Thursday, August 20, 2015

Zoppe da Vodo di Cadore

I can't say I wasn't forewarned.  Most of the accounts of this climb mentioned the lengthy dirt road sections and the ungodly steepness.  But I stubbornly insisted on taking the road bike.  As it turned out the dirt roads were the easy part because they had paved the steep sections to avoid the dirt and gravel washing away.  No, the problem here for a road bike is the gradient.  My 34-30 climbing gear got me up the first kilometer or so before I stopped and walked awhile.  In fact I stopped and walked repeatedly on the first half of the climb.  Even pushing this featherweight carbon bike up the hill was making my lower back scream.  Eventually the grades stayed below 20% frequently enough so I could ride up the hill.

The scenery is beautiful dense fir trees, tumbling streams, glimpses of surrounding dolomite peaks.  Well worth the effort, though next time I will try a mountain bike.   

BTW I started from Longarone, there are tons of parking spots down by the Piave.

Antelao seen from the eaves of a wooden hay shed 

Monte San Sebastion from Tabia meadows 

Pelmo cloaked in clouds as usual

The descent to Zoppe di Cadore


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