Located in Trentino, northern Italy, the Passo Rolle connects San Martino di Castrozza with other valleys in the mountain range of the Dolomites. Unquestionably, this area at around 2000m altitude is perfect for hiking in summer and skiing during winter.
In early October this year, I was lucky enough to enjoy a hike there myself.
Sunrise in the Dolomites
We started our day early at around 4am to reach the mountains before sunrise. When we arrived, it was still dark, but on the horizon the sky began to turn red and orange. After a few sips of warm coffee, we started our hike. As the sky started to get lighter, the clouds turned pink, and we experienced a breathtaking sunrise in the mountains. Along with the spectalular sky, slowly, the peaks of the mountains surrounding us appeared in red light.
Meanwhile we continued our hike and found a herd of sheep grazing in front of a mountain. We took some shots until their Shepherds and herding dogs showed up.
Breakfast at Baita Segantini
After a few minutes we reached a Baita (mountain house) located on a small lake. In the background the massive mountains called Pale di San Martino were visible and we had a small breakfast break enjoying this view.
Hiking in the morning light
From there we followed a small path along mountains and hills until we reached the bottom of the mountain that we were planning to climb.
Peak Cristo Pensante
The hike was pretty steep and after an exhausting climb we reached the peak rewarded with an amazing view of the surrounding area. On top there was built a cross including a religious statue called Cristo Pensante. At this time there were more people around and we were already missing the silence of the early morning hours just after sunrise.
Sheep surprise while hiking down
As we hiked down back to the car, we took a different path along a small stream. Along the way we heard the bells of the sheep and goats we spotted at dawn. Suddenly, we saw them running down the hills, driven by the herding dogs. It didn’t take long, and we were surrounded by all of them.
Deer in the valley
It was just around 1pm or 2pm when we had reached our car again, so we decided to drive to the lake we saw from the peek. By coincidence we parked at the wrong parking lot, where we discovered a herd of deer.
Wandering at Lago di Paneveggio
After appreciating these graceful animals, we arrived at Lago die Paneveggio. A lot of water was missing, so we hiked through the dried-up riverbed following a small stream with crystal clear water, that led us to the lake. It is surrounded by a coniferous forest and after a while, the sun appeared over the hill and shone through the trees.
At around 4pm we were really exhausted and decided to drive back home, happy about the hike we completed this day.