Monte Grappa offers the greatest concentration of HC climbs to one summit than any other mountain in the world There are 11 HC climbs within just 13 kilometers, using the finish as the center point for our radius. We LOVE Monte Grappa and highly recommend it for any serious climber's Ultimate Bucket List. All 11 HC Monte Grappa routes finish at the Rifugio Bassano a Cima Grappa which is a cafe with many outside chairs and tables frequented by droves of cyclists each day (particularly on the weekends) - this is a very popular Italian cycling destination. The Rifugio is just below the Sacrario del Monte Grappa which is a mausoleum for approximately 20,000 of the Italian and Austrian soldiers who died in battle on the hillsides of Monte Grappa during World War I. If you have the time, obtain the Brevetto Del Monte Grappa Stamp Book and receive stamps at the bottom and top of each climb (if pressed for time, give it a go in 6 days as we did in 2016 - una grande sfida!!).
We believe Monte Grappa has the highest concentration of HC climbs than any other area in the world. The 11 Monte Grappa HC climbs within a 17.5 mile radius are unparalleled. We spent 6 days on Monte Grappa climbing all 11 ascents in the Brevetto del Grappa Journey Book (completing the climbs in more days would have been preferred, but our tight schedule permitted us nothing more).
Originally, we had planned to climb only Semonzo which is a Top 20 ranked Italian climb. However, while researching Semonzo, we stumbled across the Brevetto del Grappa which is a challenge to all who will accept it to climb the 11 routes up Monte Grappa in a year. The company Energiapura Race Suits sponsors this fun and difficult challenge and makes available in Romano d'Ezzelino a Journey Book which has a page for each climb and a location for 2 stamps (one for the start of the climb and the other for the Cima Grappa - top of the climb). The objective is to have your book stamped at each of the 11 stamp locations (usually a tavern or ristorante) at the beginning of each climb and then at the top after completing the climb. All routes up Monte Grappa end at Casa Armata del Grappa E Rifugio Bassano (otherwise known as Rifugio Bassano or Rifugio Bassano a Cima Grappa). The Rifugio Bassano is located just below the Sacrario del Monte Grappa where 22,190 Italian and Austrian soldiers who died on Monte Grappa in WW I are interred.
Rifugio as seen from Sacrario del Monte Grappa
If you are interested in participating in the awesome Brevetto Del Monte Grappa:
1. Here is the 2018 Brevetto Del Monte Grappa Information Page
2. Here is the Brevetto Monte Grappa 2019 booklet
If you intend to complete all 11 climbs in 2018, please do let us follow and track you progress. For those interested in a webpage to track your Brevetto progress (no charge) please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Our Monte Grappa experience: We stayed in Bassano del Grappa which is the largest city around the base of Monte Grappa at Hotel Alla Corte. Hotel Alla Corte is reasonably priced, well maintained, has a great pizza ristorante and staff that speaks english and was exceptionally helpful and willing to help us plan our Monte Grappa climbs, including calling the stamping locations to determine when they were open and available to stamp.
PJAMM’s Itinerary - 6 days to ascend the 11 climbs of the mighty Monte Grappa:
August 27, 2016
Romano / Caupo
69 miles / 111km
10,725’ / 3,270m
Cismon / Seren
67 miles / 108 km
11,490’ / 3,502m
Possagno / Semonzo
44 miles / 71 km
10,650 / 3,246
Fietta / Alano
62 miles / 100 km
12,070’ / 3,679m
Cavaso / Pedrobba
60 miles / 97 km
12,020’ / 3,664m
5.4 miles / 8.7km
3,650’ / 1,113m
307m / 494 km
After spending countless hours plotting and riding the Monte Grappa 11, we believe there are generally 3 zones in which 3 to 5 of the climbs are situated within:
1. Southern Zone: This zone includes Romano D’ezzelino, Crespano del Grappa and Semonzo. These are the 3 most southern of the climbs and begin around the southwestern base of Monte Grappa.
2. Eastern Zone: This zone includes Fietta, Possagno, Cavaso del Tomba Pederobba and Alano. These are the climbs along the southeastern side of the mountain which Alano being a bit of an outlier and the furthest north of the group of 5.
3 caves to ride through on from the east.
3. Northern zone: This zone includes Cismon, Caupo and Seren with Caupo and Seren being the farthest north of the Monte Grappa climbs, situated at the northern base of Monte Grappa while Cismon begins at the western base.
Many Brevetto posters in Rifugio at the finish.
Monte Grappa - History
Monte Grappa is where the Italian army made it’s last stand during World War I and was able to prevent Austrian forces from moving to, conquering and then controlling the Venetian plains. The summit of Monte Grappa became a critical stragic and defensive location of the Italian Army. Several times during the war, the Austrian army attempted to wrest control of Monte Grappa from the Italian army, but were never successful.
The battles for control of Monte Grappa cost many Italian and Austrian soldiers their lives.
11-11 to 12-23-17
Austria: Archduke Eugen
Italy: Armando Diaz
Austria: Arz von Straubenburg
Italy: Armando Diaz
10-24 to 10-28-18
Austria: Arz von Straubenburg
Italy: Armando Diaz
Source of table information: Wikipedia Battle of Monte Grappa
The bodies of 22,190 Italian and Austrian soldiers are interred in the Sacrario del Monte Grappa.
Giro d’Italia History
The Giro has visited Monte Grappa 5 times since 1968. We have attempted to identify each year, stage and winner that involved Monte Grappa, but are not certain about the 1982 race and would appreciate input from anyone with knowledge of the Monte Grappa route that year - PJAMM Giro Spreadsheet.
“THE GIRO D'ITALIA: The Giro has visited Monte Grappa five times. In 2014, the Bassano del Grappa-Cima Grappa time trial finished just below the summit. On three other occasions, the race went over the mountain but did not go all the way to the top (a dead end road). The last of these was in 2010 in the Ferrara-Asolo stage won by Vincenzo Nibali. In 1982 it was in the Comacchio-San Martino di Castrozza stage won by Vincente Belda of Spain. It was on the parcours of the Misurina-Bassano del Grappa stage in 1974, won by Eddy Merckx over Moser and Gimondi. (I purchased a videotape of that Giro, The Greatest Show on Earth, hoping to see some of the action on Monte Grappa, but alas, there was none). The only other time it it finished on the summit was in the Trento-Monte Grappa stage in 1968, won by Emilio Casalini, a gregario (domestique) of Merckx. It is hoped that the Giro will return as part of a stage commemorating World War I.”
GIRO d’ITALIA HISTORY
10 (Romano d’Ezzilino)
16 (Cavaso del Tomba)
THE 11 ASCENTS TO THE MIGHTY MONTE GRAPPAS
Note: The Climbs of Monte Grappa listed below are in the sequence the appear in the Monte Grapp Annual Participants Handbook. An excellent summary entitled Climbing Monte Grappa is found on the Monte Grappa page of Bici Veneto (cycling the Veneto Region) website.
Brevetto del Grappa: As of 2018
“Brevetto del Grappa is a program that awards brevets (certificates) to riders who scale 10 (gold level), 6 (silver level), or 3 (bronze level) of the routes, over the course of the season. To participate, you pay 10 euro and receive a pamphlet which must be dated and stamped in the spaces corresponding to the routes, both at the specified locations at the beginning of the ascents, and at Rifugio Bassano on the summit. Here is the 2016 brochure.” http://www.biciveneto.it/climbingmontegra.html
We designed a Monte Grappa 11 Climbs Jersey and filled in the circle
at the completion of each climb - Climbed Romano d’Ezzelino 8-27-16
Romano d’Ezzelino 8-27-16
Left - Brevetto stamps climbs 1-7 / Right- Brevetto stamps climbs 8-11
GOOD RESOURCES AND LINKS
Italian Outdoors - Good summary of 10 climbs