DOLOMITES - JULY 2018

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Overview

Join us for an unforgettable tour in the Dolomites. Made famous by the Giro d’Italia, which launches this year in Jerusalem, this trip will allow us to stay in a 4-star Mehadrin hotel while climbing some of the most beautiful peaks in the world.

Click on our blog for tips on cycling in the Dolomites.

Option 1

8 days / 7 nights July 03 – 10, 2018
Total Distance: 458 KM / 285.5Miles Daily Avg: 91.6 KM / 57.1 Miles
Total Climbing: 13,277 Meters / 43,390 FeetDaily Avg: 2,665 Meters / 8,678 Feet

Option 2

10 days / 9 nights July 03 – 12, 2018
Total Distance: 635 KM / 395.65 Miles Daily Avg: 90.7 KM / 56.5 Miles
Total Climbing: 17,737 Meters / 58,187 Feet Daily Avg: 2,534 Meters / 8,312 Feet 

TRIP ITINERARY

Tuesday, July 3, 20 Tammuz

We’ll travel from Milan Malpensa airport to My Kosher Hotel in the Dolomites. When we arrive, a mechanic will help us set up our bikes and we’ll go for a quick spin to make sure all’s well. If you’re picking up a rental bike, we’ll do that as well.

We’ll daven mincha and ma’ariv at the hotel, and eat dinner.

Wednesday July 4, 21 Tammuz

We’ve come to cycle and today we’ll climb 5 famous mountain passes. Get ready to lose 1°c for every 100 meters we climb.  Make sure to store some warmer kit in the SAG vehicle before we start for the higher altitudes. We’ll start with Passo Pordoi (2,239 m. elevation), with a vertical climb of 799 meters. The climb is almost 12 km long, and there are 27 hairpin turns. This pass has featured in the Giro d’Italia almost 40 times!

After a short break, we’ll descend and begin the climb towards Passo Falzarego (2,105 m. elevation). Passo Falzarego has a fairly gentle grade at the beginning with maximum gradients approaching 7% on a few straights. The hairpins have a 4% grade. This gives us the chance to gain some speed on the first few hairpins for the upcoming straight, until the next hairpin comes along. This lasts for about the first 7 km.
After that, the hairpins will still have a manageable gradient but the straights start to be longer and steeper. No other Dolomite Pass takes you as close to dolomite limestone as this one.  It takes you so close that you actually go into the mountain as one of the hairpin turns is carved into the mountain.
After a food break at the pass, we’ll continue up to Passo Valparola (2,168 m. elevation). While only 1.2 kilometers long, the climb reaches a max of 15%! We’ll descend to Corvara,where the climb towards Passo Gardena begins. The first part of the rides is towards the town of Colfosco, with a gradient of around 8-9%. It then gets steepers and the hairpins begin. We’ll climb 9.30 kilometers in total towards Passo Gardena (2,136 m. elevation). The climb averages a 6.4% grade, with a max of 12% and 17 hairpin turns. The climb is well worth the effort, because when you reach the top, you’ll have the majestic Sassolungo in the background.


The foliage and road surface changes somewhat as we climb towards Passo Sella (2,240 m. elevation), aka Sellajoch in German; our last climb of the day. The Sella isn’t that hard of a climb. Like most of the climbs in the Dolomites, everything seems hard at the beginning, after you’ve left behind you a long – and maybe cold – descent. That’s why it’s really important to pedal as you’re going downhill. You should always move your legs so that they don’t feel like a block of concrete when you start the next climb.
The vertical climb is only 373 meters over 5.5 kilometers, and there are 0 hairpins. The highest grade we’ll encounter here is 11% and the average gradient is 6.8%. This climb has featured in the Giro d’Italia 16 times. We’ll descend back to the hotel for some well deserved rest and dinner.

 

Thursday, July 5, 22 Tammuz

We’ll start today’s ride with the slight downhill ride of the Scenic Strada Delle Dolomiti. Known as one of the world’s most beautiful rides, there isn’t a point on this road through the Dolomites that doesn’t boast breathtaking alpine vistas. Green valleys are dotted with yellow, pink, purple and white wildflowers. Towering over us are awe-inspiring mountains of sheer rock. Charming wooden houses straight out of Hansel and Gretel peek out from behind trees. Each twist of the road brings an even more spectacular panorama into view.

We’ll turn to head up to Passo di San Pellegrino (1,918  m. elevation). This climb is different than yesterday’s, as it’s much straighter, and much less crowded.  With a brook on our right for much of the way, the sound of rushing water is blissful. The climb is 11.41 kilometers long, a vertical climb of 778 meters, and has featured in the Giro d’Italia 3 times in the last 10 years. After a brief food stop at Passo di San Pellegrino, we’ll begin a stunningly beautiful long descent, winding our way through several quaint and colorful villages. From personal experience I would suggest that you really make the most of that descent, because what goes down must go up.

  

Take in the pristine Lago Alleghe topped by beautiful mountains and another colorful village. After some fairly flat riding, we’ll begin our ascent to Passo Fedaia, a 14 kilometer fight.  Fedaia is super tough!  It is definitely among the hardest climbs that you can ride in the Dolomites. The ascent can be divided into 2. The first part is fairly gentle, and goes through villages.  We’ll ride Via Marmolada and cycle through Serrai di Sottoguda, a nature reserve. The Serra was created first by the erosion of the glaciers and then by the erosion of the Pettorina Torrent. 

The landscape is marvellous and we’ll take in the Franzei waterfall along the way.  (Note: The climbing gradient of the Serrai di Sottoguda is between 9% and 11% but you will be too wowed by this magical place to feel it. Time flies and you will suddenly find yourself exiting this 2 km long canyon.) And then the second part begins. It starts with a 2.7 kilometer long straight climb,  starting with a 10% gradient and most of it 13-14% grade! It is a real beast; it feels like it will never end. When we finally get to the top of that straightaway, we will immediately begin 3 kilometers of 13-18% hairpin turns up to Passo Fedaia (2,054 m. elevation) and the stunning Lago di Fedaia. The vertical climb is 1,062 meters and has featured 17 times in the Giro d’Italia. 

After passing Lago di Fedaia, you will enjoy the beautiful descent back to the hotel.

Friday, July 6, 23 Tammuz

After two long days of climbing, and with Shabbos approaching, we’re going to do the classic loop around the Gruppo di Sella mountain range, one of the most spectacular bike rides in Europe: The Sella Ronda, and we’re going to do it Clockwise.  Number of Passes: 4 – Sella, Gardena, Campolongo, Pordoi. A very strong rider might be able to complete this, without stopping, in 2 hours, 20 minutes, but we will stop for pictures, a bite to eat, and to buy postcards.  Even though it’s only 65 kilometers, there is still plenty of climbing – about 2,100 meters’ worth. It’s fair to call it a proper day in the saddle.

In 1897, Theodor Christomannos is reputed to have said, “These beautiful mountains have remained a mythological world of fairy tales for centuries because you can only cross them on rough mountain trails and by going through inhospitable valleys, where city folk have never set foot.”  Mr. Christomannos’ project was to connect the city of Bolzano to all the Dolomite valleys, creating the “Great Dolomites road”.   The road was officially inaugurated on September 13, 1909. We will ride parts of that road. We’ll start off from the hotel riding towards Canazei and then ascend into the mountains. We’ll encounter the first hairpins right from the beginning and after 5.5 kilometers, we’ll turn up towards Passo Sella.  We’ll have another 5.5 kilometers of climbing, an additional 439 vertical meters, and 10 more hairpin turns. This is the highest peak of the day at 2,240 meters elevation.


We’ll then descend and head towards our second pass of the day, Passo Gardena. Looking at the stats, Passo Gardena climbing from the side of Selva di Val Gardena seems pretty easy. The total distance between the two is only 9.9 kilometers. After 12 hairpins, we’ll reach Passo Gardena (elevation 2,137 meters). This has been part of the Giro d’Italia 16 times.

Now we’re going to head towards Passo Campolongo (1,875 m. elevation). While this is one of the lower elevation climb in the Dolomites, Campolongo has featured in the Giro 14 times. The highest gradient in the climb is 11%, but the average grade is only 6%. We’ll climb 5.8 kilometers, 353 vertical meters, and 13 hairpin turns.  While the road is paved every June, beware of headwinds, especially towards the top.

After a short break, we’ll head towards our last climb of the day: Passo Pordoi. We previously climbed it from Canazei; this time we’ll climb from Arabba. It’s totally different from the Canazei side. Vegetation ends at around 1,600 meters elevation, so while the views are better than the climb from Canazei, the winds can be strong and will decide our pace. After the 3.5 km mark, the real hairpin part of the Pordoi starts: 22 hairpins in 4.5 km! This is an average of 1 hairpin every 200 meters!  We’ll climb a total of 33 hairpins on this climb. Our vertical climb meters here will be 638 meters.

After a nice break to enjoy the victories of the day, we’ll head down to the hotel to get ready for Shabbos.

Shabbos, July 7, 24 Tammuz

Sunday, July 8, 25 Tammuz

Hopefully Shabbos was restorative, and the legs are ready for more climbing. Marvel once again as we cycle through the beautiful Vigo di Fassa valley. This time, we’ll turn right to ascend 10 km to Passo Costalunga (1,752 m. elevation). As we near the top, you’ll enjoy some outstanding views. We will then descend into a beautiful wooded area and admire the pristine and stunningly gorgeous Lago di Carezza. The backdrop of the mountains above the lake makes this scenery picture perfect. The descent is long and very pretty. A small river flows to your right and you feel as though the forest is enveloping you.

The climb to Passo Lavazé (1,808 m. elevation) is very quiet and serene, and 13 km long. For much of the time we’ll be surrounded by an exquisite dense forest, with tall, super straight trees. There is almost no traffic on the road, and the surfaces are very smooth.  In some ways you’ll feel as if you have left the Dolomites, since it is only at the top that you’ll begin to see the familiar Dolomite-stone mountain views.  We’ll climb 936 vertical meters up Lavazé, and the average gradient is 7.7%.

We will then descend into the quaint village of Varena and the small town of Cavalese, before following the Torrente Avisio past Lago di Soraga back to our hotel, riding the Strada delle Dolomiti in the opposite direction.

 

Monday, July 9, 26 Tammuz

4 Passes: Passo di Fedaia, Passo di Giau, Passo Falzarego, and Passo Pordoi

This is the last day for the whole group, and we are going to make it meaningful, and challenging; today’s ride features the most vertical meters of any ride on our tour. We’ll attack Fedaia from Canazei, a beautiful 14 kilometer climb, 617 vertical climbing meters. Don’t worry – the climb up this side of Fedaia is not as difficult as from Caprile. The maximum gradient is 11% and the average is only about 4.5%.  Just before we reach the pass (2,054 m. elevation) we will see the blue-green waters of Lago di Fedaia.

As we descend into the valley towards Caprile, get ready to climb the Monster Giau.  The Passo Giau road from Colle Santa Lucia was the last road built to reach a Dolomites Pass and connect it to another valley. In fact the actual road was built and paved in 1986. Previously, there was just a narrow mule track mainly used by farmers for forestry services. You will find the hardest grade (14%) at the beginning of the Giau climb, as you follow the river Codalonga. The Hors Categorie Giau climb starts with 1 straight km without hairpins, and this is the perfect welcome card for finding your climbing pace. It’s important to focus on your own condition and pace and not on that of others.  If you play your cards right at the beginning, you’ll catch up with cyclists who overstressed the first part of the climb on the last 2 km of the climb. Luckily, after the first km, the series of 29 hairpins begins. The climb will average a 9.4% grade for almost 10 kilometers.  Halfway to the top, the trees start to give way to the classic Dolomite green pastures, and on a quiet day, you may even hear marmots whistle! Our SAG vehicle will be ever ready to provide you with warmer layers as we climb higher. We’ll take a well deserved break at the top (2,236 m. elevation) to refuel.


We will descend from Giau from about 10 kilometers and then take a sharp turn left to head towards Passo Falzarego. We’ll cycle through a National Park, Parco Naturale dello Dolomiti d’Ampezzo, with gorgeous views of the mountain tops. At Passo Falzarego (2,117 m. elevation) we’ll stop for a break and some fuel. We will then begin our 17 hairpin, 11 kilometer descent towards the Passo Pordoi climb.

This is our final climb – to Passo Pordoi. We did it on Friday, so let’s see if you can achieve a PB. Your legs will most certainly be tired, but let’s see what you’re made of! As a reminder: 9.2 kilometers, 33 hairpins, and 638 vertical climb meters.

Tuesday, July 10, 27 Tammuz

For those who have rental bikes, we’ll stop by to return them. We’ll check out of the hotel at 11:00 and make a quick stop in Canazei for some last minute souvenir shopping if we have time. We’ll then head to the airport to catch returning flights. We look forward to cycling together again soon. Arrivederci! Ciao!

Option: 2 bonus days

Tuesday July 10, 27 Tammuz

For those of you who have decided to take advantage of an extra 2 days of riding, you’re in for a treat. We’re going to head to the Stelvio today for a storied ride. The drive is 2 and a half hours, so we’ll leave right after breakfast. The Passo dello Stelvio is the highest pass in Italy at 2,758 m. elevation. Many consider it to be the nicest of all the Alpine passes in terms of scenery, with breathtaking views.


From Prato, its 48 bends carve their way up the mountain in what appears to be an endless road towards heaven, constantly switching back and forth the higher you climb. Although the average gradient for the 24.4 kilometer climb is around 8%, the max. gradient reaches 14%; this is a
HC climb.  Once we reach the top, we will head to Passo Umbrail and then into Santa Maria in Switzerland, before circling around to Prato Allo Stelvio.

Wednesday, July 11, 28 Tammuz

For our last ride together, we will again drive to our starting destination. We will begin in Cortina d’Ampezzo (commonly referred to as Cortina), which is situated in an alpine valley. The Boite river flows directly through the town of Cortina. It is a popular winter resort known for its skiing trails, scenery, accommodation, shops and après-ski scene. We’ll head up Monte Cristallo and around the Tre Cime-Sesto Dolomites Nature Park. The most famous peaks of the nature park are the Cima Undici (3,092 m. asl), Monte Popera (3,046 m. asl), Cima Dodici (3,094 m. asl), Monte Paterno (2,744 m. asl) and of course the impressive and name-giving Tre Cime or Three Peaks (2,999 m. asl).

Here is how our ride looks in stats: Starting in Cortina, we’ll start right away with a 9 km climb, 612 vertical climbing meters.  We’ll reach Passo Tre Croci (1,807 m. elevation), a pass that has featured in the Giro d’Italia. At the summit there are great views of the Monte Cristallo (3,221 m. elevation.) We then have another short 2.7 kilometer climb (113 vertical climbing meters) ending at the 16.2 km mark. Then get ready for a looooong descent – until the 40 kilometer mark, followed by a 15 kilometer climb, 479 vertical climbing meters. After another long (10.5 km) descent, we’ll do a short climb – 4.5 km and 270 vertical climb meters. Another descent – 7.8 kilometers, followed by a whopping 28.5 kilometer, 1,000 vertical meter climb, culminating at Passo Tre Croci! Finally, we’ll descend our original 9 kilometer descent to Cortina.

Thursday, July 12, 29 Tammuz

It’s time to say goodbye until next time. For those of us who have rental bikes, we’ll return them. We’ll check out of the hotel at 11:00 and make a quick stop in Canazei for some last minute souvenir shopping if we have time. We’ll then head to the airport to catch returning flights. We look forward to cycling together again soon. Arrivederci! Ciao!

Option 1

8 days/7 nights July 03 – 10, 2018
5 days of cycling

Total Distance: 458 KM / 285.5Miles
Daily Avg: 91.6 KM / 57.1 Miles
Total Climbing: 13,277 Meters / 43,390Feet
Daily Avg: 2,665 Meters / 8,678 Feet
Accommodations: Double occupancy, My Kosher Hotel, Dolomites
Price: 13,956₪ (Currency Converter)
Non-rider Price: 6,965₪ (Currency Converter)
Non-rider Price with guide: Contact KCT for a price quote
For single occupancy option, add 2,625₪ (Currency Converter)
(Israeli residents must add 17% VAT)

Rental bike: €45/day. We will reserve the bike for you, but you will pay the vendor directly upon arrival via credit card. You take full responsibility for the bike.

Option 2

10 days/9 nights July 03 – 12, 2018
7 days of cycling

Total Distance: 635 KM / 395.65 Miles
Daily Avg: 90.7 KM / 56.5 Miles
Total Climbing: 17,737 Meters / 58,187 Feet
Daily Avg: 2,534 Meters / 8,312 Feet
Accommodations: Double occupancy, My Kosher Hotel, Dolomites
Price: 14,999₪ 
Non-rider Price: 8,348₪ (Currency Converter)
Non-rider Price with guide: Contact KCT for a price quote
For single occupancy option, add 3,238₪ (Currency Converter)
(Israeli residents must add 17% VAT)

Group Pricing
Bring a friend and you both save 5%
Groups of 5 or more – you each save 10%

Rental bike: €45/day. We will reserve the bike for you, but you will pay the vendor directly upon arrival via credit card. You take full responsibility for the bike.

Non-riding partners, family, and friends who would like to join us are most welcome. The Dolomites are an amazing place to visit, especially for nature lovers and those who enjoy sports and the outdoors – adults and children alike. Near to our hotel, My Kosher Hotel, there are lifts to mountain passes, panoramic views, and a broad variety of activities: Trekking, climbing, mountain biking, paragliding, skateboarding, summer grass skiing, horse and pony rides, ice skating, and more.

Staff at My Kosher Hotel are very friendly and helpful, and are able to point hotel guests in the right direction. Alternatively, you can be in touch with us and we’ll help you plan activities and hire the best tour guides.

What’s included

  • Pickup and drop off at airport, including luggage transfer
  • Fully accompanied trip
  • Hotel accommodations at My Kosher Hotel
  • Breakfasts and dinners at the hotel
  • Lunches – packed for the road
  • Friday night Shabbos dinner, Shabbos day lunch, and Se’udah Sh’lishit
  • Services of our support crew and vehicle
  • Pick up by our SAG vehicle, as needed
  • Ground transportation to and from ride for Option 2 riders days 8 & 9
  • Nutrition and drinks on the ride. Nutrition will include Nature Valley bars, Larabars, gels, and candies
  • 1 Kosher Cycle Tours bike jersey (and a time limited promotion code for 10% off other gear)
  • Kosher Cycle Tours Dolomite tour .gpx files for Garmin use

What’s not included

  • Airfare
  • Travel, medical and personal insurance of any sort
  • Additional hotel expenses i.e. phone charges, mini-bar or extra drinks, gratuities

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