If only the route was the elevation profile, this would be another classic downhill stage: but sadly it’s not. As soon as you see that all too familiar steeply undulating profile, you’re thinking “water”. Today the rivers are the Suyelga at eight miles, the Shumbut at ten miles, the Shumbut again at fourteen miles and the Bersut at twenty three miles. Between the rivers, you’re either going up or down for this is a stage with no flat roads.
The rollout from Bol’shie Nyrsiis goes uphill for five miles as the M77 enters the forest. The hill peaks at the junction to the Kukeyevo and Yamashevo to the south. Then it’s down through the forest to the first river crossing before the road hangs to the left at the junction to Ivanayevo at eight miles: by the time the road passes by Alan-Polyan at nine miles, you’re already up the other side and ready to dive back down to Tavlarova at ten miles: the climbs just keep on coming.
The ascent away from the first crossing of the Shumbut is quite severe, peaking in another forest at the yellow kite at twelve miles. That’s followed by the descent to the second crossing of the Shumbut between Bol’shoy Mashlyak to the north and Bikchurayevo to the south. That’s at fourteen miles. You then take on the longest climb of the stage, a four mile hike that peaks in the middle of another forest at eighteen miles, and that’s followed by an equally long descent down to Katmyshskoy and the crossing of the Bersut a mile from the finish.
There have been many uphill finishes of late so don’t be surprised because here comes another one: the final mile climbs a hundred feet on a long left hander as it approaches the finishing line at Nizhnyaya.
Distance: 24 miles / 38 kilometres
Ascent: 574 feet / 175 metres
RGT Magic Road: 1ClHS4dglklD
Max elevation: 600 ft
Min elevation: 368 ft
Total climbing: 574 ft
Total descent: -618 ft
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