Sella Ronda, Italy, Jan. 22, 2018

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Sella Ronda, Italy, Jan. 22, 2018

Postby Tony Crocker » Sun Feb 11, 2018 10:36 pm

Today we attempted the Sella Ronda circuit in the clockwise direction, marked in orange on maps and signs.

Reviews say the green counterclockwise circuit is “less sporting.”

The day was mostly sunny with occasional patchy clouds from the departing weekend weather system. There was minimal wind and weather was cool, so snow surfaces were excellent. Some trails on the Sella Ronda can be congested and as most are at low intermediate pitch and in the sun I would suspect there are a lot of melt/freeze conditions later in the season. We probably skied the Dolomites under close to ideal conditions.

Once again we started with the Arabba tram. View back as we head west on the orange circuit.

View forward to the Gruppa del Sella central massif.

After two more lifts we are in the southwest corner of the Sella Ronda.

On the west side we see the eastern side of the Sasso Platto and Sasso Lungo mountains that we viewed fom the west at Alpi di Suisi on Saturday.

It is cold enough to see a sundog looking south.

Passo Sella has a popular refugio summer and winter.

In summer there is a tram (red arrows) going up to the pass between Sasso Platto and Sasso Lungo.

Refugio Passo Sella has an amusing urinal.

Note the soccer goal.

And an outdoor bar:

You can buy skis with Sella Ronda topsheets.

One orange ski for clockwise and one green ski for counterclockwise!

One more lift north we reached the Val Gardena complex, the largest overall sector of the Sella Ronda and site of much of the lodging base.


While riding lift 22 I spied a hillside of lightly tracked powder above lift 21 and took a long traverse to get there.

Following more powder into the trees I ended up below lift 21 and skied down to Monte Pana. I took three lifts back up, getting an overview of the area I skied the powder, from the hill to left of the lift.

I then skied a long black piste down to Santa Cristina. Meanwhile Liz had missed the traverse but explored a different sector, skiing down to Plan de Gralea and coming back up via the #44 tram. We reconnected at the Saslonch restaurant for a bowl of soup and a Bombardino.

After the break we skied down to Selva and crossed the road to lift 31 to continue on the north side of the Sella Ronda. We arrived in Colfosco around 2PM and took the 46 and 45 gondolas for quick view of the sector. Views from Colfosco:



We had an extra run in Colfosco because we didn’t realize that the #34 gondola between Colfosco and Corvara is a transport lift with no pistes in either direction beneath it. We could easily have headed back to Arabba via the #19 gondola, but we wanted to explore the Alta Badia sector and in particularly make the connection into the area where our skiing ended on Sunday.

There are a lot of lifts in Alta Badia and it’s a set of gentle rolling hills with short verticals and hard to read which way the pistes go on the Sella Ronda map. We rode lifts 29, 1, 2 and 9 to move east through Alta Badia.

At the top of lift 9 is the Las Vegas restaurant.

Then we skied the 1,600 vertical trail to San Cassiano, where we had been on our taxi ride Sunday.

We rode lifts 11, 8 and 16 to Pralongia, where 3 lifts converge. From 16 we needed to walk over a short hill to head south toward Arabba. But I didn’t walk quite far enough, so we skied the 9A trail which I realized too late was very long and led back to San Cassiano. It was now past 4PM and while we were now too late to complete the Sella Ronda, we did get back up lifts 11 and 8 and skied to Corvara.

I imagine there are people every day who don’t get all the way around to their home base. So this time we shared a van with 4 other people and it only cost 14 Euros to get back to Arabba. It would require one more day for us to complete the World War I and Sella Ronda circuits between Pralongia and Arabba. But with our explorations of Val Gardena and Alta Badia we skied 28,500 vertical Monday.
Ski Records
Season length: 21 months, Nov. 29, 2010 - July 2, 2012
Days in one year: 80 from Nov. 29, 2010 - Nov. 17, 2011
Season vertical: 1,610K in 2016-17
Season powder: 291K in 2011-12
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Tony Crocker
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Re: Sella Ronda, Italy, Jan. 22, 2018

Postby jasoncapecod » Mon Feb 12, 2018 5:16 am

Thanks for the great reports!!
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Re: Sella Ronda, Italy, Jan. 22, 2018

Postby jamesdeluxe » Mon Feb 12, 2018 6:01 am

Excellent and extra points for the football-goal urinal photo. Surprising how more places don't do something like that as it's always a hit with men.

I'm hoping to do the Dolomites/Sella Ronda in the next few years with my wife. I'm sure she'd love the extensive circuit of intermediate groomers.
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Re: Sella Ronda, Italy, Jan. 22, 2018

Postby kingslug » Thu Feb 22, 2018 11:22 am

I think at the end of the season you guys take all these reports and make a book. I'm going to use them to plan a trip for sure. Its made me want to go back to Europe. You could take all my VT resorts and dump them in the middle of all this..and not really notice them.
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