Col de Clapier

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Col de Clapier
Col de Clapier (by Edward Boenig) 01.jpg
Col de Clapier, Turin visible at upper left
Elevation2,491 m (8,173 ft)
LocationFranceItaly border
Coordinates45°10′3″N 6°55′22″E / 45.16750°N 6.92278°E / 45.16750; 6.92278Coordinates: 45°10′3″N 6°55′22″E / 45.16750°N 6.92278°E / 45.16750; 6.92278
Colle de Clapier is located in Alps
Colle de Clapier
Colle de Clapier
Location of Colle de Clapier in the Alps.
Col de Clapier, descent to Susa

Col de Clapier (French Col Clapier, Italian Colle Clapier) is a 2,491-metre-high (8,173 ft) mountain pass over the mountain massif Mont Cenis in the Cottian Alps and Graian Alps between Savoy in France and Piemont in Italy. The bridle path goes from Bramans (1220 m) to Susa (503 m). There is no firm road.


The Col de Clapier is considered a possible route for Hannibal's famous passage through the Alps on his journey from the Rhone (in French, Rhône) river valley to Italy.[1]

From 2004-2008, Patrick Hunt, a scholar from Stanford University (USA), has led numerous archaeological expeditions through the Col de Clapier to research the possibility and likelihood of Hannibal using this pass to traverse the Alps with his army. Hunt's research has involved topographical surveys, soil and rock sampling, exploration of the Col de Clapier's various modern and historic routes, and comparisons of Polybius' and Livy's accounts of Hannibal's passage to the regional and local geography. See Hannibal in the Alps: Stanford Alpine Archaeology Project 1994-2006.

In 1959, it was the planned route of the British Alpine Hannibal Expedition, however, due to rockfall, the expedition backtracked and took their elephant into Susa via the Col du Mont Cenis.[2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Hannibal's War: A Military History of the Second Punic War, p. 46, John Francis Lazenby University of Oklahoma Press, 1998
  2. ^ David Lees; Pierre Boulat (August 17, 1959). "Alpine Elephant without Hannibal". Life. Retrieved 17 October 2010.

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