Who loves cycling and legendary climbs must save the date: August 29th. It’s the mountain fest, with the traditional Stelvio Bike Day: a day on the slopes, closed to cars, of the mountain Pass unforgettable for the Giro d’Italia history.
Unforgettable hairpin turns and stunning scenery that the last Saturday in August will only see bikes going up to 2,758 meters of altitude, the highest passage point of the Alps. You can choose to climb from Prato allo Stelvio, Val Monastero on the Swiss side and from Bormio in Lombardia. Not a race but a big fest for the cyclists who can choose between the South Tyrolean and the Lombard side.
The event is free and there is no rush, with hundreds and hundreds grimpeurs.
The most suggestive slope is the one in South Tyrol, Prato allo Stelvio, in Val Venosta, along the 48 hairpin turns that led Fausto Coppi to conquer the “maglia rosa” that belonged to the Swiss Hugo Koblet, with a sensational overtaking.
It was June 1st, 1953: Bolzano-Bormio stage, the penultimate of the Giro d’Italia. For the first time the Giro goes up the serpentine that from Prato allo Stelvio leads up to 2,758 meters. Koblet has a lead of 1'59" on Coppi. The Giro seems already finished but on those dirt hairpin turns the Campionissimo launch an attack and the difference in time between the two at the finish line is not only overturned but almost doubled by the Airone who conquers the title. It is no coincidence if the Stelvio Bike Day has the subtitle "Cima Coppi Climbing".
After more than sixty years we can re-experience that page of epic cycling but without time pressure: to get to the top there is no hurry and along the way a number of mountain refuges invite to catch the breath and admire landscapes, looking towards the woods and the meadows of the Stelvio Park or on the peaks of the Ortles mountain group.
The Stelvio Bike Day is also an opportunity to plan a holiday in Val Venosta, very well equipped for a cycling holiday, with bike hotel, dedicated services, climbs, paths and routes for bikers and cyclists, suitable fot any preparation and ambition.
For example, the Via Claudia Augusta cycle path runs from Merano to the Resia Lake between orchards, churches and castles, with the possibility of using the train + bike to go back to the starting point or to make the tour easier. There are also many side streets that from the valley floor climb up between the farms and then up to the peaks.
Mountain bikers can count on a rich network of enduro trails, paths suitable for families and paths for experts, with one of the most spectacular path in the territory of Prato allo Stelvio that goes in the heart of the Covelano marble quarry, the highest in Europe.