The newer we are to cycling, the more we are blinded by the greatness of the most well-known roads. But the more we ride, the more we learn that certain mountain passes are not quite the same when ridden in real life as they are when raced by the greatest in our sport.
Through experience, we learn that many times it’s the unknown roads, the secret spots, the tucked-away, shady corners that offer the most amazing rides, because if they’re unknown to us, they tend to be unknown to campervan drivers and motorcycle riders.
That’s why when we were sent to Alta Badia, in the Dolomites of northern Italy, we worked hard to dig deeper under the surface, to find out where the locals choose to ride, sharing some of the secrets of this region.
Despite our preamble, some of you reading this may still feel a bit lost as to why we’d opt to bypass climbs such as the Pordoi, Sella, Gardena, and Giau for unknown backwaters. But it’s all part of the adventure. Don’t get us wrong: riding those roads for the first time was mesmerizing, but travelling via a tick-list is not how we roll – especially not in summer.