Tuesday, February 25, 2014

San Donato / La Panca on another perfect weather day.

Great weather again today, although a little cooler.  It did warm up though, so perhaps the cool was simply because I started earlier.  This is one of my favorite rides and I have not ridden it in over a month.  It also fit my time constraints today, and although I was not as fast as the last time I rode it, I felt good and had much more energy than yesterday.  I left town via Ponte a Ema, Gino Bartali's home town and climbed Via Carota to Osteria Nuova.  Just a beautiful little road with almost no traffic, and with the exception of one part that is around 12%, it is mostly quite mellow.  On the main road to San Donato in Collina, I quickly passed a rider who hung right behind me all the way to the top, then right before the top, sprinted past me.  This must be what a racer feels like when he sets the pace, blocks the wind, for many kilometers just to be passed at the end.

Even though I was kind of expecting it, as when I slowed the rider did not make any attempts to pass, I will admit it was a little irritating to have him pass me at the end.  A sweet descent with a couple of climbs to Incisa where I got some more water.  The other rider turned off on the first road toward Rosano.  I checked the distance between Incisa and the turn off in Figline, as the road is not that pleasant, pretty busy and kind of "industrial", and it is only 4 kilometers.  You can ride it pretty fast so it is less than 10 minutes of this, which is not a whole lot.  From the turn off, you climb to just past Dudda where I turned off for La Panca.  Most times I stop at a favorite bar in Dudda for a cafe, but today, there was a line out the door, as two large parties arrived as I was finishing the approach.  I decided to keep going, and the urge for a cafe was left behind.

I just love the La Panca road, both the little climb and the super fun, long descent.  Today, it was great as always.  A little climb into Strada, then mostly a very fast ride along a ridge then the descent into Grassina.  I hooked up with the Cinque Vie route from Grassina, and was back home on the Viales.  Great ride.  46.2 miles in 3:11 rolling time for an average speed of 14.5 mph with 3422 vertical feet climbed at an average temperature of 61, which includes the sun effect.  Ciao!

Via Carota, San Donato, Figline, La Panca, Strada, Firenze by ridingwithcosimo at Garmin Connect - Details

What a beautiful day to climb to La Panca from Figline.

The Passo de Sugame road around Sting's villa.

There is a 3 or 4 kilometer stretch of road on the climb to Dudda
that stays right around 2%, which means some fast, fun climbing.

This picture is not as good as I would like, but the scenery
today was stunning.  This is on the climb from the Passo
de Sugame road to La Panca.

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