A route of moderate difficulty, running through one of the most evocative and unusual Ladin Dolomite valleys, amongst pastures, mountain huts and ancient villages: an area where time seems to have stopped and traditions have been retained untouched.
From the bus station in Cortina d’Ampezzo, take the Alemagna road, Strada Statale 51, southwards towards Calalzo di Cadore. Cross the Boite Valley and head towards the centre of the Cadore district. After reaching the charming town Pieve di Cadore, Titian’s birthplace, head downhill towards Calalzo di Cadore, with views towards Mount Tudaio. After leaving Calalzo di Cadore and Lake Centro Cadore, head towards Auronzo di Cadore.
One kilometre before the start of the town, you can admire the turquoise Lake Auronzo, with the Tre Cime di Lavaredo peaks in the distance. Here, turn right and begin the steep climb towards the Sant’Antonio Pass (1,476 m), also known as Monte Zovo Pass, not one of the best-known climbs but possibly one of the toughest in the Dolomites (9.1 km, 14 hairpin bends, 649 m total ascent), which links the Ansiei and Comelico valleys. From here, go downhill for 5 kilometres towards Padola, with a fine view over the Comelico valley and the Sesto Dolomites.
Continue along the road Strada Statale Carnica, with an easy climb up to the Monte Croce Comelico Pass (1,636 m), which marks the point of separation between the Sesto Dolomites and the Carnic Alps. From the Pass, start the enjoyable ride down towards the town of San Candido, in the Three Peaks Nature Park. Carry on towards Dobbiaco and take the Alemagna road, Strada Statale 51, towards Cortina d’Ampezzo, which brings you back to the starting-point after about 30 kilometres of gentle climbs and descents.