Puerto de San Glorio (Potes)

Start Town Altitude Elevation Gain Length Gradient Difficulty Rating
Potes 1,609m 1,278m 26.7 km 4.8% 674 ***

Puerto de San Glorio  - Potes - Cycling Profile

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Climb Description

Puerto de San Glorio is a regular feature in the Vuelta a España. The climb is the highest in the zone around the Picos de Europa Natural Park and is an important pass in the region; not just for humans, but also for the local bear population. Don't worry though, they are very timid and there is almost no chance that you will ever come across one of them.

At the top of the climb, it is possible to turn off and continue climbing towards Mirador de Llesba - an extra 2km with some quite steep gradients. At this mirador there is an impressive statue of a brown bear.

San Glorio from Potes is the classic side of the climb. It is a long ascent that begins gently, before settling into a steady 6-7% gradient for the final 16km. If you are feeling good it is possible to get into a nice rhythm and fly up there, but on a bad day it can turn into a real struggle. The scenery here will help you to take your mind off any struggles though, particularly once you leave the villages behind and enter the beautiful open countryside.

Puerto de San Glorio is open throughout the year depending on weather. There is normally snow around from November through to April (indeed, there are controversial plans to build a ski resort near the top of the pass); in these months, whether or not you can cycle depends how recently the road has been cleared.

Puerto de San Glorio from Potes - Cantabria Cycling Climb

From the top of the climb you can descend into the Province of León

Roads & Traffic

The road is in very good condition throughout.

There is generally little traffic on the climb, but it can get quite busy at weekends and during the main summer season.

Potes - Cantabria

The climb begins from the lively town of Potes

Alternative Routes

San Glorio can also be climbed from the west, beginning from Portilla de la Reina.

Nearby Climbs



Fuente Dé


Salto de la Cabra

Collado de la Hoz

Cycling Holidays

We don't currently run any tours in this part of Cantabria. If you would be interested in customizing an itinerary to this region, please contact us and we would be happy to discuss the options.

You may also be interested in the links below to some of the holidays that we currently run nearby in Northern Spain.

Picos de Europa National Park
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Self-Guided Cycling Holiday
Length: 8 Days
Level: Difficulty Medium to Challenging
Price: from €1,490 EUR
Basque Mountains
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Self-Guided Cycling Holiday
Length: 7 Days
Level: Difficulty Easy to Medium
Price: from €1,480 EUR
Lagos de Covadonga
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Self-Guided Cycling Holiday
Length: 8 Days
Level: Difficulty Challenging-Hard
Price: from €1,490 EUR