Be prepared for some of the most breathtaking trails you’ve ever run (due to their beauty and elevation) while being pampered in some of the most luxurious four-star hotels of Sud-Tyrol. You’ll run the trails of the Pale Mountains, as the Dolomites are known, a UNESCO World Heritage Site preserved for its stunning natural beauty with an amazing group of women who, like you, run because of how it makes them feel: strong, calm, enchanted and free.
Blah. Blah. Blah.
Did you just experience Deja Vu? Have you seen this same description by another tour “company”? YOU’RE NOT CRAZY! (Well, maybe you’re crazy, but not because of what you’re feeling right now...)
Imitation is the best form of flattery. We at Holimites are proud to have designed this trail running program, and we are flattered that international guides called our offices with a flurry of questions (what can we say, we love sharing our local knowledge!) only to then copy our program, mile for mile..
Why come to the Dolomites and run with an international guide? Come to the Dolomites and let us, the locals, be your host. Pay an honest price (nearly half the price of the imitators) while we pamper you on this amazing trail running adventure with true local hospitality and insider knowledge that was earned over generations of exploration and history.
We won’t bombard you with “trail running technique clinics” at the end of each day to justify a higher cost. We will let you enjoy your holiday by relaxing at the spa, or reminiscing with friends over a glass of wine at one of our magical mountain huts.
Length 6 nights
Arrival Venice Arrivals:
we ask that you book your flight to arrive before noon, otherwise arrive the day before. We will rendez-vous at the Venice Marco Polo Airport at 12:30 p.m., then meet our driver for the approx. 3-hour drive to Val Badia. Upon arrival, we will check into our rooms and have some time to freshen up before the first Aperitivo :-) and briefing with the guide. Overnight in a typical Mountain village of the Val Badia
Run time: no run today
2nd day - Val Badia Forest Run:
After breakfast at the hotel, we will meet for our first group trail run of approximately 9 miles on a mix of trails from forested paths to rolling singletrack. We’ll finish back in the village in time for lunch, followed by free time to enjoy the spa. Afterwards we’ll enjoy an Aperitivo before an other fabulous dinner at the hotel.
Run time: approx. 3 – 3.5 hours on rolling valley trails that avoid any major ascending or descending. The trail surface is mostly crushed gravel and worn dirt trails, at times rooty without being overly technical. No exposure to high terrain today.
3rd day - On the Alta Via one trail:
After breakfast at the hotel, we’ll check out of our rooms and set aside the luggage for transfer to our next hotel. At 9:00 a.m., private transfer to Tamersc / Pederü, then begin an adventurous point-to-point high alpine run along the Alta Via 1 trail through the Fanes Plateau. Most of our uphill gain is in the first 1.5 to 2 hours of today’s run. After the wonderful run through the Fanes Plateau we’ll descend a series of switchbacks, and hop on the bus for the ride to our hotel in Corvara. We’ll arrive at mid-afternoon, at which time you are free to explore the village before dinner. Overnight in Corvara.
Run time: 3 to 4 hours on mountain trails (i.e., sometimes rocky) with exposure to heights, long uphills and long downhills.
4th day - Corvara to Pralongià:
After breakfast at the hotel, we take the Col Alt Gondola up to the starting point for today’s point-to-point “recovery” run of around 2 to 3 hours (including breaks). Today’s run is at a lower elevation on relatively smooth footpaths, so we can gaze out at the mountains without having to watch the footing so closely. We’ll enjoy a rolling route that takes us to Ütia Pralongià before the long descent to Corvara, finishing at our hotel. After lunch in the village, enjoy some free time to explore the town or enjoy a spa treatment. Dinner & Overnight in Corvara.
Run time: 2 to 3 hours (including breaks) on wide dirt paths and some steep, rooty singletrack trails.
5th day - Corvara to Val Gardena (Part of Alta Via 2):
After breakfast, pack your luggage and set it aside to be transferred to Selva. Then we’ll drive up to Passo Gardena, where we’ll begin today’s trail run along the Alta Via 2 trail. This high-alpine singletrack trail takes us through a barren rocky landscape surrounded by limestone peaks and features a long, steep descent down a narrow rocky trail to the beautiful, lush green Val Lungia. The last portion of today’s run is a beautiful descent through the Val Lungia along a smooth, easy trail that will take us straight to our hotel in Selva. After checking into our rooms, enjoy some free time to explore the village, enjoy the spa and relax before dinner. Overnight in Selva.
Run time 4 – 5 hours on a mix of dirt and gravel trails, at time on very steep, exposed alpine terrain. You must be comfortable in this environment to complete this run.
Alternate run: Take the gondola down to Selva and do an easier out-and-back run along the flat, gravel path trails of the Vallunga Langetal with relatively little elevation change.
6th day - Puez-Odle Nature Park:
After breakfast, we’ll board the bus and have a 10-minute bus ride to St. Christina where we take the gondola to Col Raiser. Here we enjoy a beautiful loop through the beautiful green pastures of Puez Odle Nature Park. At the 5-mile point, you can choose to take the gondola back down and hop on the bus to the hotel, or run down the mountain for 3 miles (this is a lot of downhill and only recommended if you feel good and have no knee pain), finishing at our hotel. We’ll enjoy lunch followed by some free time to relax, enjoy the spa or shop before dinner. Overnight in Selva.
Run time: 2 – 3.5 hours (including breaks) on well-worn dirt paths, at times rocky, but always rolling uphill/downhill.
5th day - Transfer to Venice:
This morning we’ll have breakfast around 8.30 – 9.00 a.m After checking out of your hotel room and loading your luggage into the van, at 10.30 a.m. we board the van for our private transfer to the airport, arriving at the Venice Marco Polo Airport around 3:30 p.m. (this arrival time is not guaranteed and is dependent on traffic volumes. Please plan your travel accordingly).
Optional Free Run before breakfast: 30 minutes out-and-back on mellow dirt trails and village roads.
The total run distance for this retreat will be between approximately 42 and 50 miles. Each day’s run in this itinerary is represented by time spent on the trail rather than miles run because the mileage covered will depend largely on your run pace. Faster runners will cover more mileage than slower runners on some days. These run times include breaks to enjoy the views, take photos, eat and drink. The precise route and trails run may change due to changes to trail closures, weather conditions, guide recommendations and other safety considerations.
Note that the footing in the alpine trails can be challenging at times, and you will be exposed to heights, rocky, loose rocky trails and narrow mountain trails. For these reasons, this retreat is for experienced trail runners only.
Starting mid June until October
KEEP IT PRIVATE
Do you want to reserve one of our guided tours exclusively for you and your group of friends? Is your own crew so fun and delightful that you don’t need to add any strangers to the mix? Choose any tour that you like, contact us and remember to tell us how many people are in your group. We will send you a personalized quote based on the number of participants.
ESCORTED TOUR 2020
INCLUDED IN THE PRICE
NOT INCLUDED IN THE PRICE
Upon special request for small groups, we can also accommodate additional dates from those listed, depending on availability.
Frequently asked questions (FAQ)
What is Trail Running?
Rather than a discipline, Trail Running is equal parts a philosophy, a sport and a way of life. It dilutes the hectic thrum life to its simplest rhythm. Moving across the mountains--unencumbered and with primal athleticism--one experiences the mountains both as a visitor looking outward as well as an athlete looking inside oneself. Trail Running allows one to explore nature on their own terms, allowing the runner to use their fitness as a path to discovery, while traveling to some of the most beautiful and secluded places on the planet.
Do we have to be able to run uninterrupted to participate?
The Holimites trail running trips are on mountain trails, and most runners will hike portions of each stage, however, as a participant in a group trail run, you will be expected to maintain a certain pace in order to finish the scheduled stages. If your legs are shutting down or your fitness is interfering with the group’s ability to make cut offs, your tour escort may decide you need to alter your daily route. In this case, you will have an array of options so that you can continue your trip at a more relaxed speed:
a) to take a rest day and shuttle with the service van, to the next hut where the group is headed for that stage
b) to take a shuttle and 'bump up' to the last hotel, where you can finish your vacation going on suggested trail runs from that location.
Given our considerable years of experience with trail running groups, here are a few statistics to help you gauge how much hiking you should expect: if you run marathons under 3 hours, on average you can run 70% of each stage; if you take 3 to 3.5 hours = 50%; 3.5 to 4.5 hours = 40%.
Is training necessary?
Yes, it is absolutely necessary to be well trained. Sore legs, blisters, or other ailments related to running after the first stage can possibly ruin the entire week for someone. We suggest training programs with runs between 10 to 15 km (6 to 10 miles), 4 times a week, on unpaved terrain.
I'm in a good shape, have trained and can run the stages. Are the stages well marked?
For liability reasons, you won’t be able to leave the group and wait at the finish for each day. But you also don't need to stay with the group if you want to run faster. If you’d like to run ahead and wait for the group, or do an out-an-back, your tour escort will help you plan meeting points at key intersections each day.
What specific clothing do you recommend?
For trail running in good weather, we suggest you always carry a light hydration pack and a few layers such as a light insulated jacket, gloves and a hat. Always keep in mind that the weather in the mountains can quickly change. We suggest packing some warmer clothing in addition to this minimum suggestion. These items can be left in your bag that we will transfer for you from hotel to hotel each day.
I have some Issues with elevation, is that a problem?
The runs vary between 1,500 and 2,300 meters of altitude (between 4,900 and 7,500 feet) each day. If you have a history of trouble with high elevations, please consult a doctor or medical professional for their expert opinion before booking this trip.
What about having lunch in the mountains?
For lunch we will stop in one of the huts to taste some traditional food or be back in town.