A journey into the unknown
23 years ago, when the participants of the first BIKE Transalp started over the Alps, it was like a journey into the unknown, everyone could feel a little like Kirk and Spock on the bridge of the Enterprise, to go where no human has ever been before. Today, the transalpine routes are more used and adventure trips, like back then, no longer seem possible. But – that is still possible!
The 2021 Transalp Route is proof that the spirit of discovery in the Alps is far from being a buyout model. From Nauders, the route leads via Livigno into the rugged mountain region between Ortler and the Adamello Group. Against the backdrop of mighty mountain giants covered with glaciers, the Transalp winds its way over adventurous passes such as the Passo dell'Alpe (2461 m) and the Forcella di Montozzo (2613 m). There are no ironed fun tracks leading above it, but old cart tracks, which follow downhill in a rumpy way, but are just as fascinating in the great outdoors.
This awakens the old Transalp spirit of discovery, on paths that were not built for bikers. There used to be no other paths. When the route continues via Santa Caterina Valfurva and Aprica to Valle di Peio, three completely new stage towns await you one after the other - and consequently a series of paths that have never been part of the Transalp route. Now, even the forest tracks are getting rough and pristine. There are no motorways built for forestry transporters, but paths to small alpine huts that challenge the old dented Fiat Panda 4x4, paths that are just as marked by life as the old mountain farmers who drive them.
From Valle di Peio the route leads via Molveno to Valle di Chiese and finally to Riva del Garda. And even if the route approaches the mountain bike Mecca at Lake Garda, there is still a lot to discover. The connection from Val di Sole to Val di Non to Andalo and Molveno is as wild and original as the paths that lead to Valle di Chiese on the shore of Lake Idro. The last stage shows how close the unknown and the familiar are to each other in the mountains. The crowning finish of the Transalp leads over an absolute classic, from Tremalzo over the Passo Rocchetta, Pregasina and the old Ponale road down to Riva del Garda - the descent is heartbreakingly beautiful, known to everyone who has ever been to Lake Garda. The title of the very first BIKE magazine was photographed here in 1989.
But nobody knows the route from Lake Idro to Tremalzo. Only a few kilometres from the Hot Spot you can still find less frequented paths, which are just as fascinating as the well-known routes around Riva. The spirit of discovery of the Transalp is far from dead, there are still so many unused paths. If destinations such as Livigno or Nauders continue to open up new mountain bike routes and enrich the trail network in the Alps year after year, route planning cannot become boring in the years to come. This spirit of discovery has a future. Warp 9 Mister Sulu!
|Stage 1||NAUDERS - LIVIGNO||5||96,53||3.175||to stage 1|
|Stage 2||LIVIGNO - SANTA CATERINA VALFURVA||4||78,81||2.759||to stage 2|
|Stage 3||SANTA CATERINA VALFURVA - APRICA||4||82,11||2.564||to stage 3|
|Stage 4||APRICA - PEIO||5||90,32||3.232||to stage 4|
|Stage 5||PEIO - MOLVENO||5||89,56||2.688||to stage 5|
|Stage 6||MOLVENO - VALLE DEL CHIESE||4||79,60||2.087||to stage 6|
|Stage 7||VALLE DEL CHIESE - RIVA DEL GARDA||4||60,00||2.436||to stage 7|