Swiss road biking

after work ride

Zürich is a bit of a paradise for road biking, on either side of the lake there is a long, small but steep ridge of hills that you can zig-zag up and down for lots of 10-15 minute climbs. The roads are silky smooth and overlook the lake and the Alps. There is something pure and simple about riding uphill on a roadbike, especially if the climb is long and you have to attack out of the saddle around every corner because its so steep. I can combine a few of these hills for an after work loop of less than 2 hours but getting well over 1000m climbing.

Of course the descents are the best part, completely pothole free swooping hairpin bends, some open and flowing where you can pedal flat out to hit 60 or 70 kmph, others incredibly tight and technical with huge drops off the edge meaning mistakes could be lethal. It’s amazing to ride them as fast as possible, tucked on the drops, minimal brakes, hanging off the side of the bike willing it to go around the corner and hoping like mad your skinny tyres won’t give way.

roads above Zürich

For longer rides there are Alpine passes within riding distance of the city. Similarly insane roads except climbs and descents go on for 10 or 15km and the surrounding scenery gets more dramatic. I’ve ridden the local ones (at first surrounded by skiers and 2m of snow), but in the next few weeks the really hardcore passes will open up so there is more exploring to be done. There’s signpost for the Gotthard at the bottom of my street that’s been tempting me all winter…

road to Schweiz

The weather is starting to get really hot (when it’s not torrentially raining) and now that its ‘cycling season’ there are roadies everywhere. Seasonal cyclists mean I’ve never seen so much blinged out carbon moving so slowly but there are also plenty of really fast people with lots of top pros based in the area and turning up on local group rides. Strava also adds a whole new dimension to road riding, I’m trying to convert the world – get on it!

It’s actually highly dangerous, I’m a mountain biker, I really shouldn’t be this enthusiastic about road biking!

Greifensee, Zürich

Spring evening ride

silky smooth roads

view above my house

after work ride

chilling after a ride

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