Monday, July 20, 2015

Casera La Pala MTB

This is another climb from the south shore of Lago di Barcis up the precipice of Monte Longa.  Today  I started from Portuz, immediately after the dam.   The road is briefly paved, then turns to dirt/gravel with concreted steep bits.  Like the road from Vallata the landscape is beautiful: tall fir trees immersed in shade on the north-facing slope.  The road switchbacks to and fro until 1200 meters where you reach Casera La Pala.  It's a hiking/snowshoeing hut, very quiet and private, high on the mountainside.

From here I explored some, then rode to Casera Monte Longa, a similar place.  It was my destination a few weeks ago though I never made it all the way to the casera.  Today after visiting the hut I headed down a shortcut to the descent road.  I'd been warned in Fred's blog about nettles along the path and he was right: they stung the heck out of me.  But I did determine that this was not a good shortcut when biking: far too steep and narrow for carrying or pushing a bike. 

The descent was wonderful with lots of gravel switchbacks, then at 700 meters the steep paved road.  Arriving at Vallata by the lake, I recrossed the dam, through the tunnels and home.   Beautiful ride.  Will try some more of the other dirt roads up here soon: there are several more I've never ridden. 

Casera La Pala

Monte Ciastelat from Casera Monte Lunga

Casera Monte Longa

The steep climb from Portuz to Casera La Pala

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