- Be sure to bring a guidebook with you. We used the Gillian Price book “Trekking in the Dolomites” and would highly recommend it.
- Buy a Tabacco map, either before you go or before you start your trek. This is what they look like.
- Keep your backpack as light as possible. It might seem light enough when you’re in your bedroom packing, but imagine carrying that load when you’re 4 hours into a trek and going uphill. I managed to get my backpack down to about 7kg, which was just about OK for someone of my size, but I then had to carry about 2kg of water on top of that.
- Bring empty water bottles with you so you can refill them at the various rifugios daily.
- What’s a rifugio? It’s basically a mountain hostel located along the official trails. It generally costs about €50 per person per night for accommodation (typically in shared rooms), 2-3 course dinner and breakfast. You can book some of these before you set off via the internet, which is probably recommended if you go during peak season or are planning to do the much more popular Alta Via 1 route. It was completely fine when we went (mid September) on the Alta Via 2 route and we didn’t need to book in advance.
- Bring a sleeping bag liner when you stay in these rifugios. O, also bring lots of cash.
- We didn’t really stop for lunch, opting to eat our fill at breakfast and trekking through to the day’s accommodation. We ate a selection of energy bars, chocolate bars, dried and fresh fruit and nuts along the way to tide us over. (We brought these with us from London. It’s expensive to buy things from the rifugios.) I’d say the most important thing is ensuring you have enough water. If you need lunch, you can always ask the rifugio to prepare something packed for you the night before.
- There are some cabled sections along the route so you should think about taking a harness, rope and carabiners with you if you’re concerned about safety or are not the most confident of trekkers.
- Check the weather before you go and bring cold weather gear if necessary. You never know what will happen in the mountains.
If you have any other questions, let me know! Have fun – this is a beautiful part of the world and somewhere I’d want to return to in the future.