Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Monte Frascone 2012

"Where are you headed today?" my neighbor asked.
"Above Vittorio Veneto: Pian delle Femene"
"So you are going there to look for women?" she teased.
"No, there aren't any women there.  Only grass and trees"  I played along. 
"Allora, buon viaggio."

I warmed up on the easy glide down to Vittorio Veneto.   Lots of cyclists out for a weekday, even 2 big groups of 20 or 30.  Turned toward Valdobbiadene and continued through the little town of Revine.  Just past the town is a right turn toward Monte Frascone / Pian delle Femene.  After an initial steep wall, you turn left toward Santuario di San Franceso Da Paola.  The road seems steep, but the parallel Via Crucis footpath to the church is even steeper.  Then you head up a series of long switchbacks through the forest averaging 10-12% for 4 km.  I was doing pretty well on this, but then I stopped at Madonna delle Nevi chapel to take some pictures.  It was tough getting back into climbing rhythm after that, and harder still on the following half-kilometer averaging 13.4%.  After 6 km the grade lessens slightly to 9-10%.  At 9 km you reach the end of pavement at Pian delle Femene. The previously crystal blue sky now turned black and it was clearly time to get outta there.  On the descent I went fast at first, then came to my senses and rode more cautiously.  It's a surprisingly wide, well-paved road considering it's out here in the middle of nowhere.  I got down to Revine and then cruised home with a lovely tailwind.  Hope to return to this climb again soon.  

Santuario San Francesco Da Paola

Lago Revine and the prosecco hills in background

Similar view from higher up at Madonna delle Nevi 646m

Memorial honoring women of the Resistance, who fought
against Italian fascists and Nazis

Memorial to the Alpini in WW I
at Vittorio Veneto  

9km averaging 9.7% gradient

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