The Brenta Mountains in the Dolomites are popular with via ferrata (iron road), cable assisted, climbers.
They stretch 40km (25mi) on a north-south axis. I nearly chose to hike a lengthwise itinerary called The Mighty Brenta Dolomite Traverse. … Unfortunately transport to the trailheads was problematic.
Instead I crossed west to east from famed tourist trap Madonna di Campiglio to the most lovely mountain town I’ve found in Europe so far, Molveno.
Again I took a cable car to start as high as possible.
I was delivered to Rif. Tuckett and Sela.
The wildflowers are still going strong in late July. (They are nearly gone now in Canada.)
It’s great being instantly on top of the world. Just like heli-hiking. The start is mostly a traverse under the highest peaks. Amazing. Such easy access to this environment.
The sunset was a classic Dolomite experience. Wow.
Next morning the weather was fantastic. So I stashed my pack in the boulders and dashed up as high as I could go to Rif. Alimonta.
Wonderful. But daylight was burning. I turned back and pushed hard to get over the mountains.
Here was the crux of the hike when I was there. (It was not quite as bad as it looks in the photo. But it was challenging.)
I entrusted a Summit Stone to the virgin guarding the highest pass.
This is astonishing Rif. Pedrotti 2491m. Many famed climbers have stayed here.
Starving, but in a mad rush now to get DOWN off this mountain, I ordered a meal. It tasted FANTASTIC at this altitude.
No photos from my decent. I practically ran from 3000m to the lake at 868m in order to be sure I would catch a bus out of the valley.
That was one long, long exit.
This was my personal favourite of the 4 Dolomite hikes I did on this trip. See the rest of my photos on flickr.