This is not a cliché.

February 2013

02 February 2013

Tre Cime di Lavaredo

Time: 7 hours
Difficulty: average/high
Bike type: road bike
“To be at lake Misurina and take in the view towards the Tre Cime di Lavaredo is to be at the very heart of Nature. All around you is an extraordinary panorama which leaves you short of words and indeed is best enjoyed in silence”
You set off from Hotel La Perla in Corvara and head out on the main road towards La Villa (5 km). At the junction for San Cassiano turn to the right. After 4 km you arrive at San Cassiano itself, the village taking the name from the guardian saint who in times long past was referred to as “Armentarora”. To the left of the village are located the old farmhouses of Rü and to the right is Piz Sorega. The peaks of Conturines and La Varella splendidly frame this lateral valley. On reaching Sarè, a poular winter cross country location, a 7 km uphill stretch with a steady incline of about 9% awaits you. At this point you reach Passo Valparola, where the view is so spectacular that you are obliged to stop and take in the beauty of Nature: in the distance are the Aurin Alps, a stunning array of snowfields and glaciers, to the north you can make out Val Badia, Putia and the Gardenaccia plateau, to the west Col di Lana, Sas de Stria and the location of the war museum, and to the east Lagazuoi. Near the mountain hut there is also a very particular small lake. The whole area is distinctive for the facts and occurences related to the First World War. Now it is time to embark on the downhill run towards Cortina, passing Passo Falzarego; Cortina, known as the pearl of the Dolomites, is only 15km away. As you cycle down you will see on the right hand side the spectacular formation of the Cinque Torri, a paradise for climbers, to the left Col dai Bos and the Tofana di Rozes. On reaching Pecol (where there is an astronomic observatory) the view opens up to take in Sorapis, Faloria and Cristallo, all surrounding peaks which hang above this majestic village. Cortina is well worth a visit: the church, the famous ‘case delle regole’, via del Corso with its array of shops, and the ice stadium recalling the Winter Olympic Games of 1956. From the station you turn right and go on to Passo Tre Croci, cycling for 6 km across fields, meadows and tree lined paths. Once you reach the top of the Pass you go down about 3 km as far as the junction for Auronzo-Misurina (3 km ca.), where you then turn left and go up a slight incline for about 3 km and you arrive at a small plateau type area called Misurina which is at the foot of the Tre Cime di Lavaredo and of Monte Piana, where there is also to be found a small lake. From here you head downhill to Carbonin, the first 5 km are a fast descent whilst the remaining 10 km are still downhill but relatively flat. On arriving at Dobbiaco you turn for Val Pusteria. You then go right through the valley to Monguelfo, taking in Villa Bassa. On arriving in Monguelfo you take a left in the centre and proceed on the main road for Valdaora, and from there you continue on the cycle path, which is a pleasant series of ups and downs through countryside and woodland as far as Riscone, the village at the foot of Plan de Corones. You go on to Santo Stefano and then to San Lorenzo, but before you actually come into this village and before the train subway you take a left and follow the panoramic road of Val Badia as far as Longega. From Longega you are only 23 km away from your home base in the Hotel La Perla in Corvara. The route snakes its way through the Dolomites, the contrast provided by Val Pusteria is interesting and particular: here agriculture is the driving force and many farmsteads, barns, meadows and woodlands are to be seen. This itnerary is particularly recommended for those preparing for the Maratona dles Dolomites and it is a good idea to include it in your training programme in the weeks leading up to the competition. Also note that from Misurina you can reach the mountain hut called Auronzo, an ascent well known due to it featuring in the Giro d’Italia. It is a demanding climb of 4 km with an average gradient of 16%.

Maria Canins