MTB tour Pfunderer Joch
Bikers first have to earn their way down the legendary trail from the Pfunderer Joch pass into the Pustertal valley: it's a tough climb. But the effort is worth it twice over. Firstly because of the wonderful view of the Pustertal Dolomites and secondly because of the marvellous descent.
The almost 2,600 metre high Pfunderer Joch between the Pfitscher and Pfunderer valleys in South Tyrol is a popular part of multi-day Alpine crossings. From Sterzing, it can also be tackled in a one- or two-day tour, depending on your fitness level. However, if you want to split up the tour, you will need to bring a little spirit of adventure or a tent or sleeping bag, as there is no overnight accommodation apart from a few unmanaged mountain huts.
Starting point of the tour
Wiesen near Sterzing
Destination of the tour
Wiesen near Sterzing
The 78 km long tour starts in Wiesen near Sterzing. From here, the route is initially quite leisurely on a tarmac road to Tulver and past the Rieder Stausee reservoir to Fussendrass, where you turn off towards Pfunderer Joch (signpost 17, then 17a). There the gravel and meadow path becomes noticeably more strenuous and remains consistently steep for a good 1,200 metres in altitude.
Above the tree line, when the pass already seems within reach, even extremely fit cyclists have to pedal hard again - or dismount and push and enjoy the landscape for longer. What comes next, however, makes up for any discomfort: a fairly gentle, flowing trail that leads from the Pfunderer Joch down around 1,000 metres in altitude.
Shortly above the tree line, you come to a somewhat more challenging steep slope, which eventually turns into a gravel path. This takes you to Pfunders, Vintl and into the Pustertal valley, continuing on the cycle path to Mühlbach, Schabs and Franzensfeste. There you can change to the train or cycle back to Sterzing via the Eisack Valley cycle path.
17, 17a, 20, 19
Mountain bike, helmet, wind and rain protection, sunglasses, air pump, possibly tent and sleeping bag for overnight stay
Trains stop at Sterzing railway station
Brenner motorway A22, exit Sterzing, direction Wiesen east of Sterzing at the entrance to the Pfitschertal valley
On the outskirts of Wiesen near Sterzing
Type of trail
Length 78.2 km
Editorial office south-tirol.com