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Easter weekend Day 2 and 3(34 posts)

Easter weekend Day 2 and 3ZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 12:30 AM
Day 2 was Altdorf to Klausenpass. Had to go to Zurich to drop off my girlfriend at the airport, had some lunch there and then drove south towards the Gothard tunnel. Started the ride really late in the afternoon, 17:00 and begun the descend 2 hours later.
outside Old villageZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 12:31 AM
Just outside Altdorf. The home village of Wilhelm Tell it appears. In town there was a statue of Wilhelm Tell bearing a monstrous crossbow on his shoulder and hugging his son with another arm. Did not see any apples on the Junior's head, though.
Apr 30, 2003 12:32 AM
Spring is the air and flowers on the pastures.
Apr 30, 2003 12:34 AM
Road leading to nowhere (well not really)
looking rightZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 12:35 AM
Looking over to the right while riding about 45 minutes from the start point
looking downZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 12:38 AM
I think someone is shadowing me!

(sorry had this goofy urge...)
local lifeZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 12:40 AM
a small dorf (village) near the end of the volley
what lies aheadZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 12:42 AM
outside the aforementioned dorf looking towards the end of valley.
up we goZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 12:43 AM
an hour and 15minutes later the real climb to Klausenpass has begun.
running out of timeZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 12:46 AM
still going towards the pass, it was around 1900 then, the sun started to set lower and lower.
running out of road...ZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 12:48 AM
tunnel and a roadblock!
Apr 30, 2003 12:49 AM
on the dark side of the tunnel. Notice the snow mound. Sure way to stop a car, but not a fundamentalist cyclist!
trespassing x2ZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 12:55 AM
slightly different view of the obstruction one encounters in Switzerland this time of the year. I had to walk over it.

At this point I am about 4-6km away from the actual pass...
i want to go there!ZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 12:51 AM
looking longingly towards the Klausenpass. Not visible hear but to the right of the snow still on the road there was a mass of stones of varied sizes. Not wanting to risk a flat I turned beaten but in good spirits, I will comeback in June!
i want to go there x2ZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 12:52 AM
Better view of the stones and the road that has not been plowed.
swiss bike standZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 12:53 AM
Scapin in a Swiss Bike Stand.
to the rightZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 6:08 AM
Looking at the mountains to the right of me. This is one and the same snow covered mountain slope as seen in previous pictures. It gives you the sense of altitude and closeness to the mountains as I rode.
in the volley belowZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 12:57 AM
Looking down at the bottom of the volley.

Last picture of the day. Ate some swiss candy, put on leg warmers and winter jacket and coasted down.
Day 3ZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 1:01 AM
Rode from Wassesn to Sustenpass.

Got up early to get as much cycling in as possible wanted to do 2 passes (or as much as possible of them since of the road conditions). Turns out the Mother NAture decided I have seen enough of beautyful Switzerland.
base campZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 1:02 AM
Quarter till 9 am, getting rained on (slightly) already. Hotel Alpenhof I stayed at in Wassen.
went up right from the startZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 1:04 AM
Almost half an hour later looking at a church in Wassen.
kayaking upZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 1:05 AM
With altitude ascended the rain thickened. You can see the water literally streaming down the road if you look at the broken white lane line. Farther ahead is a car descending towards Wassen.
rain wallZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 1:07 AM
Looking to the left, the mountains become obscured in the rain
getting worseZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 1:08 AM
small farming community at the end of volley below.
getting even worse...ZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 1:09 AM
That is a lot of snow on the ground, never mind the water on road. The white flakes across the picture are not dandruff but real snow. At this point (almost 2 hours into the ride) not only it rained but it snowed as well.
ever present roadblocksZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 1:11 AM
Once again a road block. The falling snow is starting to thicken.
re: Easter weekend Day 2 and 3ZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 1:13 AM
Coming finally to reason I decided to turn around. You can see the clumps of snow that started to form on the pavement. It was not raining anymore it begun to snow heavily at this altitude (over a quarter of an hour ago). 2 hours almost to a minute into the ride I get off the bike and start frantically to put on more cloths. During the climb I wore shorts, cotton long sleeve shirt, short sleeve jersey and raincoat. By the time I take off the dump with sweat shirt and jersey and put on the full length bibs and winter jacket, I am cold and have shoes full of water. Descending I rode awfully slow until the final kilometers before Wassen. When I got to the car I realized I left my spare tube in the car, yeah, I carried a pump - an extra weight - for nothing (...) I slapped myself really well on the head for that (leaving without a spare, not the extra weight!).
the endZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 1:22 AM
After I arrived at the hotel parking lot I changed into dry cloths. The weather was bad in the volley as well. Not having any dry cloths left anymore (shoes were like mini aquariums) I "threw down" my bicycle and surrendered. Having spent 30minutes in the car with the heat fully on I started to drive back to Italy.

Bellow a map with the 3 passes I attempted. I really recommend this area of Switzerland. In 3 days during summer one can do a lot of climbing here with all the passes opened.
Great report and pics!noveread
Apr 30, 2003 8:27 AM
Many thanks for the great reports. It's nice to see something from across the pond!

I'm glad you enjoyed it - nmZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 8:49 AM
Great pics . . .ms
Apr 30, 2003 6:40 AM
It always is a treat to see cycling pics of the Alps from one's desk -- a nice break from more mundane things. Thanks for posting the pics (and those from Day 1, too). Back in February you posted a question about the Etape du Tour. Did you register and get a jersey number?
Apr 30, 2003 7:54 AM
...laziness took over and I did not registered for it. Having read the registration form it appeared to me that anyone who doesn't have a french cycling license has to do a lot of leg work to get in on it. I just recently got my italian license, and have yet to do my 1st race (That certainly will be a beating for me. he he.) Perhaps I misread the form. Are you registered?

Anyhow, I went this last weekend to Norway and I was told about a Trondheim (sp) to Oslo race. It is over 500km (300+mi), I am sort of playing with the thought of doing this one for various reasons. On my team there is a Norwegian guy, maybe he is going to do it, I will ask him this coming Tuesday during the team's monthly pasta dinner.
Etape du Tourms
Apr 30, 2003 8:25 AM
The registration is not difficult for riders without French licenses so long as you prepare in advance by getting your physician's certificate completed. In any event there is a very small window for registration -- it opened on January 29 and closed somewhere around February 12 this year. I am registered for the event (thanks to the efforts of PhillipeC).

The Norwegian race sounds interesting. One advanage to your doing a long ride/race in Norway in the summer is that you probably will have some light in the sky throughout the entire race.
Etape du TourZvierBoy
Apr 30, 2003 8:40 AM
Yep, the medical form is what derailed my steel will.
It was about 2 weeks after I completed my physical for my Italian licences and did not feel like being poked and prodded again (not litterally).

Come to think of it I bet I could have gone to my FD and present her with the earlier test results and she would just fill in the Etape's form. Duhh!!!

Next year.

Good luck and let us know how the right was.