Romania-Transfagarasan-Curtea de Arges to Cartisoara
This is the famous high pass that cyclists are challenged to accomplish. It is a daunting route and truly amazing. There is lodging in Arefu, Cetatea Poenari, and at the south end of Balea Lake just before the switchback ascent to the top of the pass. There are tourist stands and food at the top of the pass (Balea Lac). Also lodging in Cartisoara and vicinity. We spent the first night at the lodge in the photo at Cetatea Poenari before starting the big climb to the lake. The 30 miles on the East side around Balea Lake are completely in the woods. There are no views of the lake. Only views are at the dam on the north end. Paving is variable from smooth to wobbly. It is very hilly and curvy. Traffic was minimal. We did not ride the west side as we presumed it to be bad gravel. Cannot confirm this. The final ascent up the switchbacks to the pass is thrilling. There are gradients up to 10% but not for long stretches. The pass at Balea Lac is blocked with stands selling everything you might want. A bit like entering Disneyland!. The desent down the north side of the pass is smooth paving and absolute fun. Views, even through the clouds, on both sides of the pass are worth the effort. Enjoy.
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