Friday, April 29, 2016


Finally rode up to Casso.  Beautiful views of Lago Vajont and surrounding mountains.  The town is full of stone houses with narrow stone walkways instead of streets.  Ride up and check it out!

Monday, April 25, 2016

Pala Barzana

A week of rain, appointments, and only one bike commute.  But the skies cleared this morning and I headed for the hills.  Pala Barzana to be exact, a favorite nearby climb from Maniago to Poffabro, through the gap between Monte Jouf and Monte Raut, then down through Bosplans and the tunnel to Montereale Valcellina.  Lots of folks out enjoying La Liberazione holiday.

Monte Raut got a dusting of snow yesterday

The rugged mountains above Andreis

View to northwest

Friday, April 15, 2016

Cadolten Malga Coro MTB

This is my third time up this climb and I think it's becoming a favorite.  You can access it from either Sonego or Osigo, but I think the latter begins out slightly more gradually.  That helps get you in the right frame of mind.  There are numerous concreted ramps on the steepest sections which also helps.

The scenery is lovely forested mountainside with views of foothills and plains in the distance.  Once you reach the alto piano of Cadolten you cross rolling grassland and then a conifer forest which is perpetually shady and still snowy in mid-April.  Here I tried a new road up to Malga Coro.  This was on a grassy hill with great views in all directions.  It was cold and windy up there though so I turned back.  

A short ride brings you to the Monte Pizzoc road (still snowed-in above Cadolten), then to the strada provinciale toward Caneva (only traffic: a young man walking a cow).  I turned off onto Strada dei Patriarchi and cruised all the way down to Villa di Villa and the car.  Need to explore this area more.

Snowy coniferous forest road at Cadolten

Monte Pizzoc from Malga Coro

Watering hole near Cadolten


The climb from Osigo

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Via Guitcillo da Montanara MTB

Beautiful April morning with hundreds of bike riders on Via Pedemontane.  At Rugulo I weaved through a crowd coming out of church and continued on to Montaner.  I turned right on Via Guitcillo da Montanara and started suffering up the precipice.  I made it all the way up without stopping but I was too tired to celebrate.  Soon the dirt road turns to a grass path, which ends by a stone house.  Here you push the bike up over boulders to a deer stand in a clearing and then scramble up an embankment onto a gravel road.  Unfortunately the Garmin screen was tapped by some of the tangled branches and paused the track.  I blithely continued on my way but no navigation data was being  collected.  Not to worry though, I have the track from this exact route from a couple of years.  If you need to plan your route it's here:  Via-Guitcillo-da-Montanara

After some sali/scendi I arrived at the highway from Vittorio Veneto to Cansiglio.  After a few hundred meters I turned off pavement again on the road to Col Oliver.  This eventually connects to Strada dei Patriarchi and then the highway from Cansiglio to Caneva/Sarone.  Great ride. 
Gotta get down from these cold clouds into the sunshine

Death Climb from Montaner to end of pavement

Today's partial track

Complete track from 2 years ago

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Monte Pala MTB

Monte Pala above Clauzetto is one of my favorite climbs.  It's conveniently located nearby but seems quite remote when you get up there.  Today was perfect early Spring weather so I decided to get some photos of wildflowers.  Will try to return here for some hiking this Summer or Fall.

The snow prevented much bikesploration today

Crocuses near south summit

Bouquet of wild premule

Rose di natale

Not sure what these are but they're pretty

These were everywhere along the dirt road.
My friend Wavell said they are in the onion family

The total climb from Molinars

The gravel road to the summit

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Strada della Venezia delle Nevi MTB

I climbed this gravel road in July 2014 and vowed to only descend it if I rode it again. But today that was all forgotten so up I went.  I was already hot by the time I finished the paved introduction so at the start of gravel I stripped to bike shorts only and headed up.  It's a rough surface and fairly remote so I was careful not to break the bike or any bones.  Most of the climb is across from Croda di San Tome, a beautiful sheer cliff face.  At the base of the cliffs runs a wide stream, Torrente Artugna, which was quite noisy with all the cascading snow melt.

I was hoping to reach Sauc and Piancavallo like last time, but ran into snow above 1000 meters.  I pushed the bike a few hundred meters hoping it was just a patch but it kept getting deeper.  The descent is very long and rough even with front shocks.  Luckily there are many treefalls which require you to dismount so I got some brief respite from the beating.  I'll have to try this again this fall, the wildness is worth the effort.  

Note the paravalange near
Castaldia on Piancavallo road

Crode di San Tome with road from Dardago visible on the right

Wonderful spring full of snowmelt: I filled up in both directions

Snow blocks the last kilometer or two

The entire climb

The gravel portion

Friday, April 1, 2016

Tamar MTB

This is a mysterious area east of Tramonti di Sotto.  Several abandoned settlements including Tamar and Palcoda  are hidden among the hills.  I enjoyed a vigorous workout climbing the gravel road up from Torrente Tarceno.  I'll try to come back this summer and hike to some of the other settlements.  Tamar was the only one I could reach by bike.  You can hike here from Campone, the trail sign said it takes 1 hour and 15minutes 

Abandoned house at Tamar

The steep gravel road