|Really? These are crazy people.|
Oh yeah... I forgot the historical connection.
Hannibal. Elephants. 218 BC. 25,000 soldiers marching from Barca to Roma.
If you do any searches with Alps, mountain passes, Oulx (etc) you'll find that the southern route is one of those that's proposed as the way Hannibal got his elephants from Spain to Italy. It's a heck of a walk for an army, especially one that's got 37 elephants. (That's the number he ended up with. We don't know how many he started with.)
And while historians debate exactly which mountain pass they hiked through (with elephants!), it had to be one of these routes. (Another version of the march from Barcelona to Rome.)
All the other passes are worse!