Day 8: Enroute to the Enchanting Dolomites

My journey continued towards the Dolomites, a natural wonder that I had been eagerly anticipating. The route took me over the Rolle Pass, where a side trip to the Baita Segantini mountain shelter offered a stunning view of the Pale di San Martino hut. This area is nothing short of a visual feast.

Interestingly, the rocks of the Dolomites are composed of magnesium carbonate and calcium. This unique composition makes them glow with an intense red hue during sunrise and sunset. However, on this particular day, the Sun decided to play hide and seek behind the clouds, muting the usually vibrant red tones. Nature, it seems, has a mind of its own.

Pale di San Martino during somewhat cloudy sunset

A note for fellow travelers: the gravel road to Baita Segantini is only open after 18:00. Any attempts to ascend by vehicle before this time are strictly prohibited. Plan accordingly!

After a day filled with awe-inspiring vistas, I settled in for the night at Camping Eden. As the name suggests, it was a little slice of paradise amidst the mountains.

Day 9: Peaks, Passes, and Cloudy Skies

The day started with a visit to Passo Gardena, which boasts breathtaking views of the surrounding peaks. It’s the kind of place that makes you feel humbled by the grandeur of nature. From there, I ventured over Passo Valparola and Passo Falzarego, each offering their own unique perspectives of the region.

Corvara is a beautiful small town that deserves it’s own story!

Unfortunately, as the day progressed, the weather took a turn for the worse. The sky became a blanket of clouds, obscuring the once clear and majestic views. Given the deteriorating conditions, and the fact that I was feeling quite exhausted, I decided to call it a day earlier than usual.

I set up camp at Camping Alla Baita near Lake Misurina. The early stop was a strategic decision, influenced by two factors: my rising levels of fatigue and the increasingly gloomy weather. As the clouds rolled in, obscuring the once-clear vistas, I couldn’t help but feel a tinge of sadness. Despite this, I knew that it was time to start thinking about the journey home.

Those morning mamatus clouds were the first sign of the vicinity of incoming storms. It’s time to return home…

As I spend my last night on this trip in my Yeti, listening to the pitter-patter of raindrops on the canvas, I couldn’t help but feel a mix of emotions. The trip had been a rollercoaster of experiences, from awe-inspiring peaks to unexpected beach sightings at high altitudes. As the morning dawned, I knew that it was time to bid farewell to the mountains and begin the journey back to Zadar.

Reflecting on the adventure, I am filled with gratitude for the experiences and the memories that I will carry with me forever. Despite the challenges, both physical and mental, this long journey through the Alps and the Dolomites has been one for the books.

And so, as I pack up my gear and prepare for the journey home, I am reminded of the words of John Muir, “The mountains are calling, and I must go.” Until next time, happy trails!