There are ports and mountain ports. At the time of climbing them on foot with the cattle, or by bicycle, we can classify them as affordable, normal, hard and practically inhuman. The Angliru, located in full Sierra del Aramo in the council of Riosa, just 20 kilometers from Oviedo, is today world famous for its hardness in the cycling events. Since The return to Spain It arrived for the first time at its peak in 1999, the legend has gotten bigger every day. In the eighth stage of that round, the José María Jiménez from Avila made history as the first conqueror of the Angliru.
To the top of the Angliru habitually, in all Europe, it is compared with the Mortirolo, because they have very similar global numbers, with rises of 12,5 kms in length and an average slope close to 10 percent. Both are considered to be the toughest cycling summits. The Angliru, concretely, has a not very hard start and six hard final kilometers, with a section that goes out of all logic: the famous Cueña les Cabres, which exceeds the 23 percentage of unevenness.
The Angliru data
Physics data say that at an 13 percent unevenness, a climber that rolls at 12 km / h generates a power of about 315 watts, of which it uses a 93,5 percent to beat gravity and an 2,8 percent in overcoming air resistance. These figures become more unlikely in the case of the Angliru, which was named by the farmers of the area with a name that derives from the Latin angulum, plus the termination ariu (angled place). When we walk through the mountains of this port dotted with uniform peaks, the sun falls so vertical that one goes treading its own complete shadow up to the head. The somber angles, the nooks and crannies of the rocks, are essential for men and cattle to clear hot flashes before reaching the top.
Although crowning their 1570 meters it is not an easy task, from above we verify that the effort has been worthwhile. You can see beautiful landscapes of the central Asturian mountain, with the Gamonal peaks, to the north, with 1.712 meters of altitude, and Moncuevu, to the south, with 1.718 meters. It can be reached on foot from the Angliru summit until the top of the Gamonal On an excursion of less than an hour with good weather. If the day is clear, we will see from the Asturian coast to the Picos de Europa.
The Sierra del Aramo, where this mythical rise is located, offers a rural landscape barely altered that is worth knowing. The Angliru could well serve as the first excursion for this spy, since its views allow us to get a clear idea of the profiles of this mountain range and the many excursions that it can offer us.
As a myth of cycling, which constitutes a very attractive challenge for bicycle fans. In fact, hundreds of cycling enthusiasts climb the Angliru throughout the year. They do it to test themselves and measure their resistance. Climb alone or integrated into groups and cyclists. There are also those who run up. The first Saturday of October, a pedestrian race that is approaching its tenth edition, concentrates almost a thousand suffering participants.
For the most comfortable there is always the option to climb the Angliru by car. The track is paved and in good condition, but it is narrow, full of curves and with slopes not common for drivers who are not accustomed to these mountain roads. There are "nightlights" all the way, but still the feeling may be too strong for those who are not used to it.
Text: © Ramón Molleda for desdeasturias.com