Topbike Tours - European Cycling Holiday Specialists

David Olle and Emma Colson

An Australian company, Topbike has a fully equipped European base and its own fleet of high quality hire bikes and E-bikes.

We specialise in quality cycling tours with small groups and are famous for looking after our clients.

+61 415 866 061 (mobile)
PO Box 1717 Collingwood VIC 3066 AUSTRALIA
holiday@topbike.com.au
- SINCE 1997 -

Base Tour: Tuscany
Tuscan Training Camp 'EAT-DRINK-RIDE'

Pracchia (via Pistoia), Tuscany
June 24-30 2020

From our Topbike base town in the Apennine Ranges, Tuscany we’ll do the climbs of Corno Alle Scale, Abetone, which are ski resorts as well as the highest point in the northern Apennines, Monte Cimone. Smaller peaks are reached at Passo Oppio, Prunetta, La Collina, San Momme, Granaglione et al. We ride forested mountain passes, river valleys and quiet switch-back back roads even the locals don’t know about.

The Tuscan Training Camp ‘Base Tour’ is 7 days (6 nights) fully supported, off the tourist route around our staff’s base town in the Apennine Ranges, in the regions of Tuscany and Emiliglia Romagna. Our rides will vary from between 60km and 140km, all starting and finishing in our ‘base’ town of Pracchia*.

*The mountain town of Pracchia, situated in the Italian Province of Pistoia, Tuscany, (approximately 60k from Florence and 80k from Bologna) is one of Topbike’s European HQ.

Base Tour: Tuscan Training Camp - Pracchia (via Pistoia), Tuscany Italy June 24-30 2020

2020 Tour Dates

Base Tour: Tuscany
Tuscan Training Camp
- 'Eat-Drink-Ride'
--
| June 24-30 2020

Topbike’s Tuscan Training Camp Base Tour uses an excellent accommodation hotel, and we’ll dine well in-house and visit local and traditional restaurants around the area. Deep, local knowledge that our Topbike staff have of the region is put to good use here. Plenty of great coffee and gelato to be enjoyed en route too.


NB: there are many other climbs available, on demand. Just ask!

2020 Tour Price: $3550 (AUD) (Per person)
[Places are limited to 13 clients in total (with 3 staff).]

Rides will average 60-120k along with >1000m vertical, per day.

TOUR HIGHLIGHTS:

If we do everything planned, we’ll have climbed around 8.500 metres vertically, over 10 different mountain passes.

Although this Camp may not be as ‘kilometre heavy’ as other Topbike Base Camps, it is the combination of the total climbing hours and the repeat days of climbing that will make your legs feel like you’ve worked hard and give you a significant increase in your fitness.

Also worth noting is that there is virtually no car time, as we use the vehicle for back up, and carrying our spare clothing etc. only.

7 Days/6 Nights
June 24–30 2020+ *
  • Destination

  • Tour Start / Finish

    Pistoia - Pistoia
  • Pick Up

    June 24 2020 | 11.00am Pistoia Railway Station
  • Drop Off

    June 30 2020 | 11.00am Pistoia Railway Station
  • Cycling Fitness/Experience

    Recommended: minimum 10 hrs/week + E-Bikes Available
1

Wednesday 24 June 2020: Day 1 | Pistoia

11am: Pick up at Pistoia Railway Station, (Pistoia)
We'll meet at Pistoia Railway Station before transferring in the Topbike air conditioned mini-bus to Pracchia (28k, 45mins). After assembling bikes, we’ll take in an orientation ride, heading up the Reno Valley and ascending to historical, medieval hilltop towns of Maresca and Gavinana, where we’ll stop for a warm-up coffee or gelato. At 30k and ~500m of vertical ascent, it’s a perfect warm up.

Accommodation

Hotel in the centre of town - 6 nights

Dining

For the duration of the tour we will stay in a hotel in the centre of town, dining in-house 3 nights and at different local ristorantes the other three nights.

Ride: 30km loop, flattish by the lake, >500m vertical

Terrain: Just the little Passo Oppio – 2km at ~5% - to clean out the cobwebs.

2

Thursday 25 June 2020: Day 2 |

A lap of the Montagna Pistoiese is the plan for today. We start by heading up the valley and over the Passo Oppio again, then dropping down to San Marcello Pistoiese, a medieval town of note, where a coffee and pastry may be required.
San Marcelo Pistoiese - medieval town, Tuscany
San Marcelo Pistoiese
Continuing downhill, we glimpse the pretty valley of the Lima River but take a sharp left turn and climb through a birch and oak forest to Prunetta, spotting ancient campanili (bell-towers) on the way. It’s downhill all the way home.

Dining

Local ristorante

Ride: 46km loop, 2 climbs > 1000m vertical.

First climb 2km long, second climb 15km

3

Friday 26 June 2020: Day 3 |

We leave the serenity of verdant mountains today and drop down the metropolis of Pistoia. We’ll probably drop in to a local bar for a bombolone – Italian donut fuel for our upcoming climbs. From Pistoia we first tackle the difficult Sanmomme climb known as ‘Little Stelvio’ (6km, 8% max.14%) and then continue climbing to La Collina (12.4km, 5.2%). A scenic, gentle valley ride follows, crossing the border into Emiglia Romagna and into the town of Ponte della Venturina. Here we have a choice to ride an additional 30km loop passing Lago di Suviana and Castel di Casio (extra 2 climbs of 4km 6.2% & 4.4km, 4.6%). Either way, the false flat up the Reno valley brings us home.

Dining

Dinner Local ristorante

Ride: > 70km loop (with option to add 30km loop),, > 1600m vertical asc. (with option to add < 700m vertical ascent.

Terrain: Two climbs of significance, including one steep one first with switch backs.

4

Saturday 27 June 2020: Day 4 |

The day to climb to our first ski field summit has arrived. There is a fair warm up, commencing with a 15 km gentle downhill run to Porretta Terme, leaving Tuscany behind again and into the region of Emilia Romagna. We see our destination rise above the agricultural landscape – an impressive mountain that may seem a little daunting, but we steadily climb toward the summit of Corno Alle Scale (27km, 5%). While most is ‘pedalabile’, it’s the final 5km which is really taxing. That section averages over 8%, with 1.5km above 12% and a maximum of 15%. We arrive at 1471m above sea level and then cruise back down, trying not to think about the final 20km drag uphill (280m vertical) to get home!

Dining

Local ristorante

Ride: 96km out and back, < 1700m vertical asc.

5

Sunday 28 June 2020: Day 5 |

Recovery, with a kicker. We head off north on the main road, then turn onto a ‘goat track’ (sealed) and climb steeply up to the small mountain villages of Case Boni, Sambucedro, Granaglione, Lustrola and Borgo Capanne. With their beautiful stone churches and houses and the outlook to the forested mountain ridge opposite and pastural land down the valley, there is enough reward to justify the pinches we have to climb. We’ll drop into Porretta for coffee before heading home.

Dining

Local Restaurant.

Ride: < 45km loop, > 7500m vertical.

Terrain:One scenic climb, that peaks at 900m.

6

Monday 29 June 2020: Day 6 |

It’s our biggest day today. We ride to the Lima valley and after 17km we hit the first climb to the Tuscan’s ski resort of choice, Abetone (16.8km, 5.2%). Crossing the border, we take on beautiful roads of Emilia to descend to the base of our second climb. We start that climb 54km into the day at 578m ASL and climb to the summit of Passo del Lupo (Monte Cimone) at 1441m ASL (22km, 3.9%). It’s a tough climb, with pinches above 13% to keep us all honest. After descending to Fanano, there’s the small matter of the hill to Viticiatico (8.4km, 3.7%). We then drop into Porretta, where serious refreshments might be required, before the final drag to home (20.4km, 1.4%).

Dining

Local Ristorante

Ride: < 145km, > 2900m vertical

Terrain: Three scenic climbs, with the second one being the most significant. You’ll really feel the third climb after the first two climbs, and having ridden 100km to its base.

7

Tuesday 30 June 2020: Day 7 | Pack-up Day 'Arrivederci!'

Pack up day, after breakfast. Drop off point will be Pistoia Rail Station, by 11am.
Highlights: If we do everything planned, we'll have climbed around 8,5000 vertical metres, over 10 different mountain passes.
NB: there are many other climbs available, on demand. Just ask!
Although this Camp may not be as ‘kilometre heavy’ as other Topbike Base Camps, it is the combination of the total climbing hours and the repeat days of climbing that will make your legs feel like you’ve worked hard and give you a significant increase in your fitness.
Also worth noting is that there is virtually no car time, as we use the vehicle for back up, and carrying our spare clothing etc. only. So after enjoying breakfast together, for all of those not staying on, it's pack-up time, and off to further destinations, arrivederci!

BASE TOUR: Tuscan Training Camp 2020 | June 24-30 2020 Pracchia (via Pistoia), Tuscany

This Topbike ‘Base’ tour is 7 days (6 nights) fully supported, off the tourist route around our staff’s base town in the Apennine Ranges, in the regions of Tuscany and Emiliglia Romagna. It’s approximately 60k from Florence and 80k from Bologna. We’ll ride up to 140k a day (but not every day), starting and finishing in the town of Pracchia.