Today's Vuelta a España stage finishes on an incredible 31% climb, and these photos show just how tough it is

Alto de los Machucos will be a summit finish at the end of stage 17

One of the many steep hairpins on Alto de los Machucos

(Image credit: Google)

Most years the organisers of the Vuelta a España surprise us with some brutally tough new climb, but for 2017 they look to have outdone themselves with the Alto de los Machucos on stage 17.

Located deep in the mountainous countryside of Cantabria in the north of the country, this is nine kilometre climb could cause just as much damage as the better-known Sierra Nevada and Alto de l'Angliru which are also included in this year's route.

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Henry Robertshaw began his time at Cycling Weekly working with the tech team, writing reviews, buying guides and appearing in videos advising on how to dress for the seasons. He later moved over to the news team, where his work focused on the professional peloton as well as legislation and provision for cycling. He's since moved his career in a new direction, with a role at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.