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Monte Grappa: SP141 near jct with SP140(sh)

This shoulder point consists of alternate Monte Grappa approaches, merging ~800ft below the summit. Parts of this route on the eastern approach are very narrow and are posted with "closed" signs, that have been a kind of permanent fixture in the last years. But you can get through on a bicycle. Other parts on SP140 are extremely steep.

1.START-END EAST:profile turns left off SP26, east of Sant Eulalia
2.Crespano del Grappa
3.jct with road up Via San Liberale, profile stays right
4.jct with road down on right
5.intermediate high point below Cima Della Mandria
6.TOP, high point immediately before jct with SP140, 4987ft
7.start of last 20 switchbacks down to Semonzo


From East.
Quaeldich.de has this approach going to Cima Mandria, which is a rounded knoll, less than 100ft above the road summit. But the other side decends less than 500ft before climbing to a higher point on the other side. For this reason I won't call this a summit in these pages.

But back to the bottom. Actually the turnoff on the west side of Crespano del Grappa is really not obscure at all. Coming from the north I was just too anxious to start going up some not so clearly signed paved roads, that all dead ended. The right road has a sign directed at cyclists ( but only the turnoff, and then quite a ways up) with the name Grappa amongst others. This sign includes extraordinarily, intimidating average grade information about the road ahead. All this information did not keep me from taking yet another wrong turn and do more extra out-and-back climbing at the next round-about.

This climb consists of very steep switchbacks in the forest. First - the long ones, separated by 7 or 8 ramps, then the short ones, about 17 of them, divided into 2 groups by a straight section. I walked a good portion of these - very steep, or maybe they seemed steeper after the initial work.

The last switchbacks emerge above treeline. In my case one last ray of sunshine illuminated the gravel braids of the Piave Delta. Dark clouds were below my own elevation, and the limestone patterns of the Grappa slopes were truncated by grey. At the next junction you can also make a loop by going back down towards the right. This point actually comes juts before the designated "Cime Mandria". Do taking a right here does not actually reach the Cime Mandria, and going straight you don't drop 100 meters before climbing to a higher point.

So far I had seen one car on this climb - admittedly a light traffic day, a day when it was supposed to rain, and had not yet started. Above here the road is so narrow, that it appears like a bike path, and those were the only vehicles I saw. A small descend leads to a small climb to another gap, all above treeline. scenery obscured by clouds, and mellow climbing to a summit point just before the road meets up with SP140. This part includes the closed section, which includes several tunnels (maybe 4 or 5 - at this point I was too wet to count accurately to 4) along a shelf road section in the woods.

From West: (described downwards) There are more notes on this approach on the SP140-SP148 Cima del Grappa s(u) page. Just this much here: It always amazes me ("always" referring to the 2 times I have experienced this) After a long screaming decent Borso del Grapp comes into view, and after all this fierce decenting,  Borso is still far below like a carpet made of little square patterns. The sign announces the 20th of 20 upcoming switchbacks, in a long count down before the landing. The road is wider now, and cars exist, quantity depending upon weather, day of the week and season. But in my experience it is still much lighter than anything west of the Brenta Gorge (and also much closer to Bassano del Grappa).



Dayride with this point as highest summit


( < Monte Grappa jct SP148-SP140 | Monte Di Ragogna > )

Monte Grappa jct SP141-SP140(sh) : Romano D'Ezzelino > Crespano del Grappa with several miles and ~1700ft climbing detours due to wrong turns > Fieta > up Via San Andrea > SP141 south > Monte Grappa SP141-SP140(sh) > down SP140 > Semonzo del Grappa > back to starting point in Romano D'Ezzelino : 34.4miles with 5930ft of climbing in 4:39hrs (garmin etrex30 r5:21.10.4)
Notes: a late start on a day when it was supposed to rain all day. But instead the weather held for a while, and then deteriorated much later than prognosticated, which seems to be a habit here this year. Light to medium rain started near the Cima Mandria area. -I fell on one of the switchbacks down to Semonzo, due to a slipping front tire. This is at least the second time that a helmet probably helped me escape a serious injury.