Friday, August 26, 2011

Day 19: St. Moritz Bad to Glorenza


We woke up to beautiful sunshine that led us to believe that staying the extra day was the right thing to do. We eat a quick breakfast, rode out to the post office and then mailed all our hiking clothes back to our hotel in Zurich. That meant shoes, hiking pants, GPS wrist-band, and cotton shirts (which had all been laundered the day before). This left us with the lightest possible cycling load as we set off towards Zernez.
From Tour of the Alps 2011

We first used the main road to get to Zernez but after a while found the bike path and followed it. Since we had time, I didn't mind too much when the bike path zig'd off the main road and then headed up into the mountains on an unpaved road. We passed a few interesting places, including what looked like a summer military camp for boys. By the time we got sick of the bike path we were within 5km of Zernez, and rolled into the tourist information center. In the 2007 Tour of the Alps, I had wanted to stay at Il Fourn, a hotel set in the Swiss National Park just before the summit of Ofenpass. We discovered that the hotel had plenty of availability and so we didn't need to make a reservation.
From Tour of the Alps 2011

We ate lunch at the coop in Zernez, which was next to a shop that sold wallets and flip-flops. I found a Swiss wallet which had separate pockets for two currencies (including coin pockets). I bought that. Then I found a pair of flip flops on sale at a good price, so I bought that as well.
From Tour of the Alps 2011

It was warm as we headed up Ofenpass, but clouds came over after we climbed a few hundred meters and we soon had a nice breeze that cooled us off. Ofenpass was multiple climbs and we got to 1200m several times before finally getting to the National Park Hotel at 2:30pm. Since we were fresh, it was too early to stop and we decided to head into Italy if time permitted. Ofenpass was not long after the hotel, and we zipped down quickly under blue skies to the Italian Border.
From Tour of the Alps 2011

I gave Phil a run down of all the options: we could climb Stelvio from the East or over the Umbrail pass. The East side is the pretty side, so he opted for that, which meant running down to Glorenza.
From Tour of the Alps 2011

By the time we'd gotten to Glorenza it was well after 5:00pm. The tourist information center was a bit hard to find as it was hidden away in the corner of the castle town's entrance, but once we found it the lady running it was very helpful. It turned out all the hotels in town were taken, but there was one just outside town that was available. We found it but nobody answered the doorbell. Upon returning to the tourist information center, she called them and they said they were present if we would just barge in like guests instead of knocking at the door like visitors. The information office also informed us that there was no place to buy a SIM card in town, but Prato, the next town on the way to Stelvio would have a place to buy one.
From Tour of the Alps 2011

We checked in on the second try, getting a room for 29 EUR/person, and then getting a nice fancy dinner in town. It was so warm that everything dried over night.
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