cansiglio 1

Great ride and climb just northeast of Vittorio Veneto and Conegliano.  You can get to either place to start the ride.  My suggestion is that if you are arriving on the train jump off at Conegliano and finish your route in Vittorio Veneto.  You you are planning on an overnight stay in the area I like Vittorio Veneto as a more relaxed location and better base for more rides where you do not have to deal with traffic.

 pian cansiglio vittorio

The route profile shown above is the ride I did starting at the Conegliano train station and ending in Vittorio Veneto.  It looks inviting to ride the opposite way, but it is not a very good ride. 

Riding out of Conegliano follow signs to Vittorio Veneto - Colle Umberto - Sarmode - Bosco del Cangsilgo - Farra - Vittoria Veneto.

From the walled city of Conegliano, the birthplace of the famous artist Cima da Conegliao (15th century) you take a secondary road toward Vittoria Veneto.  This is a good flat section to warm up the legs.  In Sarmode you will start the log climb up to the Cansiglio.  The area you are riding through is the birth place of Ottavio Bottecchia, Italy's first Tour d'France Winner and were the annual race 'Giro del Belvedere' is held. 

The climb is 15.5 km and one of the longest in the area.  There are no stretches that allows a rest and average grade is 6.5%.  On the lower part of the climb you get some great views of the Piave and lower valley, around 800 meters the environment changes and you are in the Cansiglio woods.  The climb tops out at Crosetta, (where many of the Italian and European Mountain Bike championships have been held), this upper plain is still covered by silver fir, spruce, and beeches which were once cut to provide wood for the Venezia sailing fleets.  Surrounding the upper plain are mountain peaks of Pizzoc, Monte Cavallo and Alpago, along the main route you will see the right turn that will take to the Mt. Pizzoc peak. This is a nice extra 500 meters of elevation gain and offers you some great photos.

There are plenty of places to stop for a caffe at the local hotels and sports centers but you might want to stop at the small village still made up of the Cimbri population whom are originally from the Bavaria area of Germany.  Today's inhabitant's still maintain the language and lifestyle of the orginal settles.  The upper plain lasts for about 7 km and when you cross the provincial border into Belluno you will start the steep and technical descent toward Spert. 

At the Spert you will follow the signs toward Vittoria Veneto riding along the shores of Lago S. Croce, (well known for wind surfing).  This is a nice road with little traffic most of the day and you will follow it down into Vittoria Veneto.

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