Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Pratolino, Vaglia, Bivigliano, Fiesole, Firenze

I tried to start my Wednesday morning rides with Paolo today, but when I texted him last night, he had errands this morning and did not know when he could get away.  I waited until 10, then said I would go on with my day and perhaps next Wednesday will work.  Em and I definitely need to do a trip to the COOP, and her thoughts are 2:00 is the best time of day.  So, I got away a little before 11, after getting all the miscellaneous stuff together, and decided on a ride with some challenging climbs.  I started up Via Bolognese to Pratolino, which has the climb from San Bartolo to Montorsoli that is around 500 vertical at around 10%.  From Pratolino, I descended to Vaglia to do the climb from there to Bivigliano.  In years past, this was one of my standard climbs, but I have basically stopped doing it as I found more user friendly climbs to get to the same areas.  It is a fun, but challenging climb.  With the Garmin piece, I can monitor the % of the slope of the climb and the overall vertical of the climb.  Well, it did not disappoint.  The climb has two parts - the first is around 820 vertical at an average of around 12%, at times hitting 18% and sometimes as shallow as 8%.  You have a little respite after this section with even a short downhill, then you have the final climb into Bivigliano, which hit 18% and probably averaged around 14%, but is only around 250 vertical.

The climb was fun and a great workout, so I will probably add this to my standard rides, as it is close to the apartment and easily accessed.  From Bivigliano, there is a great contouring slight downhill all the way over to the 4 way intersection, where I started the real descent on the road to Fiesole.  This is a fun descent, as the road is quite gentle for a long section, and you don't really need to touch your brakes, and even need to pedal at times.  From Fiesole, the descent gets steeper, and is fun all the way back.  Today, I turned off to do the back way from San Domenico, but the road is a little bumpy, and probably best left as a climb.  Back home in a couple of hours.  26 miles, almost 3000 vertical, and an average rolling speed of around 13 mph.  Fun, fun, fun.  The Garmin link gives maps and all the details.

Pratolino, Vaglia, Bivigliano, Fiesole, Firenze by ridingwithcosimo at Garmin Connect - Details

This spring from a hillside just before Vaglia provides excellent water.

On the climb to Bivigliano - the sign says 6 switchbacks coming.

A typical part of the climb to Bivigliano - I almost forgot - new floor!

A gate toward the top of the climb to Bivigliano.

Finally, the top of the climb and start of the descent.  Yee-haw!

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