Monte Crostis is a fantastic climb that has come closer than any other climb in Italy to having a date with the Giro only to be stood up at the last minute, as occurred in 2011. We summarize the disrespect shown this jewell later in the summary, but first, the good stuff!!
[All dressed up and no place to go!]
What a climb - nothing more need be said and you can skip to the slideshow for the explanation. While surrounded by lush ground cover and forest as we climb, we also see many exceptional views of the Dolomites formations over the last third of the climb. Within the first 2.5 miles/ 4 km we pass through the quaint
Villages of Mieli and Tualis. Along the way we have constant reminders of promises made/promises broken. For example, there are Giro kilometer markers along the way, probably put in place in anticipation of the 2011 Giro (see KM Marker slideshow at bottom of page). There are also Giro flags and monuments (metal bike in Tualis and monument at the summit - see slideshow).
[The Envelope please . . . and the winner for “Did not get memo in time “ is . . . .
Regardless of the disrespect shown this amazing Dolomites specimen, it is the #4 Ranked Climb by Fiets in Italy. Why? Well, within only 8.2 miles/13.2 kilometers we climb a whopping 4,485’/1,367m at a brutal 10.8% average grade - Monte Crostis has earned its “I am a Bad-Ass badge!”
Roadway condition and traffic: The roadway throughout narrows to essentially one lane at around 3.5 miles. There is very little traffic on this route and we always felt safe throughout our ascent.
[Did we mention the road narrows a bit towards the top . . . note - that is NOT a wide car! ]
Steepest Gradients by Distance
Now, while we have banged on the Giro for throwing Monte Crostis under the bus at the last minute, it was at least initially included in the approved pre-race routes. So, unlike many others who would die for the chance, our heroine has not only made it onto the “A” list but was at the dance when the music started. However, sadly, when her turn came to show her stuff - rejection slapped its dolomite noggin. Ahh, the indignity! And yet, some say making it to the dance is better than not being asked at all, and that Monte Crostis is better for having made the big leagues and rode the pine than never been chosen by the Big Club!. Regardless, it’s a heck of a shame.
2011: Although much effort had gone into safety measures to protect riders on the hazardous descent from the summit down the backside (northern) into Ravascletto, Monte Crostis was eliminated from the Giro by the UCI the night before it was to burst onto the cycling world as the spectacular mountain it was (and is!). Likely the decision was made out of extreme deference to the safety of the riders after Wouter Weylandt died on Stage 3 while descending Passo del Bocco.
"To the tour of Italy and to the many cyclists who honor him
with commitment and sacrifice, enthusing entire generations of
athletes, who are grateful to bring the world to the Crostis and the Peak Overview."
There are photo ops along the way and “the metal bike” in Tualis is one of many!
The Dolomites are only 25 miles / 40 km as the crow flies (60 miles / 100km by car) - see Map. And, Start of Monte Crostis is only 4 miles from that of Zoncolan from Ovaro. In other words, an amazing climbing area!