List, it is a stout climb and serious challenge. There is a reason this climb has been one of the most frequently visited (see chart, below) by the Giro d’Italia over the years. Yes, the distant views are often blocked by the thickly wooded forests bordering the road as we ascend, but to the interested and trained eye, there is much to behold.
Don’t be shy - the Mighty Mortirolo Awaits . . . if you dare!
Statistically, this climb does not disappoint - at 7.1 miles/11.4 kilometers, and 4,173’/1,272m gained at 11.8%, this is clearly a challenge and worthy of an Italian Road Bike Climb Top 10 ranking.
Math Quiz: And . . . . how many switchbacks on Mortirolo?
O.k. I am a lawyer, not a mathematician - there’s your fair warning! According to the road signs, verified by our count as we looked up (briefly) from the pavement in front of us on this brute, there are 33 switchback/hairpins up the Mighty Mortirolo. We LOVE switchbacks, and the Italian Alps are perhaps the greatest venue for switches in the world and Mortirolo is one of its greatest ambassadors. We took the time to photograph every switchback and sign along the way. Our slideshow is located at the bottom of this climb page - enjoy!
The Marco Pantani memorial is located at tornante/switchback 11 and the cycling news report of its inauguration is:
“The inauguration of a new Marco Pantani memorial on the ascent of the Mortirolo mountain, which will this year be the final climb of the 20th stage of the Giro d'Italia, will take place on Tuesday, May 2. The association of Italian cyclists ACCPI, together with manufacturer Bianchi, brought about the memorial in honour of the 'Pirate', who died on February 14, 2004, in Rimini. The monument is located in Piaz de l’Acqua, some eight kilometres off the mountaintop.”
Approximately the 5 mile / 8km mark
Steepest Gradients by Distance