Amazing Motorcycle Road: Italy’s Gavia Pass

Amazing Motorcycle Road: Italy’s Gavia Pass

The 9th of September was bittersweet. It was a special day in that it marked Kenny’s 40th birthday. He got to spend the day doing what he loved; riding motorcycles on amazingly twisty roads. Unfortunately, it also marked the last day of riding that we were to do with Pimmie on our vacation. Our day’s ride took us from beautiful Corvara back to where we started our journey together in Bormio.

The Dolomites were spectacular. Between the scenery, the road condition and the weather I couldn’t have imagined anything to top those passes. As we pressed on heading west, it became apparent that we saved what I would say was the most surprising pass of all, for last; The Gavia Pass.

Going up the Gavia Pass

Like Stelvio, I found the Gavia Pass to be most memorable because it was such an anomaly. On the ascent from Ponte di Legno on the southern side of the pass, the roadway that climbs through the trees is a single lane, and a tight one at that. The problem with the single lane is that it has to support 2 way traffic.

The Gavia Pass Italy

It was an eye opener to feel like you barely fit through the road with sidebags on your bike to then have to make room for a car to squeeze by in the other direction. It was kind of scary but exciting at the same time.

Gavia Pass - Photo by Pimmie

Creeping around some of the blind corners closer to the summit I found myself hoping I wouldn’t be face to face with the grill of an oncoming car.

As usual I was the caboose on our three rider train up the pass. I would catch glimpses of Kenny pulled over watching for me every now and then. It was kind of cute – like he was “protecting” me. 🙂

Me - Riding up Gavia Pass - Photo by Pimmie

I found this video on youtube. It gives a pretty good view of how tight the roadway was in the southern section. Imagine trying to squeeze 2 cars through there!

8 Replies to “Amazing Motorcycle Road: Italy’s Gavia Pass”

  1. This looks amazing! I tow a trailer when I travel, so this would probably be off limits to me (plus, uh, getting the trailer from New Mexico to Italy might be tough), but I’m sharing this with my friend who goes to Italy almost every year. He’ll love it.

    1. Thanks, Deonne – I’d love to hear someone else’s impression of what it was like to travel that road. If he does drive/ride it and shares his experience online – please share the link!

  2. As we came out of the wooded area, I came head on with a winnebago-esque camper-type vehicle coming in the opposite direction. On 1 side, a sheer cliff down 1000 ft – on the other, a rock wall. As the truck creeped by, I had to move the bike up against the rock wall, with the sidebags hitting the rocks to JUST fit as the truck came past (with about 2 inches to spare). As I watched the truck fade off in the distance, I wondered what they would do when they got to the wooded section – there is no way it was wide enough to fit the vehicle, and certainly no place to make a u-turn. Likely, he would have to back up quite a while to find some place to turn the truck around. I think he still might be up there.

  3. Reminds me of the single track roads in Scotland, except that the road surface is a lot better. Cannot believe that we have missed this one! At least it gives us an excuse to go back to the area.

  4. Hello Fuzzy, I stumbled into your excellent blog by (happy) accident while planning for a Euro motorcycle trip. Do you think you will be able to help me with the route you took and questions I have regarding renting bikes etc in Europe. If so, that would be much appreciated. You can always PM me on the email I have provided, thanks.

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