Cycling through Italian mountain tunnels

Cycle-touring, Expeditions, Adventures, Major cycle routes NOT LeJoG (see other special board)
kawa9999
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Re: Cycling through Italian mountain tunnels

Postby kawa9999 » 8 Mar 2012, 8:41am

Hi Andy,
I am currently working in germany, but I am heading back to Montebelluna almost every month, so I will let you know If I am there those days.
Regarding the "Ciclabile del sile": it is not really doable with racing bikes, as there are off road pieces: http://www.magicoveneto.it/Treviso/Sile/Sile.htm
Montebelluna itself is not that bad, but if you want to eat good with small money, there are very good places if you head either towards the Montello (which is called the gym of cyclist) or even nicer if you head towards asolo (which indeed is not far away from Cornuda). There is it very nice scenery.
Feltre to Montebelluna. Indeed, unless you want to climb the Monte Grappa (which would definitely be a nice thing, but quite hard) there is no much alternative. I also rode that couple of times, if you ride quite fast is not that bad. I would the suggest that in Onigo you get out of the ss348. There is an almost parallel street, which has much less traffic.
SS13?? DO NOT DO IT. That is a heavy traffic road. No fun.
Well indeed it depends. I can check if I find a nicer route, but before a couple of questions.
Are you looking for the shortest way A to B or is it ok to have a couple of more KM? Do you have a GPS? I can check if there are alternative smaller roads, but without GPS would be for you almost impossible to follow it.
I have also some Friends in the venice area, I will ask them regarding accomodation.
Which kind of accomodation are you looking for? Cheap? Expensive?
Indeed in Venice city is everything quite expensive, it is better to sleep in Mestre, and from there Venice is not far away.
regards
manuel

RichardPH
Posts: 128
Joined: 12 Aug 2011, 4:34pm

Re: Cycling through Italian mountain tunnels

Postby RichardPH » 8 Mar 2012, 6:15pm

kawa9999 wrote:Hi Andy,
I am currently working in germany, but I am heading back to Montebelluna almost every month, so I will let you know If I am there those days.
Regarding the "Ciclabile del sile": it is not really doable with racing bikes, as there are off road pieces: http://www.magicoveneto.it/Treviso/Sile/Sile.htm
Montebelluna itself is not that bad, but if you want to eat good with small money, there are very good places if you head either towards the Montello (which is called the gym of cyclist) or even nicer if you head towards asolo (which indeed is not far away from Cornuda). There is it very nice scenery.
Feltre to Montebelluna. Indeed, unless you want to climb the Monte Grappa (which would definitely be a nice thing, but quite hard) there is no much alternative. I also rode that couple of times, if you ride quite fast is not that bad. I would the suggest that in Onigo you get out of the ss348. There is an almost parallel street, which has much less traffic.
SS13?? DO NOT DO IT. That is a heavy traffic road. No fun.
Well indeed it depends. I can check if I find a nicer route, but before a couple of questions.
Are you looking for the shortest way A to B or is it ok to have a couple of more KM? Do you have a GPS? I can check if there are alternative smaller roads, but without GPS would be for you almost impossible to follow it.
I have also some Friends in the venice area, I will ask them regarding accomodation.
Which kind of accomodation are you looking for? Cheap? Expensive?
Indeed in Venice city is everything quite expensive, it is better to sleep in Mestre, and from there Venice is not far away.
regards
manuel


Hi Andy / Manuel, I too plan to ride to Venice using the Umbrail, Stelvio later this summer but from Bormio we cross the Gavia, then head south from Ponte di Legno to Breno, then over the Croci Domini pass to lago d'Idro then via the SS237 to Salo on the southwest corner of lake Garda. From there we will cross the lake on the ferry and use quiet roads skirting north of the centre of Verona and through the hills beyond Lonigo, then north of Padua to Venice, staying on the mainland as advised.

Any comments on my plans vs. those proposed by Andy?

I've driven quite a few of the roads around Bormio, but that was 30 years ago, the Gavia now has a tarmac surface I understand from mates who rode it last year. Surprised that the Umbrail has lost its tarmac, I don't remember it a loose surfaced back then

kawa9999
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Joined: 27 Feb 2012, 7:51am
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Re: Cycling through Italian mountain tunnels

Postby kawa9999 » 9 Mar 2012, 8:13am

Hi Richard,

I cannot help you much because I have not really cycled much of that area. Padua is worth a visit but only if you are really on Arts, History and those kind of things. The center is not that bad, but getting there can be difficult, and the suburbs are not so nice. Also Padua to venice do not expect too much, it is unfortunately a flat area with quite a lot of industrial areas.
Are you passing north or south of Vicenza? South it is quite flat. All the way to venice is just a big flat, without big scenery except countryside. North of Vicenza is definitely hiller, and the more north you pass the more demanding it can be. Vicenza itself is also not a bad city.

I will ask on www.bdc-forum.it if someone can provide more informations on the two plans and particularly on the Lombarida Area.
regards
manuel

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stephenjubb
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Location: East Yorkshire

Re: Cycling through Italian mountain tunnels

Postby stephenjubb » 9 Mar 2012, 11:34am

having driven extensively on holiday in italy the standard of Italian drivers is poor, some suicidal.

Don't know how tolerant of cyclists they are, but to me combining the above with a long dark tunnel is like asking for which coffin I should book.

Sorry to sound pessimistic but if possible I would try and avoid.

see here as 1 example

http://www.titanicawards.com/2010/06/30 ... uts-video/

RichardPH
Posts: 128
Joined: 12 Aug 2011, 4:34pm

Re: Cycling through Italian mountain tunnels

Postby RichardPH » 9 Mar 2012, 1:40pm

kawa9999 wrote:Hi Richard,

I cannot help you much because I have not really cycled much of that area. Padua is worth a visit but only if you are really on Arts, History and those kind of things. The center is not that bad, but getting there can be difficult, and the suburbs are not so nice. Also Padua to venice do not expect too much, it is unfortunately a flat area with quite a lot of industrial areas.
Are you passing north or south of Vicenza? South it is quite flat. All the way to venice is just a big flat, without big scenery except countryside. North of Vicenza is definitely hiller, and the more north you pass the more demanding it can be. Vicenza itself is also not a bad city.

I will ask on http://www.bdc-forum.it if someone can provide more informations on the two plans and particularly on the Lombarida Area.
regards
manuel


Thanks Manuel, had planned to stay a night south of Vicenza, but since you recommend the city, it might actually be easier to find a bed there, probably a more attractive option, decisions...

nirakaro
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Joined: 22 Dec 2007, 2:01am

Re: Cycling through Italian mountain tunnels

Postby nirakaro » 9 Mar 2012, 7:31pm

Funny how experiences differ: I found, driving in Italy, that apart from getting tailgated on the autostrada, Italian drivers were more considerate, and less aggressive, than British. More, er, flamboyant maybe.
On a bike, I found that, like the French, they understand and respect cyclists. The worst thing was truck drivers who like to warn you of their presence with a friendly blast of the air horn six feet behind your ear.
The style of driving may be different, but I feel safer cycling in Naples than in London.

Andy61
Posts: 21
Joined: 25 Feb 2012, 10:40am

Re: Cycling through Italian mountain tunnels

Postby Andy61 » 13 Mar 2012, 6:44pm

Thanks for all the postings, which have some good information. I have looked into the suggestions made by Manuel on avoiding some of the busy roads, SS348 after Onigo.I have re plotted that part of our route to avoid the SS348 from Onigo as far as Treviso by taking what look like smaller roads that run alomost parallel. We currently have the SS13 plotted from Treviso to Venice, but I will change that based on Manuel's advice. I am thinking of something like passing through Paese, Quinto di Treviso, Zero Branco, Martellago and then towards Venice. We will most likely stay outside Venice and travel in for the evening without bicycles. There are currently 28 riders plus 2 or 3 support people (van and a motorcycle outrider). We will be looking for relatively inexpensive (cheap) accommodation, any suggestions would be welcome. Something within easy reach of transport into Venice and also not too far from Marco Polo airport, Mestre as you suggest Manuel looks to be convenient for both.
We will be using GPS, so finding small roads will not be a problem, it's just a case of following the line onthe screen (and making sure the batteries are charged each day!).
Below are links to our last four days of riding, which takes us through the mountains and on to Venice. Each day is about 150km, which will probably be enough for mountain riding, so we are not really looking to add too much distance to these. On day 7 we do have an alternative planned which goes around the Umbrail and Stelvio Passes if anyone in the group decides it might be too much for them, or if the weather turns bad.
Day 6: http://www.bikeroutetoaster.com/Course. ... rse=350266
Day 7: http://www.bikeroutetoaster.com/Course. ... rse=350274
Day 8: http://www.bikeroutetoaster.com/Course. ... rse=350270
Day 9: http://www.bikeroutetoaster.com/Course. ... rse=350271

Day 9 has been modified as I have outlined above, I tried to attach a .gpx file but that file extension was not permitted. I couldn't get the file attached by changing the extension either. I will try some other way later.

Any comments or advice on any of these days would be welcome.

I reply to Richard's posting, we looked at going via Lake Garda but it would probably have added an extra day, which we wanted to avoid. We will have cycled around Lake Constance on our day 6 so we will have to be happy with that. If you are going before September, we would be interested in your comments on the Umbrail and Stelvio Passes when you get back.

Andy61
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Joined: 25 Feb 2012, 10:40am

Re: Cycling through Italian mountain tunnels

Postby Andy61 » 14 Mar 2012, 6:35pm

That should have been "In reply to Richard's posting . . ."

RichardPH
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Joined: 12 Aug 2011, 4:34pm

Re: Cycling through Italian mountain tunnels

Postby RichardPH » 14 Mar 2012, 8:25pm

Andy61 wrote:Thanks for all the postings, which have some good information. I have looked into the suggestions made by Manuel on avoiding some of the busy roads, SS348 after Onigo.I have re plotted that part of our route to avoid the SS348 from Onigo as far as Treviso by taking what look like smaller roads that run alomost parallel. We currently have the SS13 plotted from Treviso to Venice, but I will change that based on Manuel's advice. I am thinking of something like passing through Paese, Quinto di Treviso, Zero Branco, Martellago and then towards Venice. We will most likely stay outside Venice and travel in for the evening without bicycles. There are currently 28 riders plus 2 or 3 support people (van and a motorcycle outrider). We will be looking for relatively inexpensive (cheap) accommodation, any suggestions would be welcome. Something within easy reach of transport into Venice and also not too far from Marco Polo airport, Mestre as you suggest Manuel looks to be convenient for both.
We will be using GPS, so finding small roads will not be a problem, it's just a case of following the line onthe screen (and making sure the batteries are charged each day!).
Below are links to our last four days of riding, which takes us through the mountains and on to Venice. Each day is about 150km, which will probably be enough for mountain riding, so we are not really looking to add too much distance to these. On day 7 we do have an alternative planned which goes around the Umbrail and Stelvio Passes if anyone in the group decides it might be too much for them, or if the weather turns bad.
Day 6: http://www.bikeroutetoaster.com/Course. ... rse=350266
Day 7: http://www.bikeroutetoaster.com/Course. ... rse=350274
Day 8: http://www.bikeroutetoaster.com/Course. ... rse=350270
Day 9: http://www.bikeroutetoaster.com/Course. ... rse=350271

Day 9 has been modified as I have outlined above, I tried to attach a .gpx file but that file extension was not permitted. I couldn't get the file attached by changing the extension either. I will try some other way later.

Any comments or advice on any of these days would be welcome.

I reply to Richard's posting, we looked at going via Lake Garda but it would probably have added an extra day, which we wanted to avoid. We will have cycled around Lake Constance on our day 6 so we will have to be happy with that. If you are going before September, we would be interested in your comments on the Umbrail and Stelvio Passes when you get back.


Hi Andy, I may be out there in July doing the Stelvio, Umbrail and Gavia, if so I'll report back. Your route up until the Umbrail is remarkably similar to ours, I see you're doing the tunnel from Klosters to Susch, presume bikes are allowed on the train, we will be doing the Fluela pass route from Davos.

28 is quite a large group to be accommodating en-route, are you planning on camping?

Andy61
Posts: 21
Joined: 25 Feb 2012, 10:40am

Re: Cycling through Italian mountain tunnels

Postby Andy61 » 15 Mar 2012, 10:12pm

Here is the link for the modified day 9 that I mentioned above
http://www.bikeroutetoaster.com/Course. ... rse=363810
Richard, It would be good to get your report back on the Stelvio Pass if you are doing it in July. We have investigated the tunnel from Klosters and it is OK for bikes to be loaded. There are trians every 30 minutes for vehicles and every hour for foot passengers. I can't remember the price, but it wasn't expensive. Our group has gradually grown in numbers. We are about to start the task of finding inexpensive (hopefully) hotels or hostels, we don't plan to camp.

Peter Bedingfield
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Joined: 20 Apr 2010, 10:38pm

Re: Cycling through Italian mountain tunnels

Postby Peter Bedingfield » 17 Mar 2012, 7:54pm

We are planning a similar trip - Little Venice (London) to Large Venice (Italy). Can you offer any advice on routes?
Peter Bedingfield

dawkinsth
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Joined: 19 Mar 2012, 8:11am

Re: Cycling through Italian mountain tunnels

Postby dawkinsth » 19 Mar 2012, 8:20am

Hi Andy - I've been reading this with some interest as I've been searching for more info on the ride. Are you able to tell me whether or not it's too late to join as a rider? I've done the UK rides from Winchester for the past couple of years but have never had the time to do the continental rides.
Thanks, Tim.

dawkinsth
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Joined: 19 Mar 2012, 8:11am

Re: Cycling through Italian mountain tunnels

Postby dawkinsth » 19 Mar 2012, 12:22pm

.....no worries, I've managed to get hold of someone.

Andy61
Posts: 21
Joined: 25 Feb 2012, 10:40am

Re: Cycling through Italian mountain tunnels

Postby Andy61 » 20 Mar 2012, 8:04pm

Hi Peter,
I am finally getting round to replying to your posting. In the postings above I've included links to BikeRouteToaster tracks for our routes for days 6 to 9. In fact two for day 9 after I modified it slightly to avoid some of what Manuel said are busy roads. Below are the links to the first five days, which may be of some interest to you. I presume that from London you will cross the Channel from Dover to Calais. Although we cross from Portsmouth to Le Harve we head more or less east to start with, so you should be able to intersect our route at some point if you think it is of ay interest.
Day 1 http://www.bikeroutetoaster.com/Course. ... rse=350259
Day 2 http://www.bikeroutetoaster.com/Course. ... rse=350260
Day 3 http://www.bikeroutetoaster.com/Course. ... rse=350262
Day 4 http://www.bikeroutetoaster.com/Course. ... rse=350263
Day 5 http://www.bikeroutetoaster.com/Course. ... rse=350264

One of the themes we were trying to achieve with the route was to cycle through as many countries as possible en-route, we made it to 9, including England. The route is not yet fully optimised for using smaller/quieter roads so we expect to do some tweaking in various places before finalising it.
I hope this is some help.
Andy

RichardPH
Posts: 128
Joined: 12 Aug 2011, 4:34pm

Re: Cycling through Italian mountain tunnels

Postby RichardPH » 21 Mar 2012, 11:57pm

hi Andy, purely as a matter of interest, how many mpd are you planning to average :shock: ... have you told the others taking part :wink: ?

cheers, Richard