“Ex Ferrovia delle Dolomiti” (disused Dolomites railway) piste, Cortina-Dobbiaco

Difficulty
Medium
Start
Fiames Nordic Center
Arrival
Fiames Nordic Center

A splendid trail that links Cortina to Dobbiaco, in the Val Pusteria valley, following the disused Dolomites railway line, which was closed in 1964, converted into a track used for cross-country skiing in winter and for cycling in summer. In addition, this route has been used for a historic cross-country skiing race since 1977: the Granfondo Dobbiaco-Cortina race, one of the most traditional ski marathon events in Italy, and part of the International Visma Ski Classics Championships. The entire route presents no difficulties, and the trail is prepared for both classic and skate skiing, so that everyone who likes cross-country skiing can tackle it without any problems.

The route has a gentle but constant uphill slope, with sections in tunnels and over bridges that were part of the old railway, features that give this route a special fascination. From Fiames, the piste heads northwards towards the Cimabanche Pass, with a long straight section between mounts Col Rosà and Pomagagnon, then going around the Podestagno hill and reaching the hamlet Ospitale, where there is a characteristic restaurant and the oldest church in Cortina, dating back to the 13th century. From here, the piste goes through a forested area and continues alongside two small lakes, until it reaches the Cimabanche Pass, at 1,529 m, the highest point on the route and near the border between the region of Veneto and the Alto Adige area.

From here there is a section running gently downhill to Carbonin, where there is a viewpoint from which you can admire the famous Tre Cime di Lavaredo (Three Peaks of Lavaredo), until you reach Lake Landro. From here, the trail runs up and down, taking you to the War Cemetery and eventually to Lake Dobbiaco, reaching the Nordic Arena.

To return, follow the same route that you took for the outbound trip.

Notes

The fact that the route is close to roads with many bus stops makes it possible to leave the track at any time.

Downloads

Variations

If you prefer reducing the total ascent, you can take one of the S.A.D. company buses, running between Cortina and Dobbiaco, to reach Dobbiaco or Landro, and then follow the trail in the Dobbiaco-Cortina direction. In this case the total ascent is 300 metres.

Info

Length
53 km
Altitude
1.532 m
Positive elevation gain
556 m
Negative elevation gain
556 m