Alps, July 2013 − Travels − Captain Tom

Alps, July 2013

The annual ride into the Alps. This time we are a very international group. The core team consists of Paul from New York, Kevin from Connecticut, Hector from London and myself from Berlin. For parts of the tour we had Ralf from Georgia and Wolfgang from Augsburg with us and we met Jim and Susan from New Jersey in Arabba. While Paul, Kevin and Ralf flew into Munich and rented bikes there I had to go from Berlin to Munich in order to meet the guys there. Hector came with his bike from London. Jim and Sue went to Switzerland and made a trip over to Italy in order to meet us.

Paul found the hotel in Arabba and I took responsibility as road captain and planned all the rides we made.

We had a lot of fun, good Italian food, many amazing views and even more exciting roads.

Have a look at this signature example of a view: 360 degrees of Grödner Joch
1 Day 1

I go from Berlin to Munich while Paul, Ralf and Kevin receive their rental bikes in Munich and have a little ride around. I meet them in the evening and we have a Bavarian dinner with Zwiebelrostbraten. Hector comes from London and stays overnight close to Munich.

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Paul and Ralf
2 Day 2

We meet Hector and we start our ride to Arabba in Italy. Hotel Olympia will be our base for the week. We will do rides from there into all directions. The route brings us over spectacular passes: Timmelsjoch, Jaufenpass, Penser Joch, Ritten-Landstraße, Sellajoch and Pordoi Pass. Quite exhausting but also very exciting.

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We meet Wolfgang at Sylvenstein reservoir. He will escort us for a fraction of the tour.
We say farewell to Wolfgang at the entry of Öztal valley which we have to pass through in order to get to Timmelsjoch. Hector, Wolfgang, Tom, Paul, Ralf, Kevin
Timmelsjoch is very impressive Ralf on his way up
On top of Timmelsjoch: Kevin, Tom, Hector, Ralf
Video going down the southern ramp of Timmelsjoch
We stop for having cake on top of Jaufenpass
Paul seems to like it.
Many motorbikes on Jaufenpass
View back to Timmelsjoch from Jaufenpass
Video of climbing up Jaufenpass
View from Penser Joch
We stop on our way down Pordoi pass to enjoy the view.
In the evening we meet Jim and Susan. They did not tell us that they wanted to be there so it was a big surprise. Tom, Hector, Kevin, Susan, Ralf, Paul, Jim
3 Day 3

After the exhausting ride the day before we stay in the area and do an extended Sella eight going over all big passes of the Sella area

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View from the hotel in the morning
Cliffs at Falzarego Pass
I have to explore the scenery
Riding shots from Pordoi pass (Kevin in front followed by me)
Kevin and Tom on top of Sellajoch
View from Sellajoch
Waterfall at Pordoi pass
View during lunch
View from Belvedere on Santa Lucia
Hector, Tom, Paul, Kevin on top of Giau pass
View from Giau pass
Tom riding down Giau
The final pass of the day is Pordoi
4 Day 4

We are relaxed now and tackle the most remote target: Großglockner in Austria.

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We pass the Jungfernsprung waterfall at the bottom of Großglockner
The road up to Edelweißspitze is a very narrow cobblestone road with tight turns.
Hector, Paul, Tom, Kevin on Edelweißspitze
View to the road up to Edelweißspitze (the blue white guard rails mark the road)
Quite a lot of snow at the side of the road to Hochtor
Tunnel Hochtor
The video of this ride
View to the glacier at Kaiser-Franz-Josefs-Höhe
At the glacier (Hector, Paul, Kevin, Tom)
On our way back we go over Staller Sattel into Italy
5 Day 5

The Southern loop. A nice trip via Duran pass to Kaiserjägerstraße and Manghen Pass

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Duran pass
Valstagna presents itself as a lovely little Italian town. Some minutes later we will get into a nice thunderstorm.
The video
At the viewpoint on Kaiserjägerstraße. One can see how steep the road is.
Tom, Hector and Kevin
All four of us (Hector, Kevin, Tom, Paul)
Kaiserjägerstraße is attached to an extremely steep rock and is quite narrow
This video shows the way down Kaiserjägerstraße
Manghen pass. The road meanders up the mountain.
Kevin on his way up...
...arrives at Manghen pass house
The house is a good place for a break...
...and a coffee...
...before we descend.
6 Day 6

The Eastern loop. We go to another very spectacular piece of road. Panoramica delle Vette (Monte Crostis). Very narrow, very steep, some sections are gravel road but stunning views in exchange.

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The day starts with Giau Pass. Here is the Video.
View during morning coffee break
A bike sleeps behind a barn
View from Panoramica
Paul approaches the view point on a section of gravel road
Kevin enjoys the view
The gang (Paul, Hector, Tom, Kevin)
The video
Tom descending Panoramica
7 Day 6

Hector needs to return to Munich. So we do a Northern loop towards Sterzing via Penser Joch and then via Würzjoch and Furkelpass

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360 degrees of Grödner Joch
View to Großkogel mountain from Grödner Joch
View to Bozen/Bolzano from Ritten-Landstraße
Views from Würzjoch
Riding up Würzjoch
Riding down Würzjoch
Ride over Furkelpass
We end our tour back in the hotel with a beer.
The waiter wears a traditional costume
8 Day 7

Now I have to go home. While Paul and Kevin have another loop in the area I go directly to Berlin. A very exhausting trip but the weather is cooperating.

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View to Corvara in the morning
Berlin welcomes me in the evening with perfect summer weather
A nice tour, a great week, lots of fun with a great bunch of guys.