Nuvolau to Citta′ di Flume

I was up in time to get this 6 AM photo of Cortina from Rifugio Nuvolau.

Overnight a snow rabbit appeared.

I made a 12-photo panorama of where we were heading this morning – Passo Giau.


Just before 6:30 AM I took another photo of Cortina and one down in the other direction toward Cinque Torri. To the right of Cinque Torri, Rifugio Cinque Torri can be seen. Directly below the rigugio in this photo is the notch in the cliffs of Crepe dei Ronde where we descended toward Passo Giau a bit later this morning.

The sky was starting to light up so I made a 14-photo panorama looking to the east with Cinque Torri, Cortina, and the peaks of Croda da Lago in the image.

Cortina can be seen at the very left edge of the photo below. Above and to the right a bit is Sorapiss. To the right of that are the jagged peaks of Croda da Lago and the mastiff of Lastoi de Formin.

I made a 19-photo 360° panorama, but what is shown below is a cropped version of it to show the features better.

Here are five additional panoramas taking between 6:40 and 7:00 AM.

At 6:45 the sunrise progressed nicely. Stephen and Young joined me outside followed by Martin.


Martin took this photo of me with his phone.

I made some more pans from Nuvolau around 7 AM.

Near the front of the refugio, the kitten was exploring and playing in the newly-fallen snow.

For variety I made a few multi-shot panoramas with my iPhone. The first is a combo of 4 photos and the second is from 2 photos. Behind Cinque Torri in the second photo is Tofana,

Before we left I made one last panorama of the snow on the patio of Rifugio Nuvolau.

We were about to head down. Young was very ready to challenge the snowy path.

We had several possible routes down from Rifugio Nuvolau. Nuvolau is located at the “d” on the map below. The short, direct way down is the orange trail, 438. This trail is via ferrata, and we would probably not even attempt it with good conditions. But in the snow there was no choice. So we looped farther north on the purple trail before heading back south to Passo Giau.

We headed down in the snow around 8:15 AM. Here is Stephen somewhat ahead of me.

The panorama below shows Rifugio Lagazuoi, where we spent the night before last, and Tofane, also called Tofana, as well as Rozes, where we had that critical junction the day before.


Here are a couple of photos of Young and others coming down from Nuvolau.


This photo shows the ledge where Stephen and I sheltered from the sleet and lightning the evening before.

Stephen was ahead of me.

The 4-shot panorama below shows us descending. Rifugio Lagazuoi is at the peak to the far left. At the right hand side is Tofana.

From about the same spot, here is a close up view of Rifugio Lagazuoi with the cable car terminal to the right of the rifugio.

Here are three views of Rifugio Nuvolau from partway down the trail.


We reached Rifugio Scoiattoli where Jim had spent the night. He was long gone this morning. We would not see him until we got to Rifugio Citta′ di Flume. I photographed this bike rack with Rifugio Lagazuoi at the top right.

I made a panorama from around this spot which shows a number of features including our trail down to Passo Giau.


In the distance Croda da Lago was dramatic with its jagged peaks.

Below is a 12-photo panorama of our route down to Passo Giau. You can just barely see Nuvolau at the top of the peak on the far right.

Here we are partway down that trail.

We reached Crepe dei Ronde, which is a steep descent. Fortunately there were excellently-constructed switchbacks. Here are some photos of this descent.


The photo below, taken with my iPhone, shows our path down on the left side of the photo.

Below shows Young working her way down from Crepe dei Ronde.

The remainder of the way down to Passo Giau was fairly easy and quite beautiful.


Partway down we found the signpost where the via ferrata direct trail came down to join us.

We continued on toward Passo Giau.

This is the view back toward Ra Gusela from along our path. It is a 16-photo panorama.

The clouds were quite dramatic as we approached Passo Giau.


I made a whimsical 18-photo panorama that shows Young twice heading to Passo Giau. Here is that panorama followed by the two halves of it.


Below is a 32-photo, 360° panorama as we approached Passo Giau with some of the spots labeled. We are heading next over Forcella di Zonia seen in the left part of this image.

We could see Rifugio Nuvolau from Passo Giau. Here are two views of it high up on a peak.

Young took a photo of me, and I return the favor by getting a photo of her.

Passo Giau approximately marked the halfway point of our hike over Alta Via 1. We arrived there a bit before noon. I might have had a quick snack. Perhaps it was half of a left-over sandwich. Stephen and I bought one lunch to share the first few days because the lunches were so large. But soon we mostly skipped lunch. Not Jim who enjoys eating more than we do.

From Passo Giau we took trail 436 over Forcella Giau. Our destination for the night was Rifugio Citta′ di Flume. Most of the Alta Via route did not have such detailed signage.

We headed on, passing through a small turn-style, presumably to keep animals off the road.

As we headed to Forcella Giau, I continued to make a number of multi-shot panoramas.


Stephen was ahead of me as we approached Forcella Giau.


As we neared the forcella I made a 45-photo, 360° panorama. Forcella Giau is just beyond the visible trail on the right side of the image.

Here are a few more photos as we approached Forcella Giau.


As we neared Forcella Giau I made a number of multi-shot panoramas looking back toward Passo Giau and, in the farther distance, Cinque Torri.

In the photo below you can see hikers coming up the trail.

Here is Stephen approaching Forcella Giau with Young at the far right side of the image a bit behind him. The peaks at the top right are Tofana.

Below is a 360° panorama at Forcella Giau.

Here is another large multi-photo image made at Forcella Giau.

The view changed once we got beyond Forcella Giau. Here are three photos taken a bit before 1 PM.


I saw a small body of water in the distance that fascinated me. There were several people at the far side of it. Here is a series of photos as we zoom in for a closer view.


I met a young couple feeding lunch to an infant. Although we did see some young children at some of the rifugios, I believe they all arrived there by car. This child was clearly on a hike.

Here are Stephen and Young along the trail.

As we hiked the trail between Forcella Giau and Forcella Ambrizzola, I made a 360° panorama seen below. Below it are cropped versions of the left and right side of this image.

Below are a pair of images as we approached Forcella Ambrizzola.

Here is a 15-photo panorama from just before Forcella Ambrizzola. It looks in both directions along the trail which is not really U-shaped at this point.

Below is a 3-photo panorama I made with my iPhone.

A few minutes later, when we reached Forcella Ambrizzola, I made a single-image panorama with my iPhone.  

From the forcella we got a nice view down to Cortina. Here are three photos taken from this spot.


The terrain became somewhat more pastoral as we dropped down towards Rifugio Citta′ di Flume.


Below is a whimsical image showing Young three times as she rushed along the trail ahead of me. She was traveling without reservations and wanted to get to Rifugio Citta′ di Flume quickly to try to get a room. Unfortunately they were fully booked so she had to walk another hour to the next rifugio. She was waiting there for us the next morning.

Finally Rifugio Citta′ di Flume was in view.


Jim Gold was already at the rifugio waiting for us. I got there a bit before Stephen. Here is Stephen entering the rifugio then later enjoying his photos with Jim.

Violetta and Tim, as well as Carmen, were also there.


That evening before bed I got some of the last light hitting Monte Pelmo and Pelmetto.

Another great day, starting in snow and ending with a nice meal and a warm room out back to dry boots.

I thought earlier in the trip that I should not have brought my small Polder clock/alarm – every ounce was important to me – but I used it this night.  I took the upper bunk because Stephen’s knee was bothering him. I did not want to risk my iPhone falling from there, so I used the Polder instead.