As the season continues, we meet many more couples, families and friend groups coming to the Dolomites not to necessarily do the same thing, but to use their holiday to enjoy different activities. Not everybody is a skier and those that are sometimes choose to try out everything that a Collett’s Mountain Holiday has to offer and more often than not one will go off skiing whilst the other snowshoes for the day. If there was to be one particular snowshoe available to tempt every guest into trying, it would have to be Cinque Torri; the five towers on the Passo Falzarego. With an absence of fresh snow fall this week and a green light for driving up the pass, 18 guests from Haus Valentin were keen to explore the tracked out path between the impressive rock formations.
Due to the popularity of the day, two organisers came together to allow more flexibility for the walk. As it turned out, the group split very early on; some fancied an uphill extension whilst the majority opted for an easier route around the rocks and down through the trees. The full extension up to Nuvolau (the oldest Rifugio in the area) was unfortunately deemed dangerous due to the avalanche risk, so once we arrived at Rif. Averau we took advantage of the extra time by enjoying a hot drink.
The clouds had been circling us all morning and as we began our descent back to the five towers a small gap allowed the sun to hit the rocks, lighting it up as the main attraction. We met up with the other half of the group who told us there was too much snow to walk through the rocks and out the other side – we wanted to see for ourselves so off we went. They were right; the 4 metre high archway (one that we usually walk beneath) where the two rocks lean against each other was completely filled in. It was a real shame the guests couldn’t experience the technical part of the snowshoe this time round but instead we headed back out towards an alternative route.
Early afternoon was soon upon us and the group agreed it was time for lunch. Heading out of view from the ski piste, we found a lovely spot on the snow which overlooked Cinque Torri and the Sorapis massif in the distance. The temperature was reading a comfortable +3° so it was a while before the cold set in.
We past a hut on our way down which was looking a bit sorry for itself – what is usually a hot spot in the summer was now half buried deep in snow, the chimney just about poking out of the top.
Other snowshoers past us as we meandered through the forest, gently descending our way back to the car park. At times we weren’t sure if we had misplaced a member of the group, but we soon realised the ‘off-piste’ option was more favourable for John.
Arriving back at the car park there was a welcome announcement that our taxi would be another half an hour – a perfect amount of time for that second drink of the day. All 18 guests reunited in the cafe and the warm smiles around the room suggested another successful day upon the mountain.