Saturday, August 18, 2012

5 Days in the Dolomites

Our July 4th trip in the Italian Dolomites was fantastic.  We spent 5 days on Alta Via 1 (High Route 1), which consisted of gorgeous hiking between mountain rifugios (huts).  As Kenny said, "Take everything bad away from backpacking (heavy loads, setting up and breaking down camp, etc.), keep everything good, add beer, wine, polenta, a shower, and a bed...that's hiking in the Dolomites."

The Crew: 
Annie and Kenny

Alex and Britton

Luc and Cassy

Day 1 began on Falzarego Pass with a trip through 750 meters of WWI tunnels followed by a steep hike to get to Cinque Torri (the 5 Towers).
Some friends joined us for the WWI tunnels.  We walked this exposed ridge just before entering the tunnels.  Cinque Torri is in the background.

Cinque Torri

Rifugio Cinque Torri - my favorite rifugio

Uberto and Ines - rifugio owners, great hosts, and fantastic cooks

 Kenny is excited to eat his first polenta dish.  Polenta would be on the fixed menu the next three nights as well.

Day 2: Cinque Torri to Passo Staulanza
 Cinque Torri and Tofana di Rozes

Taking shelter after nearly being struck by lightning.


View of Monte Pelmo from our rifugio at Passo Staulanza.

Roughing it.  The sauna at Rifugio Passo Staulanza. 

Day 3: better weather and some steep climbs en route to Rifugio Tissi.

 Cassy has a good eye for these shots.

 Our lunch stop at Rifugio Coldai, perched on the edge of huge cliffs.

 Rifugio Tissi with the iconic Civetta in the background

 Alex looks 2000' down to the town and lake of Alleghe


Day 3: steep climbs and awesome views on the way to Rifugio Carestiato
 Lunch stop at Rifugio Vazzoler.  This place is a perfect base camp for long climbs on Torre Venezia and Torre Trieste (visible in the background).  Torre Trieste is a popular spot for BASE jumpers as well.

 Last stop: Rifugio Carestiato

 Typical rifugio accommodations

 Cassy finishes the long trek with a short hike to the car on day 5