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4
moderate to challenging

Traveller Rating

 

Activities
  • guided alpine walk
Accommodation
  • 6 nights in mountain refuges/gîte-hostels or mountain hotels
Meals
  • 6 Dinners
  • 7 Lunches
  • 6 Breakfasts

7 Days£1080GBP

Overview

Trip Code: DGW

Trip highlights


  • Trek through stunning alpine scenery high in the Dolomites
  • Enjoying the variety of scenery from valley lakes and rivers to the stark beauty of the dolomite spires
  • Experience the WWI history of the mountains
  • Sharing your walking day with a group of like minded travellers

There are few alpine walks that encompass a region so entirely as this stunning circuit through the dramatic spires of the Dolomites in northern Italy. From the lively ski town of Cortina d'Ampezzo flanked by classic dolomite peaks to the WW1 bunkers of the Tofane massif, the woods and alpine lakes of the Sextener Dolomites and the distinctive Tre Cime (3 peaks), every day on the walk offers a new scene. Accompanied by an experienced mountain guide and like minded group members, your gear is carried for you, allowing you to enjoy the sights and vistas. Nights are spent in comfortable 'rifugios' or 'Hüttes' in beautiful locations, where German or Italian cuisine could be on the menu, owing to the strong German heritage of the region.

Countries:

Italy

Starting Point:

Cortina

Finishing Point:

Cortina


Itinerary

Meet the guide and group at 10am. From the delightful alpine ski town of Cortina, there is a group transfer before we walk at the Tofano peaks, the location of the Dino Buzzati film “Désert des Tartares” (The Desert of the Tartars). Here the trail winds high along a wartime mule track, through rock needles and past bunkers and abandoned refuges. The views down to the Cortina basin and surrounding peaks are fabulous and a great reward for your efforts. After a tough first days ascent we'll relax in our mountain hut, the Refuge Guissani, and absorb the fine Italian alpine hospitality. Ascend +845m/2772ft, 4km

Meals:  L,D

The first section of the walk takes you through a wondrous rocky landscape as you zig zag down the trail past the incredible Masarè amphitheatre. Passing waterfalls and outcrops of dwarf mountain pines, you continue towards the next nights’ accommodation with the scenery changing with cascading streams crossed by wooden bridges and evidence of marmot burrows. Ascend to Fanes refuge (hutte) in the shadow of Fanes Kreuzkofe. Ascend +645m/2115ft, descend -1143m/3750ft, 15.76km

Meals:  B,L,D

A stunning walk today taking in the picture postcard views of the Fanes group of peaks. Descending to the emerald lakeside of Lago di Braies ringed by conifers makes this a particularly rewarding day. Ascend +923m/3028ft, descend -1463m/4799ft, 17.1km

Meals:  B,L,D

The dual language of the area means that many landmarks have two names (eg Lago di Braies in Italian or Pragser See in German). Today’s walk takes us along wooded trails with some steep sections to the Durrenstein hutte (2040m). The walk takes us through the eastern Dolomites over green meadows on wide trails with a panoramic view. Ascend +1206m/3956ft, descend -674m/2211ft, 15km

Meals:  B,L,D

A visually stunning walk to the three towers, Tre Cime. We are right on the former Austro-Italian border where fierce fighting took place during WW1. Walking under Strudelkopf we pass lake Dürrensee. Ascend for overnight accommodation at Drei Zinnen hutte with outstanding views to the towers and surroundings. Ascend +1186m/3891ft, descend -834m/2736ft, 13km

Meals:  B,L,D

Today takes us through tunnels, over passes and amongst a stark rocky landscape with 360 degree views of the mountains. The domination of Tre Cime is clear as we circuit these impressive spires. Overnight at Rifugio Lavarredo. Ascend +788m/2585ft, descend -868m/2847ft, 10.23km

Meals:  B,L,D

Our last day of walking back down into the lush valley and Lake Misurina. In 1927 Aldo Bonacossa made numerous first descents on skis following today’s trail, which has become his namesake. Descending the Bonacossa Dolomites, we are in the shadow of the massive Cadini di Misurina. On arrival at the lake we are transferred back to Cortina where the trip concludes at approximately 2pm. We recommend not making onward travel plans before about 3.30pm. Descend -750m/2460ft, 6km

Meals:  B,L


Inclusions

  • 6 breakfasts, 7 lunches, 6 dinners (does not include drinks) – continental breakfasts are served and usually consist of breads, jams, coffee, tea and juices. Lunch is picnic style. Dinner will consist of 2 or 3 courses which include regional specialties
  • 6 nights accommodation in mountain refuges on a dormitory share basis.
  • Luggage transfer by mule (limit 7kgs)
  • Experienced mountain guide

  • Travel to and from the start and end point in Cortina
  • Drinks
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Storage of luggage
  • Transfers
  • Travel insurance - mandatory

Accommodation


Suitability

moderate to challenging

4

MODERATE TO CHALLENGING – GRADE 4 The walking is moderate to challenging (4) grade with daily guided walks of around 4-6 hours, between 4 and 17.5 kms and maximum ascents of 1250 metres per day. Whilst 3 of the days would be considered moderate there are 4 days which involve harder stages and all days will involve steep uphills, descents, and many sections of the trail which require care with loose rock on the trail. Some stages involve the use of ladders. The accent is on keeping a steady pace with time to stop and take photos (subject to weather conditions). You will need a good level of fitness and a good walking pace to participate fully in this adventure. It is considered suitable for walkers with some experience in alpine terrain. If you have no alpine experience, we recommend you participate in a series of hikes of 7-8 hours with lots of uphills and downhills - this will gauge your suitability for this walk. Early in the season (June) you may encounter snow on sections of the trail which may be quite deep and alter the grading of the trip to challenging. At any time during summer, weather conditions may be variable and you should be prepared for all conditions including snow, ice, strong sun and extreme winds. Pre trip training should involve a combination of cardio vascular sessions of 45 minutes, 3 to 4 times a week, coupled with endurance hikes of up to 8 hours carrying a daypack. Our staff are happy to provide further advice on pre trip training. Important note: good quality walking boots with ankle support are a pre-requisite for your participation. Runners or shoes without ankle support are not suitable for the conditions encountered on this walk.


Departure dates


Notes

DN1
Please ensure you read the downloadable trip notes prior to booking.

Total Priceper person from

£1080GBP

Options & Supplements*
    *Prices listed are per person

Trip reviews


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Personal Experience

We've been walking and cycling the planet for over four decades and are passionate about delivering exceptional service. Combined, we’ve travelled to virtually every corner of Europe, and are eager to share the many benefits of travelling on foot or by bike.

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Our well priced trips offer great value for money. Included in your package are comprehensive route notes, maps & guide books along with bag transfers and locally run accommodation. We take the stress out of organising your holiday.

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We have have been operating active self guided holidays for over 45 years. We handle all the necessary logistics so that you can relax and explore your destination at your own pace. Many of our tours depart daily, giving you even greater flexibility.