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Published: September 7th 2019
"With its unmistakable and imposing form "a throne" and its over 3,000 m in height and the position detached from the other peaks make it distinguish and appreciate from true mountain lovers and who know how to deal with due respect."
It seems like no matter what we do, we get home at 5:30 every day. Today I thought that I could skip taking a nap when we got home...but fell into a deep sleep, and I'm now fixing dinner of pasta, butter, and cheese at 7:45....I'll be so glad when jet lag is over....
Since the rain was not supposed to start until nearly noon today, we went for a long walk around the local villages: Villa, Torch, Garna and Shiucaz. We walked past fields of wildflowers, past churches, homes, and farms, and down to a river, where the road was closed due a landslide. There was a wedding in Garna, and the church bells rung loudly across the mountainside. On the way back, two paragliders landed at the local club right next to us!
We decided to skip making brunch at home, and head for Belluno before the rain came. It sprinkled on the way there, but stopped before we arrived in this very pretty town. We drove directly to the center of town and found free parking! We discovered later that there is large parking lot below the old town and an escalator that you ride up...oh
"The 16th century Belluno cathedral di San Martino dominates the square and the cathedral belltower also dominates views of the town from the surrounding mountains. The cathedral is a pleasing if unexceptional building in the yellow stone that characterizes the buildings in the region.'
The two main plazas were closed to cars, and were hosting a market. We walked around, and stopped at a cafe in the Plaza of the Martyrs, where Italian partisans were executed in WW2. After a light lunch, eaten outside in the weak sunlight, we strolled some more, and watched a wedding party exit the town hall.
Since it was still early afternoon, and not really raining, we decided to go up into the mountains again, on a different route. We headed for Passo Staulanza, a high mountain pass, a destination that we just picked from the map on the back of a Belluno tourist packet. It was a great choice! We drove for an hour on a windy mountain road along a deep river gorge, through small villages, and ski resorts. At the top of the pass is the impressive Monte Pelmo, We stopped and I hiked the trail that goes
around the mountain for about 15 minutes, leaving Bill at the "refuge" since his knees were hurting.
'The Staulanza pass , also known as Forcella Staulanza (1,783 m), is an Alpine pass
of the Dolomites
that connects the Val di Zoldo
with the Val Fiorentina
through the SP 251
( province of Belluno
). The fork is located between the slopes of Mount Crot
. At the pass there is the Passo Staulanza refuge
(1,766 m), with a restaurant and 25 beds, a convenient starting point for excursions on the Pelmo
This area is home to the Ladin culture and all the village name signs are in both Ladin and Italian.
"The Dolomite mountain range has revealed many of its geological secrets but the origins of an ancient tribe remain shrouded in mystery. The Ladin people, who still live in the area, have their own language, their own culture, their own traditions.One of the most widespread theories is that people living in Alpine areas in today's Switzerland and the Italian Friuli region once had a single language and culture. When invasions from the north brought Germanic influences to the valleys the Ladin people retreated to the highest, most inaccessible areas."
culture blends aspects of northern and southern European heritage, of the Germanic and Latin worlds, and this is evident in its myths and legends, where ancient Amazon goddesses reminiscent of Greek Artemis and Roman Diana meet Alpine totemic marmot tribes, as well as kings and dwarves from Germanic mythology. The same can be said about Ladin cuisine, which features dishes and products typical of Middle-Europa, such as hearty meat dishes, Knödel, Gulasch, Speck, Wurst and potatoes, as well as more Mediterranean dishes such as cajincí (a local kind of ravioli) and pasta courses. A typical blend of these origins can be seen in the Ladin dish par exellence: the turtra, a delicious deep-fried doughnut filled with spinach and curd."
We turned around at the pass and drove back home the way we came.
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