July 10, 2015
Hike #22 – Skirting the Tofana di Rozes
Cicerone Guide, Shorter Walks in the Dolomites
Distance: 13.5km/8.4 miles
In general this hike is straight forward – two smaller loops connected by an old military road. The views are great and although you would think that since the top circle of this hike is really a back and forth on the same cliff face, one route above the other, that the views would be the same, somehow the difference in elevation and light change the views.
I would, however, especially for photographers, do the trail in the opposite direction than what is suggested in the Cicerone guide – beginning at Rifugio A Dibonai and heading west to Restaurant Da Strobel along the high route and then after lunch take the lower route back. This way you will spend most of your hiking time with the sun at your back and wonderfully lit views in front of you. The other change I would make to skip the lower route along the road. If you have the energy to climb the well graded hill twice, the views are worth it.
Warning : The second week in July of 2015 trail 404, along the top of this route, was washed out in sections and was difficult to cross with a long drop below. Certainly passable for those comfortable with this sort of terrain, but potentially worrisome for those that want a good track.
To start at Rifugio A Dibonai, drive up the long winding road off of SS48 (we saw plenty of cars in the parking lot).
From the rifugio walk up the road to trail 442. It’s a steep track up but reasonably well graded. At the junction with trail 404 which circumnavigates the mountain top, turn left, taking the 404 heading south west.
At the junction with trail 402, turn left again. The trail turns into a military road passing an area where rock climbers start the via ferrata up into the cliffs and the ruins of a military hospital.
If you want to have lunch on this side you can either head all the way down on trail 412 and then follow the trail along the road (turn left) to Da Strobel or from trail 402 continue on the road taking trail 423 to the cutoff for Da Strobel.
Since Rifugio A Dibonai is accessible by car, we noticed that this is a potentially good starting point for those wanting to follow trail 404 around the mountain.