Does Cinque Torri and Tre Cime Di Lavaredo get your imagination going? Join us exploring mountains, streams, and sky!
The Italian Dolomites, also known as the "Pale Mountains" forms part of the Southern Limestone Alps and is high on most photographers' wishlists. The area is rich in history as it was here the front line between the Italian and Austro-Hungarian forces ran during the First World War.
The area takes its name from the sedimentary carbonate rock dolomite, which also gives it its unique colour. Warm pale cliffs tower into the sky giving some of the most dramatic landscapes in Europe. The most famous towers perhaps being the Cinque Torri and - of course - Tre Cime Di Lavaredo. It is easy to see why this is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Dolomites is rich with food and wine culture and many of the valleys have their own wineries and distilleries producing first-rate Grappa.
Creative Guide & Expedition Leader
Jonas is the founder of Terra Photography Expeditions. He has been a photographer for well over 20 years. He is a certified International Mountain Leader (UIMLA) that has spent a lifetime exploring the world's wild areas. Jonas will be leading the expedition.
Jonas loves working with developing photographers to strengthen their technical foundation and support them to unleach their inner creativity. Jonas achieves this through engaging lectures, educative assignments and hands-on teaching in the field.
More info here.
Morten is a professional time-lapse photographer and YouTube creator based in Oslo, Norway. He works for VJUS, a video production company. Morten teaches time-lapse photography and editing on his YouTube channel. Morten has travelled across the world creating stunning time-lapse videos and landscape photographs.
Morten aims to inspire so that workshop participants find the passion that is needed to create truly stunning time-lapses. Through his humble style of teaching, he enjoys developing time-lapse ideas together with the participants so that they can find their own style of shooting.
Alta Via 1
Alta Via 1 is a 150km trail which runs through the Italian Dolomites. It passes through some of the most dramatic sceneries that the Dolomites has on offer. The path runs south from Lago di Braies to Belluno. Normally about 10 – 15 days are required to complete the full route. Being photographers on a mission, we have picked some of the best parts of the Alta Via 1 to make for five days of incredible trekking and photography, and then we transfer across the Dolomites to finish off with two days at the feet of the Tre Cime Di Lavaredo - making sure we get some of the best landscapes.
Day 1 | Arrival Day - Cortina d'Ampezzo - Refugio Croda da Lago
Our travels together start in Cortina d'Ampezzo, where we will meet for an introductory session over an Italian coffee at our favourite gelateria on Piazza Silvestro Franceschi. After the session, a private transfer will take us up towards Passo Giao, where we will start our trek on a variant of the Alta Via 1. The first hut is Refugio Croda da Lago, situated just next to Lago de Federa. We will spend a comfortable night photographing this beautiful lake and the surrounding mountains at the 9 PM sunset.
Trekking: Approx. 2hrs | Distance 4km | Hight gain/loss +450m/-100m
Day 2 | Refugio Croda da Lago - Rifugio Averau
Lago de Federa is best at sunrise, we will get up early at 5 AM for a 5.30 AM sunrise session before enjoying a hearty breakfast at the hut. Once our bags are packed we are out the door and up towards the mountains. As this is our first full day of trekking we will take it easy making sure everyone is comfortable with the speed as we find our trail legs. We will arrive at Rifugio Averau in the afternoon, and get ready for dinner. After dinner, we will head out and await the sunset. Rifugio Averau is beautifully set in the high mountains and has viewpoints across the entire Dolomites!
Trekking: Approx. 5hrs | Distance 10km | Hight gain/loss +820m/-450m
Day 3 | Rifugio Averau - Rifugio Lagazuoi
By now our morning routine will have been established, we are all out (unless someone fancies a sleep-in) at 5.30 AM photographing the sunrise, enjoy breakfast and then we hit the trails. This day is the longest of the entire expedition and we have 12.7km of breathtaking trails in front of us! There are plenty of shortcuts so we could easily make the day a bit shorter. Rifugio Lagazuoi is situated on a mountainside with views that goes on and on. It is yet another location that is perfect for both sunset and sunrise.
Trekking: Approx. 5-6hrs | Distance 12.7km | Hight gain/loss +1144m/-1033m
Day 4 | Rifugio Lagazuoi - Ütia de Gran Fanes
As we leave Rifugio Lagazuoi behind us some of the best trekking that the Dolomites have to offer awaits! 10km on high mountain plateaus and winding streams as we descend towards the hut. The hut is close to a forest which offers more intimate landscapes than what we have had so far on this expedition. It is beautiful to explore the forests and the streams after several days on the exposed mountains.
Trekking: Approx. 5hrs | Distance 10km | Hight gain/loss +1144m/-1033m
Day 5 | Ütia de Gran Fanes - Resti del Castello Sant'Uberto - Rifugio Auronzo - Rifugio Antonio Locatelli
Ütia de Gran Fanes has been a welcome break from the high mountain sceneries, but it is time that we get back to the peaks! We descend from Ütia de Gran Fanes to a close-by road to meet up with the private transfer that will take us to Rifugio Auronzo. From here we will trek to one of the most well-located huts in the entire Dolomites, the Rifugio Antonio Locatelli. It is time that we get acquainted with the Tre Cime di Lavaredo! We will stay in the hut two nights making sure we all get the best light possible for this iconic location.
Trekking: Approx. 3hrs and 1hrs | Distance 8.6km and 3.5km | Hight gain/loss +355m/-700m
Day 6 | Rifugio Antonio Locatelli - Tre Cime de Lavaredo
We remain at the hut for another night but do a day trek circumnavigating the Tre Cime di Lavaredo. For the travel-weary, this is a good opportunity to get some extra sleep and spend the day at the hut overlooking the Tre Cime di Lavaredo and just contemplate on life.
Trekking: Approx. 5hrs | Distance 8.3km | Hight gain/loss +355m/-355m
Day 7 | Rifugio Antonio Locatelli - Rifugio Auronzo - Cortina d'Ampezzo - Departure
Our final morning session overlooking the majestic Tre Cime di Lavaredo and then we are off. Privat transfer down to Cortina d'Ampezzo and straight to Jonas' favourite Pizzeria for a final lunch. The expedition is officially over after the much-anticipated pizza, but it is highly recommended to have a day or two extra to enjoy Cortina d'Ampezzo before departing the Dolomites.
Trekking: Approx. 1hrs | Distance 3.5km | Hight gain/loss +0m/-355m
All Terra Photography Expeditions follow a proven curriculum that aims to teach the theory behind photography in a dynamic way that directly translates into easily actionable processes in the field. As we move through nature we also go through an introduction to the skills and knowledge required to be safe in the great outdoors.
Photography Techniques Covered on the Expedition
Storytelling - Telling stories and evoking emotions within the context of landscape photography
Composition - A comprehensive introduction to the theory of composition, including the elements of art and principles of design
Process - Learning and implementing a process to achieve a consistent quality in landscape photography
Focussing - A science based method for focusing to make your images sharp
Long exposure and filters - Long exposure and the use of Neutral Density (ND) filters, especially related to moving water and clouds
Night photography - Explore the nighttime skies and landscapes to show the world at a different time
Panorama photography - exposing and merging multiple images
Multiple exposure and graduate filters - Achieving correctly exposed images in challenging conditions using graduated filters and multiple exposures (exposure bracketing)
Finding locations - Using maps, weather services and other tools to identify potential photography locations and times
Time-Lapse Photography - Using motorised sliders to create depth. Manage to shoot sunrise and sunset time-lapses. Skills for scouting landscapes for time-lapse purposes
Outdoor Skills Covered on the Expedition
We are first and foremost out to enjoy the mountains and to pursue the art of photography, however, as we are moving toward our locations there is always time to share some outdoor skills.
Planning for a day out in the mountains in ever changing conditions
Using safety equipment and emergency transponders
Navigation with map and compass
Relocation with map and compass
Using sighting for fast movement
What it means to be a leader in the outdoors
Group management skills
Environmental and Local Ethos
The entire expedition is delivered with a strong ethos for the protection of the environment where we will endeavour to leave as small a footprint as possible. We only use local suppliers for the expedition in an effort to contribute to local communities and economy.
The weather in the mountains can change rapidly one hour to the next, so even though we have a planned agenda, this will be open to revision on the day. Each day we will study the weather forecast and the local maps over coffee to plan our day.
We will be in the Dolomites area at the beginning of the summer season, which often gives good and stable weather. We can expect pleasant highs of around 20°C at day time and down to lows of around 4°C at night time.
Sunrise is at approx 5.30 AM and sunset at 9 PM throughout the expedition.
All main meals are included. As is a tradition when staying in mountain huts, we will be eating the daily menus at the mountain huts and receive packed lunches to bring on the trails. It is recommended that you bring an extra 300-600 calories in dried fruit/nuts/energy bars per day to eat whilst on the trail (please purchase this locally to support the local economy).
Leave No Trace Policy
Terra Photography Expeditions has a strict leave no trace policy. This policy is also applied to how we share information about fragile ecosystems that we gently and respectfully visit. This means that we have withheld exact locations from the itinerary. This is because we do not want to contribute to large scale tourism to this pristine and seldom visited place by sharing these. Our expedition participants can receive detailed information via e-mail. You are welcome to get in touch if you'd like to discuss the itinerary before applying to join. Thank you for your understanding.
How to get to Cortina d'Ampezzo
The easiest way to get to Cortina d'Ampezzo bus station is by flight to Venice Marco Polo Airport and then catching the Cortina Express bus to Cortina d’Ampezzo bus station. (For further information, see www.cortinaexpress.it)
This expedition is structured around huts situated high up in the mountains. This means that we will trek from one hut to another each day of the expedition. This gives us a great opportunity to stay on a different location each sunrise and sunset, allowing us to be high in the mountains whilst still enjoying the comforts of a hut. Staying in mountain huts is a great experience but be prepared for dormitory-style sleeping as there are no other options available!
Price & Details
Guided photography sessions
Guided treks by qualified International Mountain Leader or Mountain Guide
All accommodation during the expedition: 6 nights in a dormitory
All main meals
Planned transport during the tour
Transport (i.e. flights to Venice airport)
Insurance. All participants are required to have their own insurance appropriate for hiking in the alps, such as health, accident, mountain rescue, repatriation, cancellation, personal liability, etc.
Trail snack to eat on the go
Price: 3195 EUR
30% deposit due to secure your reservation, remaining 70% due 60 days before the start of the expedition. Single occupancy not possible. Excl. VAT, where applicable.
Start: Cortina d'Ampezzo bus station, 3 Jul 2022, 10 AM
End: Cortina d'Ampezzo bus station, 9 Jul 2022, 2 PM
We reserve the right to change the itinerary without previous notice due to weather conditions, and unforeseeable circumstances.
This tour is governed by the Terms and Conditions