In the morning the sky was surprisingly clear – hard to believe. There were some big fluffy clouds in all the directions , but the sun was totally shining on our little B&B, and all looked shiny and bright. Iest said it won’t take more than half hour before the thunderstorms start but I was already happy with this unexpected glimpse of sun.
We had a nice breakfast and coffee, packed up, said goodbye with our host, and set out on our way to Cortina. We didn’t know if the road would be cleared up but we found soon enough – on the next main road intersection we were told no way. So we took the detour via Auronzo and Misurina and arrived in Cortina from the east. Surprisingly, the weather was still great – not totally sunny but plenty of sun around, and big chunks of clouds covering some mountain ranges, while others were in total clear. Beautiful drive with dramatic views. No rush, we got to our cam for about one o’clock. It was open but still visibly pre-season, very few people around yet. We picked a spot for our tent but seeing that the weather was unexpectedly good but unpredictable, we decided not to pitch yet and rather set out for a walk to make the most of it. We decided on a walk up from the the Falzarego pass – that’s a nice short walk with a lot of altitude gain providing amazing dramatic views in all directions. And plus – if one does not feel like walking walking down on the other side, there is an awesome cable car to take.
We started walking up at about two o’clock up the steep path from the pass. Weather was still holding nice but it was clear that some nearby ranges could not really claim the same. At about half way up we got to the interesting part of the path – a nice hanging bridge over a waterfall and some scrambling with a secured line over a narrow ledge. Afterwards we got to walking again, and some small snowfields crossing. The weather moved in a bit on us, and it started hailing – not too badly, and we thought it was better than raining in any case. When we were almost up the high point from which the path traverses almost at level to the refugio, we saw some lightning in the sky – it was still far away, over at another ridge but it still freaked out Iest a bit.
But at that point we were practically up and just enjoyed the flat bit of the walk on the top, with some amazing views all around. Then we got a tea and coffee at the hut and walked to the cable car to get us down. Iest didn’t really like the look of the gondolas as the cables were very steep down and he thought the wind was going to swing them all over the place – but he was too lazy to walk down as well, and in the end it turned out to be a pleasant little ride.
We went back to the camp to finally pitch the tent and then to Cortina for pizzas. Evening in the camp pub with a bit of beer and tea. Once we crashed in our tent a big storm started, proper with lightnings and thunders and a massive downpour – a nice soundtrack to falling asleep.