Ballon d'Alsace

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Ballon d'Alsace
Ballon dAlsace.JPG
Highest point
Elevation1,247 m (4,091 ft)
Prominence217 m (712 ft) [citation needed]
Isolation562 km (349 mi)
Coordinates47°49′20″N 6°50′43″E / 47.82222°N 6.84528°E / 47.82222; 6.84528Coordinates: 47°49′20″N 6°50′43″E / 47.82222°N 6.84528°E / 47.82222; 6.84528
Ballon d'Alsace is located in France
Ballon d'Alsace
Ballon d'Alsace
Parent rangeVosges

The Ballon d'Alsace German: Elsässer Belchen (el. 1247 m.), sometimes also called the Alsatian Belchen to distinguish it from other mountains named "Belchen",[1][2][3] is a mountain at the border of Alsace, Lorraine, and Franche-Comté. From its top, views include the Vosges, the Rhine valley, the Black Forest, and the Alps.

A road leads over a pass near the peak at the Col du Ballon d'Alsace, 1,171 m (3,842 ft). The pass is noted as the site of the first official mountain climb in the Tour de France on 11 July 1905,[4] the first rider to the top of the climb being René Pottier and the stage being won by Hippolyte Aucouturier. Stage 9 of the 2005 Tour crossed this pass on the centenary of the original climb.

Ballon d'Alsace features Alpine and Cross Country skiing tracks.

The mountain is part of the so-called Belchen System, a group of mountains with the name "Belchen" (in German) that may have been part of a Celtic sun calendar.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Herbertson, Andrew John, A Handbook of Geography: Volume I. General Geography. The British Isles and Europe, London: T. Nelson (1912), p. 173.
  2. ^ Karfeld, Kurt, Peter; Walter Dirks and Manfred Hausmann, Germany in Colour, Karfeld Verlag, 1956, p. 16.
  3. ^ Schickele, Rene, Heart of Alsace, AA Knopf (1929), p. 164.
  4. ^ "L'HISTOIRE 1903-2008" (PDF) (in French). Archived from the original (pdf) on 5 June 2011. Retrieved 5 May 2011.

External links[edit]