There is a gentle warm up once leaving Hospental towards Realp, but after Realp there will be no flat road for a number of kilometers. The road quickly turns upwards and unrelentingly keeps ascending to the top of the pass at 2429m above sea level. The descent into Wallis is fast on a reasonable road surface. One tunnel after the Rheinquelle restaurant needs to be remembered on the descent as it is unlit and cobbled on the inside. When descending at speed it is possible to not realise that you are doing 80km/h on cobbles until it's too late.
In Ulrichen a left turn leads you up to the most difficult pass of the day. Nufenen 2478m above sea level is also the highest point of the tour. The descent into Ticino is very fast and on an old concrete slabbed road. This can be a litle unnerving for those less technically skilled on the bike. The end of the descent is a long false flat into Airolo before the climb of the Gothardpass begins.
The Gothard is a treat for diehard roadies who all want to ride the world famous Tremola cobbles at least once in their lives. Once the Gothard is conquered it's downhill all the way back to Hospental.