My first bicycle  tour to a big international professional cycling tour to the 90th  Giro d Italia-hoz in 2007

I drove by car to East and  South Tyrolia to Lienzbe in May  2007.

Approaching Lienzhez I saw the huge clouds. I was looking quickly for a small, cheap hotel outside of the small town for a  small ,cheap hotel, and laid down to ease my head aches. After almost two hour sleep I got up and I hardly believed my eyes , because the  opposite mouintains for example  Steinermandl were dressed in white.
I originally planned, to go by bycicle up to the pass Passo di Campologo next day. Unluckily I left my cycling shoes at home.
Monday morning I  was standing at early  opening in front of the bikers shop. In the second one it was a sale and I bought a  pair of  shoes of pleasant wear at half price !
So I only made my circles and turns in the small town to discover it. I cycled along the river Drau also along the other  bank, then I climbed up on a  steep ascending to the spot of the last categorized mountain climb (at Bannberg) about 1260 m hight.
Well ahead of the expecting peleton I had time  to  look around also in the cementry whiles the rain stopped.
The sun was later comming out partially and revealed  Eggenkofert (2590m) in full glamour.

               noch_2_km_zur_Bergwertung.jpg             ColdelIzeran2770.jpg           Abfahrt_nach_Bergwertung
                    Giro 2007  small mountian roads lead up                 categorized mountain climb at Bannberg 1260m               wet roads, hairpin turns
I learnd in the mean time from the awaiting fans, how lucky I was finally not to have gone up to Passo di Campolongo.
First in the Giro history the peleton was stopped, letting everybody dressing up, for the temperature dropped   25 C in two days and it was heavely snowing in that area.
A former  Giro overall title winner Garzelli (piratino : the small pirate ) took advantage of the bad weather, the wet roads and "flown away "  on the narrow mountain roads  gaining about  50 mp  won the climb.
But at that time 28 km were still ahead.
The chasers were not strong and not acting in usison, the road conditions were not favarable either for a fast downhill ride, because I could follow on TV in the evening , what happened after the climb. After the desending to the Lienz flats , they made a small circle around Lienz, almost in front of my hotel as well. Garzelli again concentrated and won the stage with one minute advantage.It was  his second stage win at this year s Giro.

       Ein_Radler_saust_bergab          Monte_Zoncolan_Blick_zu_Karnischen_Alpen         noch_150m_für_Simoni
              12  hairpin turns from Plöckenpass/                      mountain finish at :Monte Zoncolan 1730 m            thousands of fans  enjoying Simonis victory

Some cyclists followed hin in certain distances,then the bulk arrived lead almost by Bodrogi in the Hungarian champion s jersey .
I drove to another   valley South from here,which was also sourrounded by high peaks f.e. Zwölferspitz 2593 m to the town  Kötschach-Mauthenbe, where I took a  room with nice view in a family family inn..

I started my bycicle tour next morning May 30th, 2007. in sunshine passing under the  Peak Polinik (2331 m) ascending from  700 m to the pass top 1360 m-re on Plöckenpassra. i found some pretyy steep sections (13 % ),which made me sweat.
íÍi deffinetelly need more training ! But then haipin turns lead the road  to South Tyrolia and in some minutes I was in the valley.
I was really sorry for pulling the brake handles so much.
Soon I had to realise the road is descending again up to Monte Zoncolan 1730 m (length: 10.1k, gain: 1203m, avg: 11.9%, max: max: 22%).Thought this side was not so steep as you could read in the bracket, I arrived almost  too late.
I laid my bike in the bush and ran up to the finish line. There were thousands of  fans ! I shortly met some Hungarian young cyclists wiith bikes. I was waitng no longer than  5  minutes, the loudspeaker announced that  Di Luca, Piepoli,Cunego and the still very péopular  Gilberto Simoni appraoching us with 20-30 mp gain. They appearred in the hairpin turn.
Finally Piopoli (Liquigas) let his team mate,Gilberto Simoni win. In result Simoni jumped up in the third rank of the general classification .
I took also a photo of Bodrogi Laci the only Hungarian competitor, who arrived in a relatively good place, though this was the king stage with ascending max. 22 %.
In the chaos afterwords , when the whole mount got moving, some thousand cyclists tried to find their way downhill, I could not find my bike.
Even the mountain riflemen, who were to maintain order were looking for it , too.
Then I gave up and  started to walk downhill in company some soldiers.
Then I turned back last. I suddenly noticed  I was not comming up on white gravel raod, but apparently  freshly asphalted road .
At that point I knew I was looking in a wrong area on the mountain top. So I ran back,
I found my 20 years old East German  Diamant bike unhurt , on it laying a  Liquigas cap( This stage winners team ) !
After I followed an Italian cyclist through the crowd of walkers ,who made his way  with permesso (may I?) shout.
I just added a polite " grazie tante ".
Some minutes later the road became broader and the great rolling contest started.
Hundreds of young cyclist were hurtled along at an incredibe pace. Climbing uphill was not my time, but now I could folow them descending  at a high spead. In one of the hairpin turns i even overtook the Astaorna team truck victoriously.
The sobering came fast. From 550 m up to 1360 m again through 12 hairpins turns "tornati".
This day I absolved 2220 m level difference ascending.

Next day : I planned a round trip of  100 km from Kötschen-Mauthen. I cycled through the charming town of Hermagor up to  1077m Kreuzberg pass. I enjoyed a  refreshment here. The descending  enjoyed again much better, then I tured to the right to
Weissensee .
I cycled half  around the  lake, as the pleasure boat was just starting.

        Hochwarter_Höhe_im_Obergailtal        Weissensee_Promenadenschiff          Gailbersattel_982m                           Hochwarter Höheim                                                 Weissensee 930 m                                                  Gailbergpass 982 m

In Drau/Dráva valley at Oberdrauburg, turned to Gailbergpass (982 m ).
After I descended to Kötschach-Mauthen, arrived half an hour before closing time the museum with a shocking exhebition about mountain battled of the Wold War I ,where the renowned Doberdo front involved the Hungrian army, was shown..
Result of  two year deadly fight : a gain of 18 km in the front , losses of both sides several hundred of thousands dead !

                  1915_Stellung_allas.jpg         Brückenbau_ueber_Isonzo         Soldaten_zur_Spitze
                harcálláspont a Dolomitokban 1914-ben                  bridgehead at bank of Isonzo river                  montain climbing with full equipment in winter

According to the weather forcast again rain was expected, so  I headed home.
I just made a brief tour of 25 km  around  Ossiacher See-t at overcast weather.                      

         Stuetzpunkt        Stift_Ossiach_Apatsag.jpg        kerekparos_tura_Ossiacher_See

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