Col du Cucheron and Col de Porte

Col du Cucheron

Date: 10th July 2023

Climb: Col du Cucheron
Ride No. 73
Grade: 4/10

Climb: Col de Porte
Ride No. 74
Grade: 4/10

Location: St. Pierre-d’Entremont

Climb: Col du Cucheron
Segment ID:
My Time: 0:40:20

Climb: Col de porte
Segment ID:
My Time: 0:44:17





Fun and games

Today was camp moving day and the opportunity to practise my favourite game, “Packing Tetris”.
It always looks impossible to pack everything into the small Toyota Yaris, but somehow it happens.

After packing Mary Poppins’ bag, it was time to tidy up two wayward climbs, the Col du Cucheron, and the Col de Porte.
Both climbs were relatively short and conveniently, the Col du Cucheron descent leads directly to the Col de Porte start.


Houston, we have a problem, abort!

From the village of Saint-Pierre-d’Entroment the segment start was only a short distance down the road.

Turning up the start of the climb for a 7-8% leg warmer and about 1Km in, I suddenly realised that I had not started my Garmin watch.

I use both my watch and bike Garmin to record my rides as a ‘belt and braces’ precaution.

With the worrying and niggling traits of old age, I turned around and back to the start.


Under starters orders

Full systems check completed and a return to the 7-8% opener.

It was a nasty start on a hot day, but the gradient gently eased into a more sociable 5%.

Everything was ticking away splendidly, but it couldn’t last, and it didn’t.


Roadworks and traffic lights.

The race was on. Not exactly what I wanted, but preferable to a 120 second wait.

I was through on the change but just but for safety from oncoming racing drivers I ducked into safety inside the cones.

Now to settle down, or not?

Normal service and a carefree cadence resumed; all was well.

A few Km’s further, the road descended for 0.5Km.

This is a double-edged sword. It’s good to get some speed, but it can mean the dreaded ‘Café stop legs’ when it’s time to climb your way back up.

As envisaged, the joy of speeding brings a 9% in revenge. “Oh legs, get over it.”

I reached the top and found the all-important summit post, and that was about it.

It was now time to descend to La Diat for the joy of the Col de Porte.

It’s rare I groan about descending 10-11% but as with the dip on the Col du Cucheron, I knew I had to come back up.

The climb starts off at 6-7% which wakes up the legs after doing very little on the descent, and then the thick forest appeared.

Road workers shouting “Allez, Allez, Allez!” raised my spirits as I tried to respond.

A  brief silence

As the forest closed in, so did the silence, but this was only briefly.

Up the road, but out of sight, I could hear rattling and shouting.

As I rounded a bend, a procession of roller skiers confronted me.

I know that snow can be in short supply now, but who on earth thought this a good thing to do?

That seems harder than what I am doing.

After a merry exchange of banter, I pressed on to the summit.


The peace and tranquillity of the mountain was once again disrupted as I reached the summit.

This time it was a highly regimented formation of motorcyclists descending.

As they sat on their high-powered armchairs, I couldn’t help but notice their serious Robocop expressions. There was a definite pecking order and I’ll let guess the nationality.

At the top was an Auberge that gave the impression that it was open because it was too much effort to turn the sign to say Ferme, but the coffee was good.

So, it was back down, get some photos and enjoy hauling myself up the 10-11% I had gleefully descended.

Now to drive off for my long overdue return to the municipal campsite at Saint Jean de Maurienne, a hub for some great climbing.