l'Eroica is this weekend in Tuscany. As many of you know we rode in this event in 2014 and also enjoyed Eroica Primavera in 2015.
Above: Harry & Leather after sampling their first Eroica event
Larry's had a crazy dream since our first experience with the Strade Bianche in Tuscany. After sampling the peaceful quality of these roads he thought why not organize a CycleItalia itinerary to experience the entire Eroica course?
Above: a steep climb on the Eroica Primavera route this past spring
Like many, his first idea was to organize a tour to coincide with the famous event(s), but the big one's not until October while the new Primavera's a bit early for most of our clients, so those ideas were tossed aside.
Next was the issue of epoca-style bicycles. Even if we were to source a supply of these, how many of our clients want to come up with the old-time shoes, or even know how to use clip & strap pedals?
Above: a special Eroica bicycle available from Bianchi
Bianchi's like the one pictured above are now available for sale/rent and we're sure the fleet will be expanded to meet the demand, but Larry's dream has since evolved in a different direction.
How about a week-long tour in Tuscany based on the entire Eroica route? It's about 200 kilometers, though not all of it is dirt, so perhaps 4 days could be devoted to this loop with another day added onto either end to make a full itinerary. Lodging and support would be typical CycleItalia quality and mangia bene would be featured as always.
Slap on the fattest tires your bike will take and bring it with you, or rent one of ours. We'll put some special tires on ours just for this tour. Wear period-correct clothing or your normal cycling attire, we don't care! Use whatever shoes and pedals you like, though we think MTB shoes and pedals work best.
This would not be a mountain bike tour or "gravel-grinding" bike industry-driven fad idea, though if you have a 'cross or "gravel" bike (no MTB's please) it would work well on these roads, but any road bike will do - just as they did back-in-the-days of Coppi and Bartali. The reason to do this is for the experience of amazing peace and quiet while cycling. Hearing the birds chirping, the leaves rustling, the streams gurgling as you pass by is something too rare these days, even on the paved routes CycleItalia so painstakingly designs. There is virtually ZERO auto traffic on these unpaved roads - we know both from cycling and driving on them.
Tuscany's still a magical place but these days too many others are out there enjoying it, so escaping the tourist crowds via the white roads brings one back to Tuscany and cycling "come una volta" (as it once was) in many ways.
If the interest is there (email or post comments here) this tour could happen as early as 2017.
Share your thoughts and ideas - Larry's crazy dream could come true!