This is a how to trek Alta Via 2 (the northern half) post. I will provide details that include maps, costs, logistical requirements and facts as well as links to a full written narrative, photos and videos. This is a self-guided adventure on a shoestring or not (see cost breakdown for options). Follow the links to dig deeper into the adventure.
Note that I found the northern half easy but the southern half very difficult.
Total Cost Range of this Activity is: $$
|Train to/from Tuscany – Trento (Regional trains) $30×2
To trailhead (bus $2 & ski lift $12)
Albergo/Refugio dorm per night $25 (x5) Breakfast included
Meals (dinner x5 w/o drinks)
Lunch (pack your own or pay minimum $10)
Bus return from Marmolada to Trento.
You can use a tent and carry your own food to reduce the Albergo/Refugio costs, but at high altitudes it gets cold at night and weight are limiting factors.
Dolomites with Alta Via 2 – Part 1 marked
Plose (Ski area in detail)
Routes of all Alta Via Treks
Trekking Dolomite Guild
Cicerone Books (Best general trekking books)
Trekking in the Dolomites by Gillian Price, Cicerone Books
Tabacco Maps (#9, #1 & #4 1:50,000 recommended)
Tabacco 1:25,000 maps (I used #30 but a bit too detailed)
Kompass maps (I used #616, 1:25,000 but once again, found it a bit too detailed)
Good planning guide by GoHikeAlps.com
I used Trenitalia to reach Bressanone-Brixen then a SAD local bus to Plose ski village ($1.50). This is not one of the city buses, but a regional bus (upscale). Note that the village ski lift (Funovia) runs from 9am-6pm in the summer. Plose site and bus schudule.
I exited from the bus stop in front of Rifugio Castiglioni, at Lago di Fedaia using the direct bus that runs between Passo Fedaia and Trento (summer only). Outside of summer there are buses from Pinea to Cavalese (last village in the valley before Lago di Fedaia or 2.5 hrs walk from the lake via trail 605 that follows along the road). Buses run all year between Pinea and Cavalese (#101-1.5 hr trip). Cavalese to the train station Orha (just south of Bolzano or north of Trento) by bus or visa versa is easy and is about 1.5hr trip by bus or 15 min by regional train. Train/bus combo ticket to/from Orha to Fedaia is around $7.
Too many options to mention. Best to use the Trekking in the Dolomites guide and have an Italian sim card to call ahead to make reservations (places do fill up in the summer). Expect to pay 24-30 euro per night for a dorm bed (breakfast included) plus dinner additional. I did use a tent occasionally but water at altitude are an issue (water not always available free at the Rifugio) and nights can be cold. If camping and you find a good water source within an hour of your end-of-day, consider stopping for the night.
Road map of area trekked
Link to Narrative and Photos Part 1