There are many routes that take you across the Alps, though most require a serious amount of effort. The Marvin Route, however, taking you from Kochelsee to Lake Garda, is a little different: It offers all of the epic moments to be had on a true Alpine cross, without the persistent thigh-thumping inclines that can often prove too much of a challenge. That being said, the Marvin Route is also not one for the faint of heart, being more demanding than the beginner’s route via Claudia Augusta—you just don’t necessarily need to be a pro.
Staring in Germany, the Marvin Route takes you across to Austria and into Italy over a seven-stage, week long journey. And just like on the classic routes, many of this Tour’s Highlights will hit you unawares, such as the the Innsbrucker Almenweg, the Brenner Grenzkammstraße with the 1er Trail to Gossensass, the Rinner Sattel at the Jaufenpass, the "Rankipino" MTB Trail and a part of the Dolomiti Brenta Bike Trail. On the Marvin, however, you’ll be physically fit enough to enjoy them.
On this route, you’ll be able to enjoy the beauty of the Alps and the surrounding nature to the fullest extent possible. Unlike many crossings, you’ll bypass many of the classic complaints cyclists voice whilst Touring, such as busy pass roads, overcrowded mountain huts and trails that are a little too popular. And, thanks to the lower altitude, the roads stay open from early in the year until well into autumn, being some of the last to receive a blanket of snow, yet the first to be cleared of it when it arrives.
Despite being less demanding that other crossings, however, you must remember that you’re still in the Alps—a certain amount of challenging terrain is to be expected; something you’ll underestimate at your peril. So, be sensible, arrive in shape and be prepared to test your cycling ability. If you master that simple equation, this route will reward you with some of the most incredible experiences you’ll ever have on two wheels.
This is a prelude to measure. Right on the first day of the crossing of the Alps from Lake Kochel to Lake Garda, things really get down to business and you can really sweat on the 76 kilometers and 1,200 vertical meters.In general, water will be your constant companion on this leg - curl up on the Kochelsee, roll along the Walchensee, enjoy biking along the Isar and roll out at the Inn. Magnificent mountain panoramas and a varied landscape, garnished with a few meters of altitude, make up the first leg.Arriving in the lively Inn Valley, you end the first day and rest for the second stage.
After a restful night in the Inn Valley, you will start rested in the second leg of your Alpine crossing. In today's roadbook are less miles than yesterday, but even today it remains sporty.First you leave the Inn Valley and climb the heights of the Innsbruck alpine trail. Up there you will find several opportunities to stop and enjoy the beautiful panorama. Also a few Singltrails wait there for you. Especially nice is the descent into the Stubaital. If you are not on trails, you can ski on a simple forest road.Arriving in the Stubai Valley is far from over. Once again it means clenching teeth, because there are still about 700 meters to climb up to the Serles. With the Serlesbahn you can save a few grains and relax towards the end of the stage.In the monastery Maria Waldrast is the end for today and you can put your feet up in the tranquility of the monastery.
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Big mountain cinema paired with fast downhill action - that's what a perfect bike day has to look like. Even today, a hammer day awaits you again - both from the driving performance, as well as from the highlights.Right at the beginning you can prove your driving technique on the Trinsersteig. In the ascent to Sattelberg Alm and beyond, your stamina is needed.
The reward for the exertions on today's third stage is the ride on the old military road at the Brenner Border Ridge and the following descent on the 1er hiking trail to Gossensass.In Vipiteno you can end the day in the South Tyrolean atmosphere.
With the Rinnersattel you have today a rather unknown passport on the agenda. It is located in close proximity to the famous Jaufenpass. This would possibly be the bad weather alternative. Of course, the Rinner saddle is much more beautiful and interesting for a true mountain biker.Even a real trail highlight will be served today. The descent from the pass is done on a great singletrack, which in between always challenges your skills.After a quick downhill through the Waltener Tal towards St. Leonhard in Passeier. From here you follow the river on the well-developed bike path through the beautiful Passeiertal. Here you will cross several apple orchards, for which the region is so famous.Finally, you arrive in Merano, where the stage ends today.
It goes on to the south. On the fifth stage you leave South Tyrol and come to the province of Trento. This is reflected in the Italian flair in the small towns that you are going through today.From Meran it is initially steep towards Gampenpass. But on the pass road, you just put back a little bit. Soon you leave the asphalt again and change to the Rankipino Cycle Route, a signposted mountain bike route. The runs on lonely paths above the valley and there are in between beautiful opportunities for promising breaks.In Cles in the Val di Non, on Lake Santa Giustina, is the end for today.
Only two days separate you from your big destination, Lake Garda. And today you come a good deal closer to the Lago.You bypass the Brenta Dolomites to the east. This leaves big climbs, but still this stage is demanding.From the Val di Non on the eastern part of the Dolomiti Brenta Bike Route, you will drive over the high-lying village of Andalo and the beautiful Lake Molveno. The destination for today is Comano, from where it's almost a stone's throw to Lake Garda.Refreshments are rarely sown on this route, so cover yourself well with water and snacks before the start. Only in Andalo you have the opportunity to stop off or to shop.
Lake Garda is close enough to touch, but you can reach the lake today via a rather untypical path for alpine crossers. Neither over the Passo del Ballino, nor through the Sarca Valley leads you this route.On the way up to Monte Casale you have to overcome another 1,000 meters. You will be rewarded with a fantastic all-round view that is second to none.And even the typical Lake Garda trails down to the lake make this last stage again a special experience. But you should be careful here and have a good driving technique.In Arco, you will finally find yourself on the bike path on the Sarca and relax in front of your big destination, the Lago di Garda.The bath in the lake, a pizza and the finisher beer you have earned honestly - bravissimo!