The Gravel bike is suitable for pedaling on “white roads”.
It is a perfect compromise between the road bike, for the frame, the handlebar and the diameter of the wheels, the mountainbike (the tessellated design of the tires and some characteristics of the components are similar) and the historical bikes, of which it often copies the construction material, geometries and driveability.
HOW IT WORKS
The conformation of the gravel bike allows you to spend many hours on your bike on itineraries with mixed path (road and offroad) thanks also to the stability and ability to adapt to the terrain of the mountain bike. Add to this the agility and driving comfort typical of road bikes.
The gravel bike therefore represents the meeting point between the world of road riders who want to ride off-roads, without using a MTB, and bikers who wish to extend their rides without being forced to use a racing bike.
The gravel bike is not a mtb. When the trail becomes technical, the rigid fork, the racing bend and the riding position are really hard to tolerate, transforming some very simple steps with a mtb, into an impossible challenge.
But, with some technical precautions, it can also be safely used to face single tracks and technical sections, both rise and downhill, obviously adapting speed and driving style compared to what you would do in Mtb.
Ultimately, we can consider gravel bikes a perfect travel bike. Gravel bike trips are becoming very popular, thanks to the fact that this type of bike gives the possibility to travel on mixed terrain and therefore reach destinations that could not be reached with a racing bike or a mtb.
WHEN and WHERE to GO
For a daily excursion, a weekend, or a trip, the gravel bike is ideal both on white roads (for which it was born), and on asphalt or off-roads.
This is why it can be used all year round and for many different routes.
Here we give you just a few ideas.
Choose specialized guides who will take you on dedicated trails, tailored for you, with enough variety and points of interest, to allow you to fully immerse in the gravel experience.
Then let yourself go, lower your head in the queue of those who ride in front of you downhill and you will see that the adrenaline level will increase quickly.
- The villages of Fermo, in the Marche region (Italy), and the surrounding area, offer a cycling itinerary with perfect characteristics for gravel. A challenging route, with gradients of up to 20% and descents that require extreme attention, with the possibility of shortening the route and lightening it a little.
- The Valle dell’Aso, in the Marche region too, offers a decidedly challenging itinerary from the coast of Pedaso to the hilly area of Montalto, passing through various characteristic medieval villages. The route includes several short but very demanding climbs, with very steep ramps.
- Andalusia, from Granada to Seville: five-stage tour from Granada to Seville, passing through Córdoba and other wonderful places in Andalusia.
- Camino de Santiago: the French Way and the Camino da Leòn. From here to Santiago, pilgrims can obtain the Compostela, a diploma that certifies the completion of at least 200 kilometers by bike to the Sanctuary.
- Basel Strasbourg: a journey through history and three state borders: Switzerland, Germany and France. The Rhine Valley, the Alps and the Vosges mountains, delightful and picturesque villages, the Alsace Wine Route, will make you pedal giving you the feeling that here time has stopped in the Middle Ages.
DOCUMENTS AND REQUIREMENTS
For gravel bikes and mountain bikes, the more technical conditions become complicated, the more are required competence, expertise and ability to manage a vehicle that has to deal with those extra difficulties, that are quintessence of the off-road bike that make mountain biking so challenging and daring. We are talking about white roads, slippery or muddy surfaces, stones and all situations that, if you are not able to manage them, stiffen and complicate things. But if you know how to deal with them in the right way they allow you to enjoy the experience and have fun like never before.
RECOMMENDED CLOTHING and EQUIPMENT
In gravel there isn’t a real “dress code”.
We suggest mountain bike shoes and baggy shorts.
Since the gravel is designed for long distances, which often leads to camping on a bike, the ability to transport loads, such as spare parts, liquids and clothing, is essential.