TransAlp

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ZeroDarkBivi
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TransAlp

Post by ZeroDarkBivi » Tue Jun 25, 2019 2:38 pm

Planning a late summer trip in the Alps, probably a point-to-point route. I want to ride as much singletrack with as little hiking as possible. Not really a proper grungy bikepacking trip as I intend to stay in refuges, etc along the way to minimize kit carried and maximize the riding fun on a capable FS bike. The Dolomites appeals a lot, but also considering Slovenia, or maybe both. Probably have a week or two max, but happy with long days.

Any experience and recommendations?

Very happy if anybody with similar ideas wants to join me.

RobLyon
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Re: TransAlp

Post by RobLyon » Tue Jun 25, 2019 2:49 pm

Not directly relevant but some route options,

This book is aimed at less hike a bike. It's obviously in german but comes with GPX files.
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Alpencross-Lig ... way&sr=8-1

Eastern Alps,
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Alpencross-Ost ... oks&sr=1-6

I think a lot of the trans provence routes are available to download here,
http://ridesospel.com/trails/

The 1st 2 books tend to have pictures of old rigid mtb's in them so not too technical

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gairym
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Re: TransAlp

Post by gairym » Wed Jun 26, 2019 8:52 am

I did a lovely transalp trip in 2012.

Followed the Albrecht route from Garmisch in Germany to Lake Garda in Italy (going through Austria and Switzerland too).

Not that long (~350km) but climby you can imagine.

He put the route together to be as rideable as possible and so the route is nicely rideable without being easy. Loads of great singletrack.

Info can be found here

And here's a link to a video I made of it:

Link!

I'd love to get back and do it again and keep attempting to do so but it'll not happen this year now :cry:
After a 4 year hiatus my blog is back: http://www.blog.gairy.co.uk

voodoo_simon
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Re: TransAlp

Post by voodoo_simon » Wed Jun 26, 2019 10:28 am

This looked interesting

https://bikepacking.com/routes/trans-verdon-france/

Part of a larger ride too, think the larger ride is linked in the article

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ZeroDarkBivi
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Re: TransAlp

Post by ZeroDarkBivi » Wed Jun 26, 2019 11:03 am

Thanks for the feedback.

The German books are, unfortunately, no use to me!

Whilst I have enjoyed many cycling trips in the French side of the Alps, the little I have done in Italy makes me want to go back there.

Gairy - I think you understand the sort of riding I am after - not unlike yourself, I want to enjoy some proper mountain biking this time; more stoke than slog! Already planning a trip next month to Austria to do the route linked below, using the ski lifts to reduce the vertical ascent by half, to a mere 17,000m!

https://www.tyrol.com/things-to-do/spor ... bikesafari

You also know my thoughts on bivis; a recipe for sore back and no sleep, so nit ideal on a demanding multi-day trip of this nature. Are there huts or other B&B options available on your Transalp?

Another couple of options I have found and considering:
https://www.komoot.com/collection/302/a ... h-to-garda
https://www.komoot.com/collection/758/t ... lake-garda

And the Slovenia wildcard:
https://www.komoot.com/collection/918/t ... riatic-sea

I recall reading something about a long TransAlp crossing that encompassed most of the Alpine countries - I think not went from Slovenia North-West to Germany, through Italy, and maybe Austria. Probably too long for this trip.

Any thoughts?
I particular, what's the latest I could safely leave the trip (thinking September), and still find huts open, and snow-free trails?

RobLyon
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Re: TransAlp

Post by RobLyon » Wed Jun 26, 2019 11:38 am

Hans Rey is an ambassador for Livingno in Italy, they have a tutti fruitti route that uses the ski lifts.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UEsM-vNuli0

The area around Finale Ligure might be worth looking into?

I find youtube helps alot to help gauge whats technical and whats more xc.

Alpinum
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Re: TransAlp

Post by Alpinum » Wed Jun 26, 2019 1:43 pm

I've never visited the heart of the Dolomites, but I'm sure it must be mind blowingly beautiful if you like rugged limestone peaks towering above scree slopes, lush green meadows, cold shady forests and good food. Round trip like:
Bolzano - Predazzo - Alleghe - Cortina d'Ampezzo - Stern - St. Ulrich - Bolzano.
(Something I've been considering for a bike holiday with my girlfriend).
Unfortunately it's not a point to point route :wink:
Seriously, Marmolada, Sella group, Tofana, Tre Cime di Laveredo, Civetta, I'd probably just build a route along/around those mountains.

Remember, you have a bike, you're in a highly developed place - bikepacking doesn't get much easier. If you want the freedom to sleep where ever you feel like stopping (on top with great views...), but not bring stuff for boiling water/food - there's huts all over the place. If the weather's poor show - huts all over the place. You basically just need a thin, little mat and quilt/sleeping bag in addition to what you'd bring along anyways. September will be great. One of the best times of the year for such regions and such activities.

I do a lot of tech riding with luggage and it's quite alright. I may be more tired at the end of the day and perhaps struggle a bit earlier in difficult stuff, but sleeping system (perhaps a thin set of longjohns/long sleeve base, socks, buff) and even a very compact kitchen will add about 1 kg (at least in my case it would).
If sleeping out is an important part of your riding and you think that trail biking doesn't go well with bikepacking - give it a try... you'll see, they go hand in hand really well (if you're gear is compact and light).

If you'd like to taste more of the Western Alps, where things are high and big, Val d'Aosta may be a place. Mountainbiking doesn't get much bigger than there. You'll struggle to find single tracks with a comparable amount of vert loss/gain no matter where on the planet you are.

In the Alps' main ranges I struggle to develop and ride routes where I get less than 4500 m vert gain and loss on 100 km distance. To be honest, that's already trying hard to keep it "flat".

The Dolomites are a bit more mellow and thanks to the wars, loads of the uphills can also be ridden - should be fun:-bd

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In Reverse
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Re: TransAlp

Post by In Reverse » Wed Jun 26, 2019 1:53 pm

ZeroDarkBivi wrote:
Wed Jun 26, 2019 11:03 am

Gairy - I think you understand the sort of riding I am after - not unlike yourself, I want to enjoy some proper mountain biking this time; more stoke than slog! Already planning a trip next month to Austria to do the route linked below, using the ski lifts to reduce the vertical ascent by half, to a mere 17,000m!
Be interested to hear how this is. :-bd

Did a mtb tour of the Tirol last summer and it was fantastic. This isn't on your route, but if you get chance I can thoroughly recommend it. Stunning trail.

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ZeroDarkBivi
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Re: TransAlp

Post by ZeroDarkBivi » Wed Jun 26, 2019 10:30 pm

Thanks again for more gems.

How could I forget to consult Hans Rey; is there anywhere he hasn’t been?!

Unfortunately I have spent enough time biving on bike trips to know exactly how it impacts me (spinal injury legacy). I will do it when necessary, but prefer to avoid, particularly when huts are in abundance. Eating processed camping meals is another thing I’d rather not endure when there is a friendly Italian guardian on the hill ready to cook me some proper food!

4 weeks to the Austria trip and accommodation is already thin on the ground; that flexibility to change plans and sleep where you want (if not entirely legally) is one of the advantages of the Bivi. Probably looking at the thick end of £1000 so far in flights, lift pass and b&b. Still far cheaper than Colorado last summer.
I’ll let you know how it rolls.

RobLyon
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Re: TransAlp

Post by RobLyon » Wed Jul 03, 2019 1:39 pm

Routes in the dolomites from german "bike" magazine,

https://www.delius-klasing.de/mountainb ... miten-9803

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