|Height||Climbing height - length|
||1915m - 33.2 km (Bruck/Krössenbach); 242m (Fuscher Lacke)
1672m - 36.8 km (Winklern); 1672m - 34.9 km (Winklern via Apriach)
|4 (5) South; 4-5 (5) North||5 (5)|
|How to get there||
This fantastic and beautiful road was built in the 1930s with the expressed purpose of being a beautiful tourist road and they indeed succeded in this. The approach from the south starts at Winklern (882m) not far from Lienz and the Lienzer Dolomiten. The real climbing only starts at Pockhorn (1113m), from where it is somewhat steep. It passes by the idyllic Heiligenblut (1291m) village. Soon thereafter at Guttal (1859m), which you descend to via Kasereck (1909m), a scenic cul-de-sac road (8.5 km) goes to Franz-Josephs-Höhe (2365m) (or 2413m). The main road continues up to the pass, which is at a tunnel.
From the north you start in the area of Zell am See at Bruck and Krössenbach (755m). First after Fusch (811m) the real climb begins. It is quite steep on this side and it is one of the hardest passes in the Alps with this height. The scenery is splendid all the time and the road is fine and wide. At Fuscher-Törl (2402m) a cobbledstoned cul-de-sac road (1.8 km) goes to Edelweißspitze (2572m) from where the views should be the best in the area. From the Fuscher-Törl 2 (viewpoint) (2428m) the road runs around the Törlkopf and descends to Fuscher Lacke (2262m) before it starts climbing again first through the short Mittertörl tunnel (only a pass above (2375m) on an ancient path) and then up to the Hochtor tunnel.
|Other comments||The Hochtor tunnel is lit, but watch out for ice. The steepest part of the climb is from the toll station on the north side and up to Fuscher-Törl. No toll for cyclists (which is also true for the Franz Josephs strasse). On the south side you could also take the alternative road via Apriach. There is water to be found one the way to the pass on both sides. There are probably a lot of cars (and cyclists) on fine days on this road and maybe you should try and avoid the most obviously busy hours. There are a cafés and restaurants at Fusch as well as cafés around the pass heights.
[AT-SA-2504, BIG 625]