Giro d’Italia

Whenever the Treasury Secretary gives the green light for another trip into the high mountains, I think ‘Giro d’Italia’.

To be more precise: I first think of the Dolomites in the northeast, nearly equally shared between the provinces of Belluno, South Tyrol and Trentino.

Just looking at the pictures and profiles of the climbs there, does make my heart beat faster.

Obviously, I do not mind wandering off in the Ortler Alps to the west of the Dolomites, if only for the Gavia, Mortirolo and the not any less attractive Bormio end of the Stelvio.

But, as much as I like the area around Bormio, it pales in comparison to that of the Sella group, which may be considered the heart of the Dolomites.

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Giro d’Italia 2015 – The Stats

Giro 2015 VeloviewerAlmost a week has passed since my final ride in Switzerland and I’m slowly coming to terms with the fact that my Giro d’Italia 2015 is over and that it’s mostly going to be the flats of my backyard again as far as riding zee baik is concerned.

Oh well, we had an unforgettable time in Italy and Switzerland once more and collected enough memories during those rides to last for months.

Despite the current heatwave – the temperature is expected to rise to a healthy 40 degrees Celsius – the wind is continuing to do its best to make the efforts of my rides resemble climbing up another mountain.

The only difference with (most of) the wind I endured during my Giro, is that it’s not freezing cold – it’s more like a mistral, which is really not any better…

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Giro d’Italia 2015 – Countdown

Yes, I am completely bonkers and yes, I do know that UCI’s Giro d’Italia has finished.

And I have enjoyed watching that very much, with Contador’s comeback on the Mortirolo probably being the most exciting hour of an overall eventful race.

However, that was just to warm me up for my own Giro d’Italia 2015, which will obviously be even more epic and I am counting down the days left to the start…

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Giro d’Italia 2015 – Valdisotto

The Stages Part 2: Valdisotto

Bormio 2011For the second part of the Giro d’Italia 2015, we’ve booked an apartment in Valdisotto.

Valdisotto is located just south of Bormio, on the road to Grosio and Mazzo di Valtellina, two starting points for the climb up the Mortirolo.

Other than the Mortirolo from Mazzo, I already cycled a couple of other passes in the area four years ago. Most notably the Gavia (both ends), the Foscagno, the Umbrail and of course the Stelvio.

The latter I cycled up twice, but I’m pretty sure that one of the stages will include it again this year, for instance if/when I decide to ride my own version of the Dreiländergiro*.

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Giro d’Italia 2015

Giro d'Italia 2015 Page Header

Two weeks in heaven

From June 12 to June 26, we were in (cycling) heaven for two weeks for my own ‘Giro d’Italia 2015’. Both from Corvara as from Valdisotto, I cycled the Giro of all Giro’s, concluded with a breathtaking final stage from Airolo, Switzerland.

The first week of my Giro d’Italia 2015, we had an apartment in Corvara, from where a score of passes can be cycled. Most famous new cols for the “Col Collector’s list” were Tre Cime di Lavaredo and Würzjoch, but also de Alpe di Siusi made it on there.

Part two of the Giro was based in Valdisotto, from were the Mortirolo was attacked from Monno and the Bernina was cycled in full, from both ends in one trip. I did that with the Gavia and Stelvio too, by the way…

The final stage of the Giro d’Italia 2015 was, in fact, entirely in Switzerland. It included the Gotthard, Furka and Grimsel, which brought me scenery unlike any I’d seen before, although the preceding revisit to the Stelvio brought back some great memories…

You can read all about the – in total 12 – stages, concluded with a recap in these separate posts:

A stage of my Giro d'Italia 2015 - the Stelvio from both ends

Planning / Preparation

Ever since my epic Giro d’Italia 2011, I’ve been longing to get back to the Italian Alps.

The Bormio area, at the base of the Stelvio and the Gavia, is situated in the Ortler Alps (Lombardia region) and while it’s a great place to be, I enjoyed the Trentino – Alto Adige area just a bit more. Together with Veneto (Belluno) this is better known as “the Dolomites range” and it’s a true paradise.

So, in June Paula we went back there – once again we stayed in both areas to revisit mountains climbed back in 2011, but obviously to conquer new ones too.

In anticipation of D-Day, I wrote a few posts and made a planning, which would be more of a guideline than a fixed course, as I’m famous for my tendency to overestimate my capabilities.

Although my “grinta” goes a long way…

Related posts:

General info on my ‘Giro d’Italia’ expeditions here.

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