The Hills are Alive...
Following JH's route number 46 - it was supposed to be a nice 85km loop - turns out you have to read the small print. 200+kms later I realised he had drawn the map for the longer route, but described the shorter route - which was GRAVEL!
Total Fail JH!
Regardless, it was an excellent day.
Sun shining, roads dry, mountains high and valleys low.
The road that follows the lake is chocka block full of tourists and it's a 50k zone most of the way. There are some pretty groovy tunnels though - some well lit and some in complete darkness - not even high beam lights could show me the road properly. Interesting trying to balance a bike in complete darkness. Try it sometime - shut your eyes and try to remain upright.
I detoured up to Pieve to check out the view. Hotel Paradiso has a balcony that juts out over the 1000ft drop. Very cool. Took a long detour back down to the lake along wonderful forested tracks. Barely any traffic at all and this part was just a delight.
The next part across the mountain to Idro was tough. Yes it was twisty but it was tight, blind corners on a one lane track and this is just really hard work on the arms and brakes. Constantly creeping around corners and hardly getting above 20k/h.
Storo back to Riva was pure magic. Long sweeping corners with great surface and a few hairpins just to keep it interesting. There are tons of mountain bikers around these parts and the really mad ones like to surprise you in the middle of hairpins by overtaking you on the inside. I must learn how to swear in Italian.