The Basel messenger family warmly welcomes you to a wonderful weekend and invites you to join us in crossing the alps from Basel to Milano.
We will be organizing a thrill and fun filled schedule for you from Friday evening to Sunday morning. Of course there will be an alleycat, funny games, an awesome party, great food and a couple of surprises! We’ll be updating this space with more information.
FROM MAY 22th – MAY 28th 2015 //
PRE EVENT BASILEA – MAY 22th – MAY 24th
GROURPRIDE BASILEA > ZÜRICH > LUZERN > GOTTARDO > LOCARNO > MILANO – MAY 25th – MAY 28th
The Gotthard Pass
The Gotthard Pass has been one of the most important trading routes along the north-south-axis in Europe since the middle ages. For a long time, it was the only connection between the German-speaking part of Switzerland and the Italian-speaking canton of Ticino and Italy. The old pass road Tremol still exists to this day on the south side of the mountain. Today, this ancient cobblestone road winds steeply up the mountain and is almost exclusively used by cyclists and the old postal service stagecoach.
The pass will be a real challenge for every participant and as such requires a high standard of physical fitness. After scaling 1,700m of elevation in 40km, the pass itself lies on an elevation of 2,106m. Even at the end of May, it’s very possible that two meter high walls of snow will be lining the roads on each side. Make no mistake, it will be cold. Where the sun doesn’t reach, it will be very cold indeed. As tested by Pavian, Armin and Daniel, it is possible to ride the pass in a fixed gear, but it’s recommended to not exceed a 48:17 gear ratio. It’s advised to bring along a 19 or 20 tooth cog.
The Gotthard isn’t just a mountain or a pass though: For most Swiss people it’s a symbol. In the late 19th century a 15km long rail tunnel was driven through the hard granite. To achieve this amazing feat of engineering, thousands of Italian guest workers were recruited from the poor parts of North Italy to toil away in the tunnels day and night under miserable conditions. These Tschinggen, as the Italians were disdainfully called, established themselves as guest workers and immigrated into Switzerland in the thousands. Here, they were treated badly and discriminated against for decades. Today, this Italian influence has left lasting impressions on Swiss culture and culinary traditions and many Italians have found a home in Switzerland. I’d say that’s as good a reason as any to join our Italian friends by crossing the Gotthard from Switzerland and have a great time with them and everybody else at the ECMC Milano! And if we’re lucky, there will be loads of delicious Pasta waiting for us.
facts and figures:
- around 400km in 5 days
- lodging either in your own tent or in provided dormitories
- support vehicle for emergencies
- luggage can be transported in the support vehicle
- ride in one of two performance level groups or alone
- daily breakfast, lunch and dinner