La Sportiva Epic Ski Tour

Just returned from the La Sportiva Epic Ski Tour in the Dolomites. It’s 3 fairly short but intense ski mountaineering races over 3 days, with your position based on your cumulative time. The first race on friday evening was an out and out fitness test. Climbing about 550m up a pretty straight track in the woods and skiing down a floodlight red / blue run. Race 2 on saturday morning was a more technical 750m climb with plenty of kick turns and a much more difficult off piste downhill in breakable crust. Race 3, curtailled a bit by the weather, was a two lap race. Each lap was 400m downhill including a high speed and very committed traverse ending in hideous huge off piste bumps and then a semi technical climb through the woods back up again. Although each race was quite short it was great to race on 3 consecutive days. The races were very professionally organised and well marshalled. As you would expect in Italy there was food and drink after each race. Thanks to Lyon Equipment and La Sportiva for supporting us.

To make a weeks holiday out of it we spent monday – thursday doing day tours. We stopped the first night in a truck park on the Austrian side of the Brenner Pass. A quick web search found the site Bergfex.comNot a site I’ve used before but it does have a library of user uploaded ski tours with brief descriptions. We downloaded GPX files for a couple of local day tours. Without a proper computer I couldn’t upload them to my GPS but I could open them as text files on my phone. I manually entered every 10th waypoint or so to give us a rough outline of the route and help us locate the exact starting point. If you are ever stuck for a bit of local info then this method worked pretty well.


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