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Old May 18th, 2016, 01:02 AM   #3061
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I've used my Dutch card in France and Italy with more digit spaces for PIN, no problem, press enter after typing.
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Old May 20th, 2016, 08:14 PM   #3062
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The Gotthard Pass has been reopened today, photos here: http://www.cdt.ch/ticino/cantone/155...l-san-gottardo
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Old May 20th, 2016, 08:33 PM   #3063
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Seems like an average opening for a 2000+ m mountain pass, right? Most open in May or early June, depending on snow and avalanche conditions.
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Old May 20th, 2016, 09:31 PM   #3064
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It's the average time for the Gotthard. Altitude doesn't count, but avalanche risk does. The Lukmanier is not much lower but it is usually always open, because there is no (not much) risk of avalanches (but it is closed to vehicles heavier than 3,5 t in winter). And the Julier and Bernina are higher, but always open.

The last ones are usually Nufenen, Grimsel and Susten, where it might snow also late (even in July, but not much).

Alternatives also matter. Usually if there is a road tunnel or a train shuttle, there is less pressure to open it early.
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Old May 22nd, 2016, 09:49 AM   #3065
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While we're at it:
On the Albula pass road two cars were buried by avalanches yesterday.

http://www.tagesanzeiger.ch/panorama...story/15386958
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Old May 22nd, 2016, 10:40 AM   #3066
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Umbrail pass, which is the highest of them all in Switzerland, is also now open. I'm hoping to drive over it to Bormio next weekend.
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Old May 22nd, 2016, 11:54 AM   #3067
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunfuns View Post
Umbrail pass, which is the highest of them all in Switzerland, is also now open. I'm hoping to drive over it to Bormio next weekend.
Passo Stelvio is still closed though.
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Old May 22nd, 2016, 12:31 PM   #3068
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Quote:
Originally Posted by g.spinoza View Post
Passo Stelvio is still closed though.
I know, but it should be possible to reach Bormio without going to the top of Stelvio pass which is even higher. Otherwise it would be pointless to open Umbrail since there is nowhere else to drive to on that road.
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Old May 22nd, 2016, 02:00 PM   #3069
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Not sure, AFAIR the winter closure of Stelvio is just above Bagni di Bormio, way before the junction with Umbrail.
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Old May 22nd, 2016, 02:33 PM   #3070
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If that's the case we'll have to go via Livigno instead. Hopefully there will be some way to find out beforehand...
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Old May 22nd, 2016, 06:00 PM   #3071
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunfuns View Post
If that's the case we'll have to go via Livigno instead. Hopefully there will be some way to find out beforehand...
I will post the news as soon as I got it.
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Old May 22nd, 2016, 11:31 PM   #3072
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The short northbound Stalvedro tunnel (~310 m) is being widened so to have a shoulder lane. I don't know if it is wide as a normal one, or if it is narrower like shoulder lanes. It is the last tunnel before the Gotthard coming from the south.

There are many nice spots to photograph the A2 from the train, if you are quick enough to shot at the right moment (and if you are lucky, you might find one of the rare trains with openable windows).

https://map.geo.admin.ch/?topic=ech&...003.00&zoom=11





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Old May 24th, 2016, 02:07 PM   #3073
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunfuns View Post
If that's the case we'll have to go via Livigno instead. Hopefully there will be some way to find out beforehand...
According to this webpage, Stelvio is closed only on the Südtirol side.
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Old May 24th, 2016, 08:10 PM   #3074
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Quote:
Originally Posted by g.spinoza View Post
According to this webpage, Stelvio is closed only on the Südtirol side.
Thanks, that's good news. No intention of driving to South Tirol this time.
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Old May 24th, 2016, 08:53 PM   #3075
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Stelvio is quite unique in that it is an Alpine mountain pass with 3, not 2, access. The Grimselpass is somehow like that.
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Old June 1st, 2016, 01:10 PM   #3076
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Are there estimates how much truck traffic through the Gotthard will be reduced now that the base tunnel enters its operation phase? Could it also attract goods traffic from the Brenner corridor?

Present-day truck volumes through the Gotthard road tunnel are exceptionally low for a major between between such large population centers. On other similar corridors truck volumes quickly reach 10,000 or even 15,000 per day, but the Gotthard route carries only 2,500 - 3,000 trucks per day.
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Old June 5th, 2016, 05:44 PM   #3077
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Bad news for Swiss road infrastructure funding: the "milking cow" referendum, aiming at using all revenue from petroleum taxation exclusively for road infrastructure, resulted in only 29.2% "yes" votes as per now:

http://www.nzz.ch/schweiz/volksabsti...blick-ld.18763

In the current system, only 50% of gasoline taxes go into road infrastructure, the other half is flowing into the general budget. Thus, there is a cross-financing of public transport by private vehicle users.
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Old June 5th, 2016, 06:14 PM   #3078
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I think something should change, but making the fuel tax a dedicated tax for road infrastructure is unfortunately unrealistic, almost no country in western Europe consideres the fuel tax a 'user fee' for roads.

Apparently the fuel tax in Switzerland is good for a revenue of 9 billion CHF per year, while current expenditures on the national road system is less than 2 billion CHF. So if it was accepted, the road budget would more than quadruple, they don't even have projects lined up for that kind of money.
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Old June 5th, 2016, 06:19 PM   #3079
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Don't fix what is not broken... Currently both Swiss roads and public transport is in excellent shape.
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Old June 5th, 2016, 06:24 PM   #3080
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The problem is that more freeways are needed in Switzerland, not that the existing ones are badly maintained.
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