Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Day 5: St. Vigil - Valle di Codore

Woke up to the alarm as usual and went to have some breakfast. At breakfast we met two other bikers which where spending the days biking around St. Vigil. After packing up all our things, getting out our rain gear (as it had started raining) and repacking our rain gear (as it stopped ten minutes later) we set of towards the Pederü house. Biked past the place the bike group had stayed four years ago and proceeded up a hill before going up along the valley. The GPS encountered some problems, so we took a few detours at some points. Had a few more metres in altitude thanks to that. We meet six bikers on our way up the valley, all German speaking. Had a chat and turned out they don't like water as they used every mini bridge across the stream we where following. They turned out to be a lot faster than us as they left us in the dust. Last time I biked up that valley it was blue sky and sunshine, but this time we had a very heavy cloud cover and getting near to the hut we where caught in a downpour. We stood under the Pederü house until the rain had receded, like so many other bikers. Had a good view of the concrete road our group had tried to get up four years before.
After the rain had turned of downpour mode we set up towards the Rifugio Fanes. A way up where we met a lot of other bikers. On the way up, the clouds lifted a little and we had some sunshine moments in the dolomites. Stunning views as I remember them. Nico had a small competition against two women and I (tried) to keep up for the most time. The sun shone over us for a while on the way up, so that kept us sweating. Reached the Rifugio Fanes and ploughed on to the top. Reaching the top (after passing a very Scottish/Welsh lake -> misty) we put our long and waterproof clothes on, enjoyed the view (50m sight) and biked down to the Malga di Fanes Grande where we had a very good lunch. Just at the right time as well as it started raining a bit again. We also met our six collogues from before again. We had overtaken them when they had some breakfast in the Pederü house. Going downhill we where greeted with sunshine again and a very rocky track. Typical Dolomites again. Some spectacular scenery again, but we had already reached the bottom in the valley of Cortina d' Ampezzo. Biked through forest, along riverbeds and even on an old airfield towards Cortina. Lots of people in the area again. 
After following the bike path in to Cortina we had a short break to eat our sandwiches from the morning. Passed a lot of people, some strange some not and Nico got a picture of a car. We rolled down most of the time, just sitting on our bikes and letting the bike do all the work. There where some parts uphill, but they where few and far apart. We managed a lot of kilometres that way, but it felt really slow to me. After some time we started looking for an overnight possibility but the first place we found was a bit over our budget. So roll to the next town we did. Also nothing there. It complicates the situation a bit when Nico and I can not speak Italian and no one here speaks English or German. After rolling on, asking at a bar and then a tourist information we finally got a place located just about next to our track. Very cheap considering we got a whole flat for ourself. TV, kitchen, etc. everything there (except internet of course *grumble*, but we had had no luck what so ever with that in the Alps). The owners even drove us to the nearest supermarket and then to a very good pizzeria. Very friendly people, with lots of forthcoming help. Thank you again to the Rosa appartamento in Valle di Cadore for all they did. After stuffing ourselves with Pizza we went back to watch a DVD. Then to bed and to write the blog.
Track at GPSies and pictures at Picasa

Time in saddle: 5 hours 36 min.
Distance: 69.28 km
Average speed: 12.37 km/h

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