On the traces of knights of the Middle Ages
Start: Furnes, 1681m (middle station of the turn-round cable railway Ortisei-Seceda), parking lot with fee at the bottom station
Walking time: 2:15 hrs. (about 8.5 km)
Character: Hardly any rises. Caution when crossing the gullies which pour down from the Picberg (after rainfall, minor landslides).
Refreshments: At the end of the tour, in St. Jakob and above Ortisei. No snack bars.
The first part of the loud leads along the historical Troi Paian, the prehistoric path, which connected Val Gardena with the Eisacktal (discovery of a bronze dagger; museum of local history Ortisei). From the middle station, to the right, after a few steps down below the ropes of the second part of the cable railway, and down to the shingle-covered Muratschwaige. From there, following sign-post “Troi Paian-Balest, marking 8”. Right after that we cross a little stream in the glen (sign-post) and descend across wooded slope teach a terrain shoulder. At the traverse we turn into a forestry road which we follow down to the bend at the Ravisboden (sign-post). We cross the Ravisboden at the underground water tank. On the path 8 to an even wooded shoulder, then continue through several small wooded valleys to the rubble field “Gran Roa” which leads to a shelf on the Pitschberggrat (Balést, 1832m, 1 hr.). This is the traverse to the main valley (possibility to descend to the St. Jakobs church on path No. 6).
The path leading to Lech da Lagustel, a pond of melted snow and ice, begins a few steps below the cross with bench and then leads to the left, eastwards, traversing the slopes on the sunny side with view of the free towering Langkofel, to the idyllic pond above S. Cristina; 20 minutes. There turning-point: to St. Jakob we descend on a tractor track, vague and unmarked at the beginning, and shortly afterwards reach the path St. Jakob – Sëura Sas which we follow down. At the nearby junction we turn to the right. Further below it runs into the broad tractor track to St. Jakob. We stay on it until the first junction after the cross.
There we have to choose whether we visit one of the restaurants in St. Jakob or reach the village on the detour Pezahof – St. Jakobs church – Col de Flam
To the oldest hut in Val Gardena
Start: Parish church in Ortisei, 1236m, parking garage at the bottom station of the Seceda cable railway (200 m away), car park
Highest point: Col Raiser 2102 m
Walking time: 3 hrs. (7.8 km)
Character: Mostly broad, evenly ascending alpine path, which is steeper only between the Gamsbluthütte and the Col-Raiser lift
Marking: No. 4
Leaving the church we hike on the road to St. Jakob (30 minutes). The hamlet we are ascending to is behind the Hotel Ansitz Jakoberhof. We continue past the farm houses towards a thin forest. After the two armed cross we reach a level area, soon passing the meadow surrounded farm houses of St. Christina. Continuing upwards and finally turning into the Cislestal with its view to the Geislergruppe. At a junction with several sign-posts, we leave the trail and after a few minutes we finally reach the nearby Gamsbluthütte (1952 m).
From there, crossing a grassy shoulder, a steep path leads within 15 minutes to the restaurant at the top station of the Col Raiser cable railway (2102 m). There is an unrestricted and magnificent view.
We can hardly miss the continuing path (no. 4) as we can already see the Regensburger Hütte, which is 20 minutes away to the northeast.
Return: On foot on path No. 1 or by the Col Raiser turn-round cable railway to S. Cristina.
A forgotten (mountain) paradise
Start: S.Cristina, village part Plesdinaz, 1600m; parking at the end of the village road, above Runcaudie, a group of farms
Walking time: 1 hr (from the parking lot)
Character: Short, without any danger, but steep
Marking: Red-white-red, No. 20
The deserted rock pulpit on the Sëuras- Hochalm is situated in the geographic center of the settled half of the Val Gardena, high above the villages S. Cristina and Ortisei. From here the hiker has a view of the whole valley and the magical surrounding of pastures and mountains. Luis Trenker shot a section of his film “The Lost Son” on this rock pulpit which is decorated with a cross. The original of the famous cross, which Trenker filmed in 1934, is photographed in numerous prayer books and is in the museum for local history in Ortisei. It was made by the local sculptors Peristi and Walpoth out of a tree on the spot, where the tree had grown on the rock. (Sëurasas, lad. = above the rocks) From the Hotel Dosses, at the main road in S. Cristina, we walk to the Cisles street close to the Plesdinaz street. After about 20 minutes, at the junction to the right, into the road to the higher situated Runcaudiehof (sign-post: Haus Rojula, La Vara, Waldruh).
At the above mentioned farms we will find the first starting point to the ascent (sign-post Sëurasas, Pic).
A second starting point is the small parking lot 100 steps after farms, at the end of the road.
Following the path up to the nearby access path (St. Jakob- Aschgleralm), which we follow for some minutes down to the nearby wooded hollow. At the well, to the right, junction of the Sëurasas-Steig (1745m, sign-post). The broad but steep path, marked red-white-red (marking No. 20), winds through the thin pine forest, describes a wide arc to the east around the low rock wall, which drops off from the mountain pasture to the south, and reaches the steep slopes of the Picberg and a little later the alpine huts on the plateau. It only takes 5 minutes to visit the rock pulpit with the life-sized cross (1-11/4 hrs.).
From the cross path 6 drops to the west, down across the rocky terraces of the Plan-dla-Roles-Boden, and than follows first the wooded Picberg ridge of Balest, 1823m, and further down the St. Jakobs church, 1566m. Continue to the west past Col de Flam to Ortisei.
See and hike the Dolomites in the summer - see some of my favourite places to hike in the travelogues. There are hiking trails for all abilities - numerous cable cars can give those that need it a head start . Experts can tackle the via ferrata routes (iron ladders) - I must admit I wasn't brave enough to try those :-S
The local tourist office can supply you with much information on the area and hiking maps -they will be only to happy to help - check out their website too.
This ski run has been described as one of the ten runs to ski before you die.
I think it might be a bit overrated but it was certainly worth the experience.
This is a long run down through a pretty spectacular valley with a restaurant halway down, it was a bit cold when we did it so we probably rushed a little and didn't do it justice.
At the bottom there is a long flat section where for a couple of euros you can use a horse lift (a horse with two or three ropes trailing out behind it whcih will tow you back to civilisation) this is quite a novel experience.
It is possible to ski from selva to a point where you catch the bus up to the lift which takes you to the top of the valley and then ski back to Selva inside a day.
If there is a big group of you or you are just slower skiers it would be advisable to not hang around too long before heading for home although we were through the hidden valley and back on the main pistes by lunch time. However, we had a little trouble picking up the sella ronda signs to take us back to Selva.
There are two well marked trails around the Sella massif, the green route and the orange route. The trails circle the large outcrop of rock and take you past the resorts of the Dolomiti Superski area.
They are comfortable cruising runs which average intermediate skiiers could handle. It is not recommended to dally too long for fear of not making your starting point but good skiers could ski the routes in a morning and leave plenty of time for apres ski back in Selva (Wolklenstein)
There is a path running beneath the Stevia wall - starts in Daunei area and leads to the St Silvester chapel. This path is one of the oldest in Selva, has stunning scenery and is aslo a path of meditation as there are 14 stations of the cross, carved into tree trunks by local artists and the young people of the village in 1983.
The Vallunga Valley in Selva is great for low level walks as well as tracks leading up to the Puez Odle park for more strenuous hikes.
The valley in the winter time has a cross-country ski trail too. Near to the entrance of the valley is the tiny St Silverster's chapel - seen in the pic - which is worth a peep inside as you pass.
Haha, it would be very difficult not to see this mountain group in Selva - it is quite prominent at this top end of the Val Gardena.
We enjoyed hiking down the middle of this group - yes believe it or not there there is a chasm running down the inside of it! We also hiked around its base and admired it from the opposite side of the valley from the top of the chairlift in Ortisei - see transport tip.
Winter is also a wonderful time to explore the Dolomites. Paths are opened for winter walkers as well as pistes for the skiers...and sledge runs. In fact so many activities to enjoy.
This view is of the Scillar range from Alp de Suisi - beautiful isn't it.
Winding up the road to the Sella Pass there is a wonderful view of the Marmolada - the highest mountain in the Dolomites. The massif that reaches 3342 m of altitude with the Punta Penta. This peak, together with Punta Rocca, forms the main range. The Punta Ombretta and Sasso Vernale are not so well known but are still part of the Marmolada. For once I managed to snap it without it being in cloud :-)
It takes the bus a good hour to get from Selva up to the Pass Pordoi. The sella group may look like one big mountain but there is actually a chasm/valley running through the middle. This valley can be hiked in summer and skied off piste in winter with a guide. Please note the Pass Pordoi funicular is not valid with the Gardena Pass - you'll have to fork out extra for it.
Imagine that at the other side of the Sasso Lungo people used to ski down!
Only expierenced skiers were allowed to ski down. Nowadays there is no longer a gondola up there in wintertime. Too dangerous.
A beautiful view from here to Sasso Lungo.
This ist an ice wall, the end of Sasso Ghiaccato, between Lagazuoi and Armentarola. It's really worth to stop and take a look at this fantastic wall!
Beautiful views into the mountains. The gondola takes you in a few minutes from passo Falzarego (2105 m) to Lagazuoi (2752 m) , from where you get a great view