A great classic among the hiking paths of the Italian Dolomites, in this case in the Dolomites of Cortina, is the Ivano Dibona hiking path. Not particularly difficult, however fairly long, the Ivano Dibona hiking path is a….downhill hiking path! In fact, it begins a the Lorenzi shelter (at almost 3,000 meters) to then go under a height of 2000.
This hiking path allows you to get a close-up 360 degree look at the crystalline and to pass through a few rather appealing and worthy areas such as the small wooden suspension bridge near the Lorenzi shelter – symbol of this famous hiking trail – and the ancient Italian military fortifications from the First World War (a few trapped, rather incredibly, in the mountain).
Nota bene: the hiking trail is not difficult from a technical standpoint, however it must be planned with good weather and the length, about 7 hours, must be taken into consideration.
Departure – Arrival: Rio Gere – Son Forca skilift
Type: hiking trail
Elevation: 500m – 1800m
Time: 7 hours
Ivano Dibona hiking trail – the must-do hiking trail if you are staying in Cortina
From Cortina you can take Alemagna highway 48 which takes towards passo Tre Croci; to Rio Gere, where the Son Forca ski lift (1680 m) takes off; there is a large free parking lot. Through the use of the ski lifts you can easily reach the Lorenzi shelter (2932 m), from which the Ivano Dibona hiking trail begins. After arriving at the top, you can take a path on the left of the aerial cable car made up of a few metal steps – to be done downhill – which will take to you to the first cave, the so-called “sniper’s cavern”. A little farther ahead, you will find the famous 27-meter-long bridge, the one on which a few scenes from the film “Cliffhanger” were filmed: through this small wooden suspension ladder you can reach the peak of the Ampezzo Crystalline (3036 m).
From the Lorenzi shelter, you can first go down to the Forcella Grande (2874 m) and then to the Padeon fork (2862 m), where the military hut that is dedicated to Maggiore Buffa di Persero (2760 m) is still visible. You can go back up slightly on the side of the Vecio del Forame (2868 m) until arriving at a series of passages which cross spectacular, but at the same time, very exposed ledges.
The path follows a stony zigzagged route which descends into Cortina until arriving in a slippery and steep canal (to be descended for about 200 meters). A caution sign invites you not to continue, advising you to take a route on the right which, abandoning the canal, allows you to reach a new ledge. You can reach the Forcella Bassa (2417 m) where, if you like, you can descend directly into the Padeon valley (it is better to avoid this shortcut: it is difficult and advisable only if really necessary). Our itinerary continues along the main trajectory, until the Col dei Stombi (2168 m); the path begins to lose height, on hairpin turns, at the Padeon valley, which is reached at about 1700 meters of height.
You can continue to follow the Padeon valley route (path no. 203), until arriving at an artificial lake, which after passing it (after a large valley) you will find the Passo Son Forca (2110 m) and therefore the shelter of the same name (2215 m). From the shelter you can descend to Rio Gere through path no. 206 or you can divert to reach the cozy shelter.
The hiking trail is well equipped in the right sections; the route, even if mainly downhill, needs much practice, considering the length. Seeing as how you will walk for hours on very exposed ledges, it is good to check the weather forecast before attempting this route.