Has anyone done the Stelvio Bike Day?

For Australian Cyclists travelling and touring OS

Has anyone done the Stelvio Bike Day?

Postby Kneedown » Thu Sep 29, 2011 4:57 pm

Has anyone been to the Stelvio Bike Day? http://naturatrafoi.com/stelviobike/english/index.php

Image

Image


This is a bit of long term planning (dreaming probably!) but I am starting to put together a family trip to Italy and want to get some cycling in as well. I have always dreamt of riding the Stelvio pass on a motorbike but given my current pursuits a cycle is more apt.

From what I can gather from the link above, the Passo Stelvio is closed to vehicles from 8am to 4pm and cyclists get to ride the pass en masse from (Prato allo Stelvio) the northern side which has 48 hairpins to the summit last weekend in August each year. From the pics it looks like there is a great variety of punters and atmosphere as well. From all accounts the Stelvio has very little motor traffic at the best of times, but being part of a cycling event sounds like a great way to tackle this ride.

Starting from Prato, the Stelvio Pass is 24,3 km long. Over this distance, you climb 1808 meters in elevation. The average gradient is 7.4%.

The plan is to stay in Bormio and use that as a base to ride the Stelvio bike day as well as the legendary Mortirolo & Gavia passes on another day.

Would appreciate hearing from anyone who has ridden the Stelvio/Mortirolo/Gavia recently about their thoughts on how best to plan and tackle the trip.

So far I have a few tips on places to stay and hire a bike. But more questions than answers really.

Cheers
Image

Bianchi Sempre Chorus 11 project completed!
Avanti Blade Sport for not so sunny days
User avatar
Kneedown
 
Posts: 206
Joined: Wed May 05, 2010 5:56 pm
Location: Perth, WA

by BNA » Thu Sep 29, 2011 5:10 pm

BNA
 

Has anyone done the Stelvio Bike Day?

Postby herzog » Thu Sep 29, 2011 5:10 pm

You might also want to check out the Sellaronda bike day.

All the major passes in the dolomites are closed to cars and the loop route is even more spectacular than stelvio.

http://www.sellarondabikeday.com/course_eng.html

http://www.flickr.com/photos/valgardena ... 54/detail/
User avatar
herzog
 
Posts: 1758
Joined: Thu Jan 29, 2009 8:50 pm

Re: Has anyone done the Stelvio Bike Day?

Postby MREJ » Thu Sep 29, 2011 7:47 pm

I stayed in Bormio in late May this year with the intention of riding Stelvio. Unfortunately, it snowed overnight and the pass was closed on the only day that I could ride it. I did Passo Gavia instead.

Gavia is a lovely climb and highly recommended. If you go from Bormio, it heads steadily upwards through the trees before opening out into wide alpine vistas. The day I did it was sunny and cool, and the previous night's snow was plop-plopping as I climbed. Most of the time that was the only noise I heard - there was very little other traffic - more bikes than anything else, a few motorbike and only a dozen or so cars. Dropping down the other side was glorious, but you do need to be careful with the "tornante" (hairpin bends) - take one of these too fast and it might be the last thing you do on a bike!

The Bormio valley and surrounding district is very attractive. Bormio itself is a skiing town and has a lot of fairly unappealing apartments and hotels. There is a good bike shop on the main road. We stayed in the old spa hotel at the northern (Stelvio) end of the valley. It's a bit more expensive but a very enjoyable experience. The baths are wonderful and very extensive, the hotel is very appealing in a 19th c spa resort kind of way, and the views back down the valley (towards and past Bormio town) are magnificent. The restaurant does a very good local cuisine menu. Even if you don't stay there, it would still be a great idea to visit the baths.

We also rode in many other parts of Italy and loved it all. There are so many good roads! Almost any hill or mountain is worth tackling, and there will often will be well-surfaced, low traffic roads which are shaded and super fun. Other highlights for us were the Lake Como area (do the ride up to Madonna del Ghisallo, but there are plenty of others), the area north of Verona by Lake Garda, and Tuscany. We had no problems with traffic at any of these locations.
2011 Genesis Equilibrium 20, 2012 Felt F75, 2013 Giant TCR Advanced SL, 2014 Wabi Lightning SE
User avatar
MREJ
 
Posts: 376
Joined: Wed Jan 13, 2010 4:58 pm

Re: Has anyone done the Stelvio Bike Day?

Postby Daccordi Rider » Fri Sep 30, 2011 10:30 am

Hi Kneedown,

I rode the Stelvio in August. We had a week at Lake Como and did a day trip across. We hired bikes and did the day trip with Lake Como Cycling, run by Pietro and Nicole http://www.bicyclinginitaly.com/index.asp . They were brilliant, dropped bikes off to us and provided great advice. For Stelvio we rode the Bormio side as we had been told the traffic is quieter and the ride just as good and that was certainly good advice. It was sensational, my favourite climb of the trip that included Alpe d Huez, Ventoux, Galibier, Col de Agnel etc.

We also had a week in the French Alps and did the Alpe d Huez to Italy trip with More than 21 Bends http://www.morethan21bends.com/ run by Phil and Helen Daniels from Bourg d Oisans. Great people and a wonderful trip, extremely good value so also highly recommended.

Hope this is helpful, let me now if I can help further.
Certified Brand Snob
Daccordi Rider
 
Posts: 601
Joined: Tue May 03, 2011 1:40 pm
Location: Adelaide

Re: Has anyone done the Stelvio Bike Day?

Postby Kneedown » Fri Sep 30, 2011 3:33 pm

Thanks for the replies guys...I will be tapping you for lots of advice in the near future. :D

MREJ
Did you hire bikes in Italy or did you carry your own across? As mentioned I am looking to hire a bike in Bormio as there is a hotel that claims to hire Pinarello's for €35/day (http://www.hotelfunivia.it/en_servizi-esclusivi-ciclisti.aspx). I have ridden a motorbike in Italy (Rome, Amalfi coast & Abruzzo) so have a fair idea what to expect in terms of road conditions.

Daccordi
Cheers for the link to Como Cycling, it will be good to have options regarding bike hire. I take it you rode the Stelvio on a regular day. Will be intersting to see how busy Bormio gets in terms of accommodation close to the Stelvio Bike Day. Did you stay in Bormio at all?
Image

Bianchi Sempre Chorus 11 project completed!
Avanti Blade Sport for not so sunny days
User avatar
Kneedown
 
Posts: 206
Joined: Wed May 05, 2010 5:56 pm
Location: Perth, WA

Re: Has anyone done the Stelvio Bike Day?

Postby Daccordi Rider » Fri Sep 30, 2011 6:03 pm

We stayed at Menaggio on Lake Como and just did a day trip to Stelvio. Lots of great cycling around the lake including the famous Ghisallo climb. That hire price is about right, expect to pay 35-40 per day for a bike. We rode up in the height of the season and the traffic was no problem at all from the Bormio side. There was certainly more on the other side including a few buses but really nothing that would worry you. All the traffic expects cyclists and are very courteous, as you will find with all riding over there.
Certified Brand Snob
Daccordi Rider
 
Posts: 601
Joined: Tue May 03, 2011 1:40 pm
Location: Adelaide

Has anyone done the Stelvio Bike Day?

Postby MREJ » Fri Sep 30, 2011 7:50 pm

Hi kneedown

We took bikes with us. I was glad we did. It was more economical as we were able to get them on the plane as part of our luggage limit, and it's nice to have your own bike. Also, we had a car which fitted them in the boot, so travelling around with them was quite manageable. I rode about 12 of 22 days. If I was going to move around a lot on public transport, or only wanted to do a few rides, I'd probably hire bikes.

Happy to answer any other questions.

Marcus
2011 Genesis Equilibrium 20, 2012 Felt F75, 2013 Giant TCR Advanced SL, 2014 Wabi Lightning SE
User avatar
MREJ
 
Posts: 376
Joined: Wed Jan 13, 2010 4:58 pm


Return to Touring Overseas

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users


PM Issues
Known Bug - error message displayed when sending PM's caused by tapatalk. Read more


Popular Bike Shops
Wiggle Wiggle UK
Ground Effect Ground Effect NZ
Ebay Ebay AU
Chain Reaction Cycles CRC UK

“Bicycles BNA Twitter
“Bicycles BNA Facebook
“Google+ BNA Google+
“Bicycles BNA Newsletter

> FREE BNA Stickers
> BNA Cycling Kit