Passo di Pénnes, Penser Joch (SS508) Patrick Hot
Written by Patrick     September 04, 2012    
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Passeggiata Sant'Osvaldo, 39100 Bolzano, South Tyrol, Italy, Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol

Via Giovo, 39049 Sterzing, South Tyrol, Italy, Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol


Passeggiata Sant'Osvaldo, 39100 Bolzano, South Tyrol, Italy

General Route

Route Type
(Partial) toll road
This road may be seasonally closed
Passo di Pénnes is a 2211 meter pass in South Tyrol, northern Italy, near the Jaufenpass. It connects Bolzanovia the Sarntal and with Sterzing in the Wipptal. It is the most direct road between Innsbruck and Bolzano for those who do not want to take the Austostrada. This route can be ridden either way, but it is best to ride the Passo di Pénnes from the south, in the morning if possible where the sun stand is low and the shadows transform the valley into a high-contrast picture scenery. If you take the route from Bolzano, you will pass the famous Runkelstein castle, which sits on a steep rock in the middle of the canyon entry in a rocky landscape.
The road follows north the Torrente river in hundreds of curves and interspersed with rock tunnels up to the summit. From here the road continues valley upward until you reach a high alpine plateau.. Approaching the village Sarntheim (ital. Sarentino) the valley opens up to a another small plateau. This country side is almost barren. At the end of the Sarntal valley, the pass road takes a light right curve and bends into the Pensertal valley where it gains now above the timber line at height. The road surface is supurb, the curves clear and even the hairpins are easy. This is what riding a bike is all about!
At the summit there is restaurant/guest house that offers local specialities at fair prices and you can enjoy a superb views back down Pensertal valley and the Eisacktal valley on the north. Most of the north ramp down to Vipiteno is tree lined with good surface with a fair number of overtaking opportunities. At Vipiteno you can head left either across the Jaufenpass or the Brennero pass, or take a right into the Eisacktal back to Bolzano or take a left down the road in the Eisacktal valley at Waidbruck towards the central Dolomites. Decisions, decisions! We rate this an easy route.

Editor review

Why take the Autostrada when you can ride this.
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Patrick Reviewed by Patrick September 04, 2012
Last updated: September 26, 2012
#1 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (15)

Passo di Pennes

Why take the Autostrada when you can ride this.

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