Aspen Snowmass is opening for the Summer Season.

A family enjoying the outdoors in Aspen Mountain. Copyright: Aspen Skiing Company. Aspen Snowmass is opening for the Summer Season.

Aspen Snowmass is opening for the Summer Season.

Great news as Aspen and Snowmass are opening for the Summer Season. Aspen Mountain will open on June 12, while Snowmass will do so on June 21. Camp Snowmass will open on June 15.
 
A family hiking under the Silver Queen Gondola in Aspen. Photo: Aspen Skiing Company. Aspen Snowmass is opening for the Summer Season.
A family hiking under the Silver Queen Gondola in Aspen. Photo: Aspen Skiing Company. Aspen Snowmass is opening for the Summer Season.
Aspen is in my heart as I was lucky enough to live there for a while. Beautiful town, lovely people and amazing views. There is lots going on to keep you busy! This summer new policies and operating guidelines will be in place to protect guests. And also protect employees.

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What will open in Aspen Snowmass for the summer

There will be opportunities of sightseeing, riding gondolas, hiking and mountain biking. Or you can ride the mountain coaster. You can choose to be as active or lazy as you want. By seating and staring at the mountains, you can forget about daily chores!
The Lost Forest mountain coaster. Aspen Snowmass is opening for the Summer Season.
The Lost Forest mountain coaster. Aspen Snowmass is opening for the Summer Season.
On June 12, the Silver Queen gondola will start running from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. to go up Aspen Mountain. There you will have a chance to do some sightseeing, play disc golf or hike. You can take a nature program offered by the Aspen Center for Environmental Studies. Or ride up the cablecar to take your kids to play at the children’s play area. Going up and down the gondola is a great day out, at least for my kids!
Some food and beverage services will be available, all with strict social distancing. The operations on Aspen Mountain will run daily till September 7 and then on weekends till October 4.

Cortina d’Ampezzo is ready for a new summer season

5 Torri. Cortina d'Ampezzo. Credits Luca Menardi. Cortina Marketing. Cortina d’Ampezzo is ready for a new summer season.

Cortina d’Ampezzo is ready for a new summer season

Cortina d’Ampezzo is ready to open this summer season. Tourist lodgings, eateries and attractions are working on a safe and relaxing summer. The Dolomites is a great destination to enjoy and relax on spectacular settings.

This article may contain affiliate/compensated links. For full information, please see our disclaimer here.

The Lagazuoi cable car. Photo: Nicolò Rinaldi- @nclrnld. Cortina Marketing. Cortina d’Ampezzo is ready for a new summer season.
The Lagazuoi cable car. Photo: Nicolò Rinaldi- @nclrnld. Cortina Marketing. Cortina d’Ampezzo is ready for a new summer season.
 
Italian borders have opened  on June 3rd and Cortina is waiting new guests with open arms. The Lagazuoi cable car has opened on 30th May. Hikers and sightseers can access the top of Mount Lagazuoi to enjoy the vistas. In June the lifts of 5 Torri, Tofane and Cristallo will follow, and in July the Faloria will reopen. (See all dates here).
 
Some mountain lodges, hotels, restaurants and shops are already opened. Many others will do so in June. There are guidelines and regulations laid for safety in all types of situations.
Imagine being yourself here.... I can dream of it... Sauna Croda da Lago. Photo: www.bandion.it. Cortina Marketing. Cortina d’Ampezzo is ready for a new summer season.
Imagine being yourself here…. I can dream of it… Sauna Croda da Lago. Photo: www.bandion.it. Cortina Marketing. Cortina d’Ampezzo is ready for a new summer season.

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Your shopping guide to mountain hiking apparel and equipment

The family by Lago Chamolé in Pila, Aosta Valley. Your shopping guide to mountain hiking apparel and equipment.

Your shopping guide to mountain hiking apparel and equipment

Now is the time to start dreaming of the great outdoors. Travel will not be as usual for the time being, but we still can get out. Trends are showing that people will prefer staycations or driving rather than flying. You can drive from home for your holidays. We can use this time to prepare our kit for this trip. This made me think of putting together a shopping list for your next hiking trip. Here it is:

This article may contain affiliate/compensated links. For full information, please see our disclaimer here.

Too tired to hike. Going up to see the Monte Cervino in Cervinia. Your shopping guide to mountain hiking apparel and equipment.
Too tired to hike. Going up to see the Monte Cervino in Cervinia. Your shopping guide to mountain hiking apparel and equipment.

Hiking shoes:

You need shoes to be comfortable. The shoes have a denser footbed and a harder tip than normal shoes to avoid hurting your toes. Shoes need to hug your feet well and leave space for your toes to wiggle. I have bought some low ankle hiking shoes but realised afterwards that a higher boot is better. I have weak ankles that tend to twist a lot, and the high ankle boot avoids me doing that. Here are my suggestion for hiking boots for male, women and kids:

Hiking shoes


Hiking socks:

You want to have a good pair of socks when going hiking. Do not go hiking with some socks with holes- your feet will be sorry for it! I like merino socks, they are a bit more expensive but worth it in any climate. Merino is a great fabric that is very soft and lightweight, wickers moisture fast and keep your feet dry. Merino keeps you warm in winter and cool in summer and is breathable and antimicrobial. This allows your feet odours to be at bay. Here are my suggestion of hiking socks.

Hiking socks – Hiking Mountain Apparel and Equipment.

 

Hiking pants:

Pants need to be lightweight, breathable and of a quick-drying material. This prevents you staying wet if you cross a stream or get drench after a shower. You have the options of pants with zip that can convert into shorts. I prefer pants if walking through a wood with high grass, as you never know what you might encounter. Depending the climate, it might be snakes, ticks and all kind of bugs. You don’t want your hike to ruin your day because of this! I have learnt my lesson of long pants when growing up in Argentina and going horseback riding. When you go to ranches, you see the ‘gauchos’ always with what we call ‘bombachas de campo’. These are some sort of pantaloon that is wider at the tights and skinnier by the ankle. They allow freedom of movement when mounting horses. Plus they avoid anything creeping from the ankle up. When horseback riding, sometimes you go through tall grass. Thistles could catch and prickle your skin. This is the same concept with hiking pants, you don’t want your skin exposed!
 

Hiking pants: Hiking Mountain Apparel and Equipment.

 

Hiking shorts

Sometimes it is too hot for pants and you will walk in rocky paths, with the absence of long grass. Shorts would be a great option for those hot days. On top, while you hike you can gain a tan! The same principle applies here: to be of a light material that dries fast and wickers moisture out.
 

Hiking shorts: Hiking Mountain Apparel and Equipment.

Hiking tops

 
If you can afford purchasing Merino, go for it! You will not stink to the rest of the group! If not get any light material that wicks moisture out and dries fast if wet!
 

Hiking tops: Hiking Mountain Apparel and Equipment.

 

Hiking fleece

It is good to take one, at least in your backpack, as you never know how weather will pan out. I like having some light fleeces. They dry if they get wet very fast.
 

Hiking fleeces: Hiking Mountain Apparel and Equipment.

 

Hiking Jackets

 
Always take a light raincoat. You can fold it into a small pouch and take it out if it rains. Some new materials are pretty good and allow moisture to evaporate.
 

Hiking Jackets: Hiking Mountain Apparel and Equipment.



Water bottle/carrier

 
Always carry some water for everyone. If you are going with kids, make them carry water and snacks in a small backpack. I used to have a camelback, that was useful while skiing or hiking. It is a small backpack with a pouch of water inside and a pipe for you to sip when needed. Lots of people love it and I loved the idea and used them a lot. I only find the water has taste and nowadays I prefer to have my own water bottle. There are some nice stainless steel bottles in the market. Beware if they fall, they do squash, and even I had one that got perforated! So you need to handle with care.

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A Must-Read Guide to Summer in South Tyrol

Copyright: IDM South Tyrol / Valentin Pardeller. The Dolomites are a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The rose garden glows impressively in the evening glow on the horizon of the regional capital of Bozen.A Must-Read Guide to Summer in South Tyrol.

A Must-Read Guide to Summer in South Tyrol – Sudtirol.

South Tyrol (or Sudtirol) is open for visitors this summer. On June 3rd, borders will start opening for regional tourism within the EU and Schengen countries (all depending on Covid-19 cases keep on being down), so, I’ve thought I could put together a Must-Read Guide to Summer in South Tyrol.

A classic South Tyrolean village with the impressive Dolomites in its backdrop. Photo: © IDM Südtirol. A Must-Read Guide to Summer in South Tyrol.
A classic South Tyrolean village with the impressive Dolomites in its backdrop. Photo: © IDM Südtirol. A Must-Read Guide to Summer in South Tyrol.

This article may contain affiliate/compensated links. For full information, please see our disclaimer here.

South Tyrol is the northernmost province in Italy, bordering the Tirol and Östirol regions in Austria. Actually, it used to be part of the Austrian-Hungarian empire as part of the Tirol region (it was actually called Mittletirol). It changed hands to Italy after the defeat of the central powers on WWI in 1918.

How to get to South Tyrol

Fly to Innsbruck in Austria or Verona in Italy. If not, you have the options of Bozen/Bolzano airport, that is a smaller regional airport, or Bergamo, Venezia, Milano Linate, Milano Malpensa or Munich.

Copyright: IDM South Tyrol / Harald Wisthaler. Rowing boats at the Lago di Braies Nature Park, one of the most beautiful lakes I've seen in my life, worth a visit and a walk around the lake, which is easy for anybody! A Must-Read Guide to Summer in South Tyrol.
.Copyright: IDM South Tyrol / Harald Wisthaler. Rowing boats at the Lago di Braies Nature Park, one of the most beautiful lakes I’ve seen in my life, worth a visit and a walk around the lake, which is easy for anybody! A Must-Read Guide to Summer in South Tyrol.

Driving to South Tyrol

 

Coming from Austria, just pass Innsbruck and take the Brenner Pass, and you’ll be there. From Verona, go up the Brenner Motorway (A22 Autostrada del Brennero) and drive north. South Tyrol is part of the Trentino Alto Adige province, located in the northern side (the Alto Adige side).

Copyright: IDM South Tyrol / Clemens Zahn. From St. Zyprian in Eggental there is an impressive view of the rose garden, here against a clear blue sky. A Must-Read Guide to Summer in South Tyrol.
Copyright: IDM South Tyrol / Clemens Zahn. From St. Zyprian in Eggental there is an impressive view of the rose garden, here against a clear blue sky. A Must-Read Guide to Summer in South Tyrol.

Languages in South Tyrol

70% German, 25% Italian and 5% Ladin. The Ladin is a mountain language, what is considered a Romansh language spoken in the Dolomite valleys of Val Gardena and Alta Badia.

Photo: IDM South Tyrol / Clemens Zahn. Autumn is colorful in the Meraner Land, like here at Lebenberg Castle above Tscherms, where thanksgiving is celebrated. A Must-Read Guide to Summer in South Tyrol.
Photo: IDM South Tyrol / Clemens Zahn. Autumn is colorful in the Meraner Land, like here at Lebenberg Castle above Tscherms, where thanksgiving is celebrated. A Must-Read Guide to Summer in South Tyrol.

What to do in South Tyrol in the Summer.

Go to the area of Kronplatz and Brunico.

 

Kronplatz is a mountain in the border of what is Dolomites and Alps. The mountain itself has a shape of a Panettone with a punch in the middle. It is a very interesting mountain, which is connected with four villages around and lifts to each one on each sides.

Kronplatz in the summer. Photo: Kronplatz. A Must-Read Guide to Summer in South Tyrol.
Kronplatz in the summer. Photo: Kronplatz. A Must-Read Guide to Summer in South Tyrol.

Kronplatz is not only interesting for skiing in winter or hiking and mountain biking in the summerr. There is a good reason to go to the top of the mountain all year round, even if you don’t ski, ride, hike or bike! It is the only mountain, that I know of, with two really grand museums on its peak! These museums are Lumen Museum and MMM Corones.

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Courchevel’s plans to reopen in the summer season.

Copyright: Courchevel Tourisme. Sun coming down at the Saulire. Courchevel’s plans to reopen in the summer season.

Courchevel’s plans to reopen in the summer season.

This article may contain affiliate/compensated links. For full information, please see our disclaimer here.

Most of European ski resorts are planning to reopen with social-distancing measures this summer. Courchevel is one of them.

Right now, you can only visit if you live within 100 km away from Courchevel. Starting today, May 11th, people can visit and enjoy three sports in the great outdoors:

🎿 Ski touring: there is a lot of snow in the Saulire massif (Alt. 2710m) and the surroundings.

Rando trace and ski poles. Copyright: Courchevel Tourisme. Courchevel’s plans to reopen in the summer season.
Rando trace and ski poles. Copyright: Courchevel Tourisme. Courchevel’s plans to reopen in the summer season.

🚴‍♂‍ Cycling: The Col de la Loze (Alt. 2304m) has been cleared of snow.

Copyright: Courchevel Tourisme. Cycling with views of the Montre Loze. Courchevel’s plans to reopen in the summer season.
Copyright: Courchevel Tourisme. Cycling with views of the Montre Loze. Courchevel’s plans to reopen in the summer season.

🏃‍♂‍ Rando / Trail: the summit of the Dent du Villard (Alt: 2284m) is accessible.

Copyright: Courchevel Tourisme. Crete de Mont Charvet. Courchevel’s plans to reopen in the summer season.
Copyright: Courchevel Tourisme. Crete de Mont Charvet. Courchevel’s plans to reopen in the summer season.

The Silva MOONtain Races are coming back to Courchevel this summer.

This famous race will return after five years of being absent. It entails an original trail, at night on full moon Wednesdays – dates are August 5, September 2 and 30).

Continue reading “Courchevel’s plans to reopen in the summer season.”

For fanatics of Architecture, plan your multi-stop visit to Austria post Covid19

Kunsthaus Graz - Copyright: Graz Tourismus. For fanatics of Architecture, plan your multi-stop visit to Austria post Covid19.

For fanatics of Architecture, plan your multi-stop visit to Austria post Covid19

This article may contain affiliate/compensated links. For full information, please see our disclaimer here.

Now is the time to start dreaming of what we’ll be doing once the gates of the world re-open. So you can start dreaming, why not?

Once the lockdown lifts and travel returns, these five architectural hotspots will be waiting for you in Vienna, Salzburg, Graz, Innsbruck and Vorarlberg. Where will you visit first: an 11th century fortress with golden halls, an art gallery inside a ‘friendly alien’, or a ski jump designed by one of the industry’s most influential figures?

Austria Neustattalm, Styria. Photo: TrekEarth. For fanatics of Architecture, plan your multi-stop visit to Austria post Covid19.
Austria Neustattalm, Styria. Photo: TrekEarth. Bartek Rozanski.  For fanatics of Architecture, plan your multi-stop visit to Austria post Covid19.

Kunsthaus Graz
Built:
 2003
Location: Graz, Styria
Architects: Colin Fournier and Peter Cook
Fun fact: The Kunsthaus, also known as the ‘Friendly Alien’, played an undeniable role in helping Graz to secure its UNESCO ‘City of Design’ status in 2011. (featured photo)

The river Mur meanders through the Austrian city of Graz in Styria, winding past traditional gabled houses with red-tiled roofs and green copper turrets. On the river’s right bank, one building stands in stark contrast to its neighbours. The Kunsthaus Graz demands one’s attention with its biomorphic form, made from 1,066 pieces of acrylic glass, waxing and waning under rounded nozzles on its roof.

One aim of the Kunsthaus construction and its expressive, futuristic architecture was to reinvigorate the city’s less prosperous district opposite the historic centre. It’s now home to three major exhibition galleries, a viewing platform, a restaurant, media lounge, shop and a magazine house, welcoming a vast number of visitors from across the globe each year.

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The plans for reopening the mountain huts (rifugios) during summer in the Italian Alps in times of COVID19

Club Alpino Italiano- Photo by giorgio Rodano - Rifugio Bonatti with views to the Monte Bianco. The plans for reopening the mountain huts (rifugios) during summer in the Italian Alps in times of COVID19.

The plans for reopening the mountain huts (rifugios) during summer in the Italian Alps in times of COVID19.

This article may contain affiliate/compensated links. For full information, please see our disclaimer here.

There are plans to start relaxing the lockdown in Italy, starting gradually on different weeks starting on May 4th. Some people are starting to think on how they will vacation on the mountains and the beach. Beach private clubs are thinking on how installing the different tents with social distancing.

Photo by Giorgio Rodano- Rifugio Giogo Lungo- Lekjöchlhütte at 2603 m over the valico Giogo Lungo in the Sudtirol (South Tyrol) province. Club Alpino Italiano. The plans for reopening the mountain huts (rifugios) during summer in the Italian Alps in times of COVID19.
Photo by Giorgio Rodano- Rifugio Giogo Lungo- Lekjöchlhütte at 2603 m over the valico Giogo Lungo in the Sudtirol (South Tyrol) province. Club Alpino Italiano. The plans for reopening the mountain huts (rifugios) during summer in the Italian Alps in times of COVID19.

In the mountains, I’ve read that at first, they were thinking on not opening the rifugios, but today I’ve read on the Corriere della Sera that the Club Alpino Italiano is planning on how to open during COVID19 times.

Summer in the Italian Mountains

The Club Alpino Italiano has 326 facilities in all the country. They are planning in putting Covid kits with oximeters and ozonators to purify the air.

The ozonators are very quick and easy to use and is a product that does not leave odours such as chlorine or alcohol. These are now in phase of production now.

The CAI is thinking of getting everyone to bring their own sleeping bags and light tents, and for big rifugios to allow people to eat in different times, and clean thoroughly between seatings, and clean sanitaries often. They are talking also of providing baskets with dinners to the different tents, so as to avoid people being in cramming conditions indoors.  Shelters with two or four rooms for families could be used for a family group.

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Our summer in the mountains – one week in Courmayeur.

Courmayeur in the summer. Photo: The-Ski-Guru. Our summer in the mountains – one week in Courmayeur.

Our summer in the mountains – one week in Courmayeur.

Since I first went to Courmayeur, having stopped there for breakfast, on our way home from our annual ski week in Pila, driving through the scenic SS26, I fall in love with the place. When we were coming up, just after coming out the Mont Blanc tunnel, you see the gondolas and the tram on top of the route, plus the town with all its buildings very prettily aligned around the route and I knew I wanted to check it out! Being working in the ski biz for almost all my life, before moving to the UK (in the US/Canada and Argentina/Chile), I knew about Courmayeur as a name, but I have not visited many ski areas outside America.

Summer in the mountains? Why not? The look from Plan Chécrouit in Courmayeur. Photo: The-Ski-Guru. Our summer in the mountains – one week in Courmayeur.
Summer in the mountains? Why not? The look from Plan Chécrouit in Courmayeur. Photo: The-Ski-Guru. Our summer in the mountains – one week in Courmayeur.

Of all places in our first family ski holiday in Europe, we’ve finished in Ollomont – a small ski ‘field’ – I would say, in the end of the road where mountaineers go to ice climb – but I will write more of this in another post.

But back now to Courmayeur. Since our first breakfast there, we had a second one on the following trip with my friend Claudine from the Tourist Office of Courmayeur and her baby – and then again we’ve been up the Skyway coming back from Lago di Como, and finally we’ve stayed  for some nights in winter for two years now – and managed to ski the mountain! First time only one day and the last time, for two (even though my knee was not up for skiing!).

But last summer, I’ve convinced my husband to go at least one week during our summer holidays. I would love to uproot my family there, (to the answers of my husband of what will I do, I don’t speak the language – and me telling him to just learn it!) I wanted to stay in the summer, to see how it is life in Courma in the summer. I’ve been in the fall, seeing at all the hotels – for my Must-Read Guide to Courmayeur. Even many hotels were closed, they’ve opened them to me, and I could see them while many of the maintenance and upgrades were taking place.

Continue reading “Our summer in the mountains – one week in Courmayeur.”

An ‘ephemeral lake’ appeared on the Mont Blanc massif due to warm record temperatures

The Rochefort group with the distinctive Dent de Gént viewed from Courmayeur. An ‘ephemeral lake’ appeared on the Mont Blanc massif due to warm record temperatures.

An ‘ephemeral lake’ appeared on the Mont Blanc massif due to warm record temperatures. The phenomenon, witnessed by a guide of the Società  Guide Alpine Courmayeur has been reported by the “Montagna Sicura” foundation about the repercussions of the hot temperatures of these days. The training is near the Rochefort group.

 

From AostaSera.it, Montagna Sicura and Guides du Mont Blanc

The canicular temperatures of these days have shattered the primates of heat in the valley floor, but their effects in altitude still worry those who deal with climate. On the Mont Blanc, due to the effect of a zero thermal that reached a height of four thousand meters, in addition to having created the sporadic conditions for which at least 150 paragliders managed to land on the summit the other day, a lake was formed in recent hours due to of the rapid melting of snow .

Technically speaking, we are seeing an “ephemeral lake”. The “Montagna Sicura” foundation reports this on its Facebook profile , sharing a photograph of the guide of Courmayeur Gianluca Marra (author of a video), which reproduces the unusual phenomenon, testimony to the “many repercussions on the high mountains” of the “Record temperatures these days” .

In the post, the foundation remembers that it is “the same place” (in the Rochefort group, whose most significant peak is the Dente del Gigante) ” in which it had already been observed in 2016 , when our technicians carried out an inspection of land that had not highlighted any problems “. An effect certainly suggestive from the point of view of landscape, but which can only give to reflect on the climatic evolution.

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25 Years of St. Anton Film Festival

St Anton Film Festival. Photo: Simon Rainer. St Anton am Arlberg Tourism Office.

25 Years of St. Anton Film Festival

”Mountains, People, Adventure“ Film Festival celebrates its 25th anniversary in St. Anton am Arlberg in late summer this year. The international mountaineering elite will convene in St. Anton am Arlberg from 28th to 31st August 2019 to offer an exciting insight into expeditions that have taken place around the globe. 

Filmfest 2018. Arlberg-well.com- Copyright TVB St Anton am Arlberg. Photographer: Simon Rainer. 25 Years of St. Anton Film Festival.
Filmfest 2018. Arlberg-well.com- Copyright TVB St Anton am Arlberg. Photographer: Simon Rainer. 25 Years of St. Anton Film Festival.

 A total of 20 screenings will be made, twelve of them premieres. St. Anton Film Festival has firmly established itself as a hot spot for the outdoor film scene over the past 25 years.

The atmosphere of a professional major event combined with a family atmosphere impresses guests and locals time and again, with the festival garnering record numbers of visitors last year. In addition to films with fascinating imagery, international endurance athletes, directors and impressive personalities talk live about their experiences and adventures and comment on their films. The entertainment begins each evening at 20 hrs.

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