||Strenuous, Strenuous Plus
||Hotel, Mountain Hut
Sep 6, 2021 - Sep 14, 2021
|Single Supp Cost
Hiking Trip Summary
We think this is one of the most dramatic, exciting, and wonderful hiking areas in the Alps. Strikingly different from the French and Swiss Alps, the limestone Dolomites of northern Italy rise dramatically from alpine valleys to form startling spire-like peaks and towering canyonesque rock faces.
Beginning in the Italian Sud Tirol, our 9-day Hut-to-Hut Hiking in the Dolomites trip will take us south along the famed high route, the Alta Via 1, through the Pragser, Tofana, and Civetta mountain groups. The impressiveness of the scenery and the variety of terrain along this route are matched only by the warmth and hospitality of the rifugio and hotels. The unusual contrasts in landscapes and curious mix of Italian and Austrian influences can only mean fantastic hiking and plenty of pasta!
In 20 years of experience in offering hut-to-hut hiking in the Dolomites along the Alta Via 1, our enthusiasm for this route has only grown, and we invite you to join us for this exciting hut-to-hut guided trek through the Italian Alps.
Day 1: Arrive Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy
The trip begins at the hotel in Cortina d’Ampezzo, a classic Dolomites village nestled among the spectacular mountains of the Tofane, Cristallo, Sorapis, and Antelao. This beautiful village has a wonderful main street lined with several shops and outdoor cafes. There is a bus and train access from Venice. Cortina is a great place to begin our trek. Welcome dinner and trip orientation.
Day 2: Hike to Rifugio Fodara Vedla
Morning transfer to Ra Stua. This pleasant hike offers our first views of the Tofane, the Croda Rossa and the Croda del Becco. Passing the high alpine meadows of Ra Stua, our trail switchbacks up through the larch forest before leading us to our rifugio for the night, Rifugio Fodara Vedla. After we arrive at the rifugio we will have time for a wonderful day hike. Private triple or twin rooms and shared facilities. Dinner and breakfast included.
Day 3: Fodara Vedla to Rifugio Scotoni
Getting an early start, we first descend steeply (1,380') to the valley and then hike up to Rifugio Fanes and Lago di Limo, about 2 hours away. A spectacular 360-degree view awaits at a picnic spot at the Passo di Limo. The trail then opens onto a lush, broad valley between the rocky summits of Monte Castello, which was heavily fortified during World War I (WWI), and Piz des Cunturines (10,111'). The scenery and colors are stunning. This descent (1,500') leads down to the valley floor, followed by a 40-minute climb to Rifugio Scotoni. This small rifugio is set in a beautiful valley surrounded by the towering mountains of the Cime di Fanes. This small, comfortable rifugio has bunkrooms with 5 to 7 bunks in each room. Shared facilities. Dinner and breakfast included.
Day 4: Rifugio Scotoni to Rifugio Cinque Torri
From Scotoni we hike up through the Alpe di Lagazuoi, then through a vast limestone plateau to the Rifugio Lagazuoi (gaining 2,530′). Surrounding us are the Punta di Fanes, the cliffs of the Lagazuoi, and the massive Tofana di Rozes (10,650'). The scenery just doesn't quit. It is big and impressive in all directions. Near the pass, there are several WWI underground passages called galleries, which serve as memorials to the terrible fighting that took place here in 1916.
After we stop for lunch at Lagazuoi, which has a very good restaurant, we have an optional hike, which takes us down through one of these galleries. Our other option is to take advantage of the cable car, which will bring us to the valley. We rejoin the hiking route and begin our final ascent (950') to the very friendly Rifugio Cinque Torri, which has been run by the same family since 1936. Once again, the setting for this rifugio is remarkable. Bunkrooms and shared facilities. Dinner and breakfast included.
Day 5: Rifugio Cinque Torri to Rifugio Staulanza
Today the trail takes us near two striking rock mountains, Averau and Nuvolao, as we descend to Passo Giau. The trail then leads over the Forcella Giau, where the views of the Tofana and Monte Cavallo are inspiring, not to mention the mountains on display to the south: Monte Fromin, Cernera, Pelmo and the upswept flank of Monte Mondeval. The trail leads over lush alpine meadows, and perhaps we'll spot some wild edelweiss. The last part of the day leads below Pelmo’s north face (which is 3,300′ straight up to the top at 10,454′) to our comfortable mountain rifugio at Passo Staulanza. This is a long day. Small private rooms with private bathrooms. Dinner and breakfast included.
Day 6: Rifugio Staulanza to Rifugio Tissi
From Passo Staulanza, we join a popular trail and climb to the shoulder of Monte Coldai, which lies at the edge of the famous Monte Civetta (10,620'). After stopping for a picnic lunch at Lago Coldai, we continue to the col Negro di Coldai, which looks over at the towering west face of Monte Civetta. This "wall of walls" extends for over four miles! About mid-way past this wall, we climb to our rifugio at 7,500'. Rifugio Tissi, perched on the mountain flank looking out at the Val Civetta, has views down the Alleghe Valley and west to the Marmolada Glacier. Bunkrooms and shared facilities. Dinner and breakfast included.
Day 7: Rifugio Tissi to Rifugio Bruto Carestiato
We descend from the refugio to the Val Civetta over the Col Rean, through beautiful, open, green meadows, to the narrow valley of Val Corpassa. Our route takes us right below the sheer rock faces of the Torre Venezia and the Torre Trieste, both rising some 2,000' feet. Perhaps we will see some climbers ascending these impressive towers. We pass by the Rifugio Vazzoler (5,656') and then ascend steeply through a dense forest to Forcella de l'Orso and alongside Monte Mioazza's southern flank to Rifugio Bruto Carestiato. Today’s hike includes some rugged terrain. We think it is one of the more varied and certainly one of the more remote hikes of the trip. Bunkrooms and shared facilities. Dinner and breakfast.
Day 8: Rifugio Bruto Carestiato to Forno di Zoldo
Continuing on the Alta Via 1, we first arrive at Passo Duran and cross the mountain road. The route from this point on is remote and rugged. The trail leads south of the rocky Tamer Grande and Castello di Moschesin. Rounding the corner at the pass at Moschesin, you are treated with views of Mont Talvena, Cima de Zita, the deep, narrow valleys of the La Clusa to the south, and Monte Pelmo (again) and the Val Prampert to the north. This rocky, rough and quiet path leads to the farm at Malga Pramper, where we will be met by our van late in the afternoon for transfer to nearby Forno di Zoldo. This is a great way to end our hike. We spend the night in a family-run hotel in the pretty village of Forno di Zoldo. Farewell dinner a nearby restaurant. Our extra luggage from Cortina will be at the hotel when we arrive.
Day 9: Depart Forno di Zoldo
The trip will end with a group transfer from the hotel to the Venice Airport. The departure time is about 7:00 am. Travel time is about 1 1/2 – 2 hours; expected arrival at the airport is about 8:30 – 9:00 am. Note: We have purposely set the departure time early to accommodate morning flight departures from Venice. If you would like to depart later in the day, we can arrange for a taxi at an additional cost.
If you wish to have your own room in the hotels (Cortina, Staulanza and Forni di Zoldo only), there is a single supplement charge. If you are traveling alone and would like to share a room, we will match you with a roommate. If a roommate is not available we will not charge extra for this “forced single.”
- All accommodations
- All breakfasts (some are continental-style)
- All dinners
- Cable car lift and transfers as per itinerary
- Group transfer to the airport on the last morning
- Lots of great hiking and memories!
Airfare, lunches, travel to the hotel in Cortina (the starting point), optional/individual transfers or excursions, items not on set dinner menu, beverages, tips to guides, insurance, items of a personal nature.
There is one luggage transfer: our extra luggage will be transferred from Cortina to Staulanza, where you will be able to swap out items. Once we depart Staulanza, our extra luggage be transferred to our hotel in Forno di Zoldo. This exchange or resupply allows packs to be lighter. Other than this one transfer, hikers will need to carry their personal items with them. (See our sample packing list.) With advances in synthetic clothing and other travel gear, it’s possible to keep your pack weight to about 15 lbs., including lunch and water.
ACCOMMODATIONS AND FACILITIES
Hotels: We stay at wonderful family-run hotels in Cortina, Staulanza ( a small inn), and Forno di Zoldo. All rooms with private baths.
Rifugios (mountain huts): A rifugio is a mountain “lodge” that offers simple overnight accommodations for hikers. The rifugios can vary greatly depending on where they are located, however, they all are situated in amazing places.
• Rifugios Fordara, Scotoni, Cinque Torri are more like simple mountain inns and have reasonably spacious and quite nice bunks rooms (top and bottom beds). They have very nice bathrooms, complete with hot showers. Blankets, pillows and a small bath towel are provided at each of these rifugios.
• Rifugios Tissi and Carestiato are rustic, basic, and simple. They have larger bunk rooms (up to 8). There are blankets and pillows on each bunk. Towels are not provided. There are basic bathrooms with showers. Tissi is the most basic rifugio; the setting is nothing short of amazing!
Breakfasts and dinners are served at the hotels or rifugios and lunches are picnic style along the trail.
Cortina is easy to access from several airports, but we recommend flying to Venice (Marco Polo) as a first choice. Once in Venice, you can take a bus to Cortina. The buses depart roughly every two hours from the Venice Airport and travel to Cortina; travel time is about 2 1/2 - 3 hours. The buses arrive at the main bus station Cortina, from where it's a short walk to the hotel. We'll provide very detailed travel information about getting to Cortina.
WHO WOULD LIKE THIS TRIP?
Our Hut-to-hut Hiking in the Dolomites trip is perfect for those strong hikers looking for a challenging and varied hiking experience along one of Italy's classic long-distance routes. It's a great trip for those who are intrigued by the idea of hiking from one mountain hut to the next and the cultural experience of staying at Italian rifugios. This hiking area is strikingly different from the French or Swiss Alps. The red, yellow, and orange rock faces of the Dolomites towering limestone peaks are nothing short of dazzling. For every avid mountain hiker, the Alta Via 1 is a route not to miss!
We will meet on Day 1 at 6:30 pm at the hotel in Cortina. Please contact us for detailed travel information regarding travel to Cortina.
The trip will end with a group transfer to Venice Airport. Departure time from the hotel in Forno di Zoldo is 7:00 am. Travel time is about 1 1/2 - 2 hours. Please allow for travel time when making plans.
If you would like to register, or would like to receive more information, including a detailed itinerary (including elevation gains, loss, and distance), please contact us. We're also happy to supply a list of past participants willing to share their honest insights into this guided Hut-to-Hut Hiking in the Dolomites experience.
Reserving This Trip
A deposit of $500 along with your completed registration forms will reserve a space on your requested trip. We accept
MasterCard, Visa, and American Express card as well as personal checks. To make a deposit, you may either follow one
of the “Reserve a Trip” links below, give us a call at 1-888-845-5781, or include your payment information in the
area provided when completing your registration forms.
The balance is due 75 days prior to departure for most of our trips. When applying less than 75 days prior to
departure, full payment is due. For final payments, we accept MasterCard, Visa, and American Express, as well as
As confirmation of receipt of your deposit, we will send you a comprehensive packet of information
pertaining to your trip, an invoice for final payment and additional information including release agreement form,
medical information form, travel information, and packing list. Upon receipt of final payment and no later than 30 days prior to your trip start, you will receive trip
rendezvous information and a list of accommodations. Returning trip participants will receive a 5% discount on most
Receipt of all forms will finalize your registration.