Passo dello Stelvio compared to others...

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Passo dello Stelvio compared to others...

Postby toolonglegs » Sun Jul 07, 2013 5:42 am

Just wondering how hard the Passo dello Stelvio is compared to climbs like the Galibier, Ventoux or Tourmalet ?.
Basically I am wondering if I should put more than a 34 / 28 combo on... I won't be racing, more than likely I will be grinding up while looking after people, had no issues with the other climbs on a compact even though I am no light weight.
Who's done it?.
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by BNA » Sun Jul 07, 2013 10:53 pm

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Re: Passo dello Stelvio compared to others...

Postby GregLR » Sun Jul 07, 2013 10:53 pm

While cycletouring in Italy in June 2006 I rode the Stelvio on a road touring bike (but without panniers that day) that has a triple crankset with a low of 30/27 (= 30"), which is a little lower than your proposed low of 34/28 (=32.8"). I can't remember if I used the lowest gear, but probably did.

I can't comment on the comparability of the Stelvio with the other iconic European climbs you mention. But FWIW I'm 58, weigh around 75kg and the gearing I used on the Stelvio is the same (or similar) to that I use on hilly/mountainous 200km day rides at the Audax Alpine Classic ( http://www.cyclingprofiles.com.au/HTM/A ... AAC200.htm ) and Fitz's Challenge ( http://www.cyclingprofiles.com.au/HTM/R ... lassic.htm ).

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Re: Passo dello Stelvio compared to others...

Postby toolonglegs » Sun Jul 07, 2013 11:02 pm

Cheers Greg, i am tempted to put a MTB cassette on (34) so I can just cruise it as I will be looking after people... I would definitely use the 28 ... Maybe chucking on a 30 would be enough.
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Re: Passo dello Stelvio compared to others...

Postby dalai47 » Mon Jul 08, 2013 5:01 pm

I rode the Stelvio September 2012 (Bormio side to summit, back down Passo Umbrail and descending into Switzerland looping around to also climb from Prato allo Stelvio) and rode the French climbs you mention in 2011.

Hard to say how they compare as the French trip I was on my own bike 53/39-13/29 and rode numerous repeats of Mt Donna Buang and other hills in preparation. The Bormio side trip during last years holiday was a last minute decision and I didn't hit the hills once! :roll: Rode in Italy on a Coppi rental with compact and possibly 30 on the back (it was huge!), which I was thankful for on the second day riding the Mortirolo - Gavia loop!

The Stelvio (assuming you will be taking punters up the more famous 48 tornante Prato allo Stelvio side) is not as steep as the middle third of Bedoin ascent on Ventoux, but the top two thirds of the Stelvio just continues forever! And when you get to the Refugio with the top in sight it is still 7km to go!

http://climbinglama.blogspot.com.au/201 ... -18th.html

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If you were riding yourself, then 34/28 would be easily more than sufficient. As you have to ride with customers, if they are going slower your cadence will be pretty low unless you go for something bigger?
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Re: Passo dello Stelvio compared to others...

Postby toolonglegs » Mon Jul 08, 2013 7:33 pm

Looks good 8) ... I may end up driving the van that day, won't know till we get there. Fingers crossed.
If I was on my own I wouldn't be too worried, but sometimes I have to stop and wait numerous times and getting going can be rather tough... trying to make my life easy. Plus I have to carry spare bidons, food, first aid kit, arm and leg warmers and vest ( plus mine! :shock: )... makes my bike a good 10kgs or more!.
Anyway grabbed a 11-32 cassette this morning... can use it on my CX bike in winter so not a big expense ( only get about 10 hours out of the drive chain on my CX rig ).
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Re: Passo dello Stelvio compared to others...

Postby dalai47 » Mon Jul 08, 2013 8:40 pm

Given all the above, larger cassette sounds the best option.

Very jealous. Have a great trip! :D
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