La Boniagua - Vielha (Catalonia)
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La Bonaigua is very gentle on the lower slopes and doesn't get a lot steeper higher up. There are no hidden difficulties here.
Roads & TrafficThe road surface is generally in good condition. Although there some parts on the lower slopes where it has been relaid in patches, which has made the road slightly bumpy.
This is a busy road for the first half of the climb until Baqueria; however, there is a wide hard shoulder which acts like a cycle lane keeping you out of the traffic. After Baqueria the hard shoulder disappears and, although the traffic does reduce considerably, it is still something of a nuissance, particularly on weekends. We would not recommend avoiding this climb solely because of the traffic, but it does demand extra care and attention.
La Bonaigua is the highest road pass in Catalonia and is one of the most celebrated cycling climbs in the region. It has been used in both the Tour de France and the Vuelta a España and is also one of the gateways into the French Pyrenees.
The climb is picturesque and has a nice variety of scenery, but is not what you would call spectacular. In particular, the high volume of traffic on the lower slopes demands most of your attention, making it difficult to appreciate the fleeting views.
If you are in the area, then La Bonaigua is a nice climb to do if you can avoid the busiest periods (weekends & holidays) - but it is not a mountain that is worth travelling a long distance specifically to climb it.
In theory the Bonaigua is open throughout the year, as the road is routinely cleared of snow in the winter (partly to enable access to the ski resort near the summit). However, short term closures are possible depending on the amount of snowfall from December to April.
Other sidesLa Bonaigua can also be climbed from the east, starting in Esterri d'Aneu.
Nearby ClimbsPla de Beret
Col du Portillon
Col de Peyresourde
Port de Bales