1902 Encyclopedia > The Alps > Cottian Alps

The Alps
(Part 8)



(B) MAIN DIVISIONS OF THE ALPS

(b) Cottian Alps


In the well-known panorama presented to an observer who takes his stand on the Superga, or some other eminence near Turin, the most distant objects are the peaks of the Maritime Alps south of Cuneo and, exactly in the opposite direction, the great mass of Monte Rosa. In the western horizon, subtended by this chord, about 120 miles in length, the eye follows the irregular curve traced out by the main peaks of the western Alps, that separate upper Italy from France. More than any other parts of the Alpine chain, this is characterized by extreme irregularity in the disposition of the mountain masses and the chief valleys. On the west the prevailing direction seems to be from south-west to north-east; while on the east side it is more nearly from west to east’ but the valleys and the ridges that enclose them are often curved or irregularly sinuous. Convenience seems to confirm immemorial usage in subdividing this region into two or more groups; but it is not easy to decide how this is to be affected. The great valley of the Dora Riparia, and the low passes connecting it with the valley of the Durance, seems to afford the most natural; division. Ancient and modern usage being alike opposed to this, it appears that the valley of the Orco in Piedmoint and that of the Arc in Savoy, with the connecting pass of the Col del Carro, may best be taken as the boundary between the northern and southern portions. The latter is distinguished as the group of the Cottian Alps, This includes a number of secondary ridges that extend from the main chain on the side of Piedmont, with a general direction from west to east; and on the French side one considerable range, stretching south-east from the neighbourhood of Mnte Viso, that dicides the Ubaye from the Guil, besides a lesser parallel ridge lying between the Guil and the head waters of the Durance.





Chief Peaks of the Cottian Alps

Monte Viso…………….….12,605 Monte Albaron………..12,014
Monte Meidassa……….….10,991 Mont Chardonnet…….12,373
Mont Albergian………….... 9,990 La Levanna……………11,516
Roche du Grand Galibier…10,637 Pointe de Sainte Anne, or
Mont Tabor………………...10,436 Pte. Des Orches…about.11,000
Roche d’ Ambin……………11,096 Roche Brune…………..10,906
Roche Melon……………….11,621 Mont Chaberton………10,258
Ciamarella………………….12,081

Chief Passes in the Cottian Alps

Col de Longet (Val Vraita to the Ubaye), footpath………………… 8,727
Col de St Veran (Val Vraita to Queyas), footpath…………………. 9,564
Col de la Traversette (Crissolo to Abriès), footpath……………….. 9,827
Col de la Croix (La Tour de Luserne to Abriès), bridle-path……... 7,611
Col de Sestrières (Pignerol to Cesanne), carriage road…………...... 6,335
Mont Genèvre (Cesanne to Briançon), carriage road………………. 6,102
Col d’Izouard (Queyras to Briançon), bridle-path………........about 6,500
Coldes Echelles de Planpi_et (Bardonnèche to Briançon), footpath..5,873
Col de la Roue (Bardonnèche to Modane), bridle-path…………….. 8,334
Col d’Etiaches (Bardonnèche to Bramans), footpath………………. 9,301
Col du Clapier (Bramans to Susa, footpath…………………………. 8,107
Mont Cenis (Susa to Lanslebourg), carriage road………………….. 6,772
Col de l’Autaret (Viù to Lanslebourg), snow………………………...10,170
Col de Colorin (Ala to Lanslebourg), glacier………………………...10,662
Col de Sèa (Groscavallo to Lanslebourg), glacier……………………10,154
Col della Crocetta (Groscavallo to Ceresole), footpath……….…….. 9,179





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