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OT - My Holiday Snaps


Mark90
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For those who don't know I've recently be for a weeks holiday in Italy. One of the things we wanted to have a go at while in italy was some via ferrata. This is kinda like scrambling or low grade climbing with protection provided by a steel wire and in some places there are ladders or 'staples' to aid climing. It was originally used in WWI when the austrains and the italians where fighting over the mountains (Dolomites), so there is a lot of interesting history with it and in places you can still see the original wooden walkways/platforms/etc. There's also lots of tunnels, trenches and gun placements that where dug out from the rock during the war. These days the via ferrata is used as a means of getting into and across the high mountains without the need for full mountaineering/climbing equipment/experience.

All geared up for our first go at via ferrata:

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So just an easy one to start with:

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Next one was a bit steeper and a lot looser:

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The following day we got even more adventurous and done this one as part of a big mountain route:

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Still some snow in the gullies:

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Then me and just a couple of the others went up another grade and done this one too:

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Some WWI tunnels inside the top of this mountain:

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Lots of WWI tunnels at in this mountain:

This one was occupied by both Austrain and Italian troops in tunnels only 1-200 meters apart. The italians tunneled under the austrains and blew up the tunnels taking out a huge section of the mountain, the austrains had heard them tunneling and had evacuated before it blew.

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After a week of exercise walking and climbing in the mountains we went for a couple of days R&R in Venice. Couldn't afford to stay there any longer :o

Arriving in venice by water taxi:

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Doing the usual tourist sights...

Rialto bridge:

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The Basilica:

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The Campanile:

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Roof of the Basilica from the top of the Campanile:

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St Marks square from the top of the Campanile:

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Some venice roof tops from the top of the Campanile:

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The Basilica again:

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Rush hour:

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Bridge of sighs:

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Right that lot should have bored you all enough now :)

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Guest diesel_jim

St Marks square is nice isn't it? we stayed in a hotel that was right in the corner of it, so you could hear all the pi$$heads shouting at night! :rolleyes:

helluva view from the tower though! glad there are lifts in it!!!

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The via ferrata is one of the main reason we wen to the area we did, stayed just outside Cortina.

You really need some climbing/alpine experience and a bit of rope handling experience for all but the most basic via ferrata. Everyone in our group had at least some some climbing experience and some of us much more including winter/alpine mountaineering experience. We also carried a couple of short (20m) lengths of rope and a bit of climbing gear as you can get into some pretty serious (and exposed :o ) situations and you do come across one or two sections of poorly protected route, either no wire by design or damaged/worn section. We used a rope once and a selection of long slings on a two occassions.

But saying all that if you have the experince, a head for heights and a bit of basic kit you can have a very enjoyable day out in the mountains and get into situations that would normally require a lot more skill/experince/time/climbing equipment. And if you are less experinced then there's the option of guided trips.

I certainly want to go back and do more, maybe multi day routes getting right up into the big mountain ridges.

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