The Cortina conspiracy

Well actually there’s no conspiracy.   I was just looking for a catchy headline.   But certainly Cortina was a surprise today.  A nice one.

There are really 8 different areas of Cortina.  Today’s plan was to ski one of the biggest areas called “the Tofana” then take the car back to a small area closer to Arabba called  – “the Cinque Torri” in the afternoon.

We had no high expectations for Cortina.  They have had less snow than any other Planet in the Dolomiti universe, the areas are not that well connected unless you are happy to use buses, food anywhere on the mountain is really expensive and John had told us that the lifts are really old and slow.

Sure, pretty much all of this is true, but on the other hand the ski runs at Tofana were excellent.  Long, long runs with good fall line and groomed piste in top condition.  We’re pretty expert at judging a piste by now as you can imagine!    It’s a super sunny spot to ski in the morning, but with the cold temperatures, the snow is still chalky and you can get a good grip on even the steepest black run.   There’s also heaps of runs that wind down through the trees, which we love.   The views are also spectacular!   All in all a really fun morning.

The resort does have a feature that I think should be available everywhere – the “Snita Station”.   We purposely rode this rickety old double chair just for the free tissues…just kidding.

All ski resorts should have one!
All ski resorts should have one!

After lunch, which yes, was the most expensive one we’ve had to date, we headed further up the pass towards the Lagazuoi where we were yesterday to discover a tiny ski area called the Cinque Torri. Named for 5 distinctive rock Tors standing together.   In fact I think there would have been six at one point in history.  It does look like one has taken a tumble or maybe it was bombed in WW1?

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The “6-1 = 5” Rock Tors of the Cinque Torri

In reality in a half decent snow year, the skiable area of the Cinque Torri would be vast even though its only serviced by just 4 lifts, 2 of which are rickety old doubles.  But with only limited snow making here and mother-nature sending all her snow to the US and the NZ summer this year, there’s only a few pistes open.  Aaah but the potential.

Before heading out for our first run down the sunny side of the hill, we stopped by Refugio Scoiatolli.  We were charmed…..it even had a hot tub out in the snow overlooking the magnificent mountain vista.   We think we might try and book at night here after Rick & Liz leave in mid Feb.

The hot tub at R.Scoiattoli
The hot tub at R.Scoiattoli

And lastly a couple of serious contenders for our Ski Fashion Crime list.  I’m still thanking the Gods of “Decorum and Good Taste” that the gentleman in the right hand photo decided not to take matters further.

Another great day in Universe Dolomiti!   Tomorrow we are getting ready for our first visitors.   We drive to Venice on Thursday morning to pick up Hubert and Marie.  Only a morning of skiing tomorrow as there’s some house work to do first.   But to Graeme’s excitement a new Bosch washing machine has finally been installed downstairs.   Just 57 minutes for a full cycle!    He’s currently undecided what to do with all his new spare time.

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