Ortler ski tour #2 • March 18 - 24, 2009

For our second Ortler trip this year turned out to be a "couples trip". We were joined by Marcus and Diana Collie from Ireland (see their January training trip with us at the Col du Passon); Christine Burnell and Ken Uphoff from Washington state; and Diane and George Ciavola from Vermont.

Other Recent Trips

Sunny but again cold weather turns up for our launch. We wait for the ski bus outside our hotel in Sulden.


Skipping ahead to day 2, we once again have the cold wind in our faces as we skin up toward Cevedale from the Marteller hut.


And once again, conditions proving un-conducive to an ascent, we hoof it over the Col del Cevedale, playing it safe.


The next morning at the Branca hut, we are bundled up and ready to head out for Pizzo Tresero.


The toe of the glacier sports a fascinating arch-way this year, well worth the short detour to check it out.


A good place to admire the textures and colors of the bowels of a glacier, without having to lower down into a crevasse! Still, pausing even briefly under so many tons of ice gives one a minor case of the willies. A quick shot, and we scoot through the tunnel back to the safety of the sunshine.


Visibility is great, and the sun almost warm during brief respites from our nearly constant companion, the wind!


Nearing the top.


The wind-scoured slopes made us glad we had practiced our kick-turns so thoroughly! We finally near the summit ridge.


Beautiful! But so cold! We paused only briefly on top before heading down again.


Ken doesn't mind the cold! He has his wind-proofing on.


Back in the hut, the cold and challenges of the mountain are almost forgotten, as we enjoy the views of them from the dining room windows.


We battle yet another biting wind, heading this time toward the Col Pale Rosse.


We brace ourselves against the gusts.


Our last day before heading out, we take advantage of the relatively clement weather to climb Monte Cevedale from the Pizzini hut.


Views closed in on the summit, but we had a rewarding climb anyway!


The good thing about changeable weather is that, well, it changes! Heading back down to the hut, we go looking for snow that is "... decent...". And we find it! It holds our weight, that's all we ask of it.


On our way home, we once again fight our way through blizzard conditions to the Col del Cevedale and a wee rest out of the storm at the Rifugio Casati.


And once again, by the time we are outside once more, the weather has changed again. Still windy and cold, but at least we can see where we're going! We scoot over a shoulder of the Cima di Solda, and onto the Sulden glacier.


Still battling, we are warmed by the prospect of a good meal, comfy bed and clean town clothes down at the hotel. It's just around the corner now...