One of the world's great climbs, the Stelvio is an absolute must ride for every serious cyclist. This stunning cycling region makes for a perfect cycling weekender with some classic climbs and great local routes. Over a long weekend, we take in the four best rides in the area taking in both sides of the Stelvio, the classic Gavia / Mortirolo loop and a ride into Switzerland over the beautiful Bernina Pass. We take all the hassle out of getting to Bormio with an easy airport transfer for you and your bike, maximise your riding time over a long weekend and enjoy four unforgettable guided rides.
One of the world's great climbs. We take in all three parts including the most famous way up from Prato (pictured) with it's 48 hairpins & a time trial on the last day from Bormio.
While the Stelvio is the most famous climb in the area, the Gavia is absolutely unmissable and another long, high climb which anywhere else would be the highlight. We climb from Bormio, 26km at 5% before a rapid descent down the other side.
After a tough ride, what's better than soaking in the world famous thermal baths. We take a trip to these on Friday after the ride as well as enjoying the wellness centre every day at our hotel.
In a trip including 3 climbs above 2,000m, this is the hardest of the lot. The Mortirolo 12km at 11%, a consistent tough gradient all the way up, no surprise many pros call this the hardest climb in cycling.
Airport collections are from Milan Linate (LIN) on Wednesday at 11.45am so please arrange for flights to arrive before 11.20am. Our driver will be waiting for you in arrivals. On Sunday, we leave the hotel in Bormio at 11am to get back to the airport at 13.45. Please arrange flights back to leave after 15.45. The transfer takes around 3 hours and includes space for your bike box.
Collection from Milan Linate at 11am, arriving at the hotel for 2pm. We will have a light welcome lunch and then you have time to get your bike set up. The afternoon is at your leisure, if you want a little spin we will provide you with a few options including the short but fun climbs up to Cancano or Bormio 2000. In the evening, we meet for dinner all together at the hotel for a meal with the guide where we go through the plan for the week.
The Queen's stage is our first ride of the weekend. We meet after breakfast at 8.30am for a 9am roll out. Almost straight away we are onto the Stelvio starting together but then climbing at our own pace. The guide will try and ride with as many people as possible. After descending down to Prato, we take on the famous 48 hairpins to the summit, our Cima Coppi of the weekender before descending home for an arrival time of early to mid afternoon.
After a tough day yesterday, we go again for another 3,000m elevation day with two massive, legendary climbs. Setting off at 9am again, we climb almost immediately on the 25km Gavia before a descent and then we hit the toughest sector of the weekend, the 12km of the Mortirolo. When we get back to Bormio, we have an option to head to the thermal baths for a relaxed soak before dinner.
A third day in a row with a different climb above 2,000m and another day with 3,000m of total elevation. For anyone wanting an easier day, we have a few options for shorter routes. On the main ride, we head down to Tirano before heading into Switzerland and the long, long climb up the Bernina pass. A stunning route over less ridden climbs.
For those wanting more, on the final morning we get in one last climb and your chance to set a KOM up the Stelvio. We leave the hotel at 7am for the 21km climb. 1hr 11 is your time to beat for the men and 1hr 27 for the women. From the top, we turn around and descend home to pack our bikes and have a quick shower before leaving the hotel at 11am.
We are climbing high every day so check the weather and prepare for everything. We will be climbing in the morning so layers are key and then the first descent of the day is likely to still be fresh so arm warmers and a windproof jacket are key even on a warm day. A warmer jacket might be needed so bring it. You are unlikely to need leg warmers or overshoes. There is a free laundry service at the hotel so you can get by on 2 lots of kit. In the hotel there is a track pump and workshop. If you have anything specific for your bike (ie Garmin pedals etc), make sure you bring any relevant tools. Helmets are mandatory on all rides.
Bormio is a small, pretty mountain town. The historic centre is well worth a wonder. The main draw in town apart from the cycling (and skiing in winter) is the thermal baths which are well worth a visit. We go there on Friday after the ride. There are some nice hikes for non-riders or people wanting more exercise in the afternoons.
A warm, family run bike hotel in a great location in Bormio, the Hotel Alu is the perfect base for our Stelvio Weekender. The rooms are comfy and its no surprise this is always one of the best rated hotels in the area. There is a bike room with washing area & small workshop and a nice wellness centre.
From Bormio to Bormio
The Queen Stage of our Bormio Weekender. Starting out of Bormio we take the first part of the Stelvio, through the tunnels and over the hairpins before crossing into Switzerland and the Umbrail pass. From here it is a long descent down to Prato for the classic ascent of the Stelvio. This is the most famous side of the climb featuring 48 hairpins over 24km with an average gradient of 7.4%. From the top, you can freewheel all the way back down to Bormio, a glorious 21.5km decent.
From Bormio to Bormio
Another absolutely classic ride in the Italian Alps featuring two stunning climbs. Straight out of Bormio we are onto the gentle gradients of the bottom part of the Gavia. This is one of the longest climbs in the area at 25km and topping out at over 2,600m. The climb gets steeper near the top but nothing compared with the next climb, the mighty Mortirolo. This 10km climb AVERAGES 10% with very little let off. Survive this and you have a fast descent and then a flatish ride home to Bormio.
From Bormio to Bormio
A ride into Switzerland with another climb over 2,000m. The Passo Bernina is a monster at over 35km with close to 2,000m elevation in one climb!! The ride starts with a quick ride down the valley from Bormio to Tirano before heading into Switzerland. The first 20km of the climb is gentle before some sharper gradients from the 23rd km onwards. Then we have a descent to Livigno before two more named climbs and then a final descent back into Bormio.
From Bormio to Passo dello Stelvio
Here it is. Your chance to race against the clock on the mighty Stelvio. Straight out of Bormio the climb starts and has a number of distinct sections. After riding through the first tunnel, there are some steep switchbacks before heading along the valley, past the waterfall and up more hairpins before a long saddle and the turn off to Switzerland. Then just a short section with, you've guessed it, more hairpins. 1hr11 gets you the men's KOM, 1hr27 for the women's.