Friday, August 1, 2008
Day 7 Lugano to Flims
According to Squirrel, this was an epic day! Sice he's ridden many of those with Ted, we're assuming he knows what constitutes and epic ride!! We started just before 10AM and after about 4 miles reached the Swiss-Italian boarder, where we got our passports stamped (freakin tourists). We continued our route along the lake of Lugano and then crossed over a small hill to get down to the lake of Como at the town of Menaggio. It was absolutely picture perfect. The route followed along the lake northwards to the end in Dubino from where we started some very gradual climbing to Chiavenna. At this point we've been riding for 2:50hr and covered 51 miles, so we decided to at a cafe for a "real" panini! Squirrel also had an expresso and some gelati! After about 30 minute we got started again and that's when it hit us - the "real climb"!!!
18.96 miles, 6100ft with many 1 mile stretches of 9 and 10% average grades, lots of switchbacks, tunnels and burning hot sunshine! I've never looked so forward to the next tunnel, but getting a bit relief from the sun was great. Once everyone reached the top we stopped again so we could have our second "real" panini, and a bottle of coke!! After this break it was pretty much all down hill until the climb back up to Flims. Unfortunately, we encountered some light rain, that turned into some heavy rain and wind with about 20 miles to go, which made the climb up to Flims just that much harder. Squirrel took full advantage of that and sat on my wheel until 2/3 up and then dumped me! What are friends for!
When it was all said and done, we covered 110 miles and 12,000ft of climbing in 7:11hr of actual riding time. Needless to say, we couldn't wait to hit the warm showers, do a bit of stretching and then fill our bellies!!! Of course, once again we didn't actually get to bed until 1AM.