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Themes:     Nature & Environment (51)    Sport & Health (31)  
Tags:    Beauty     Landscapes
Francesco Ricci Saturday, 25 June 2016

The secret world of Mondeval

Marco and Linda are more than just guides, they are great companions: they will lead you step by step to discover the remotest and therefore the most fascinating parts of the Dolomites.
The secret world of Mondeval
"Marco moves between the tables in the evening to sound out the wishes of the guests who want to join an excursion for the following day. It must be said that with Marco you can’t go wrong."
I have been walking the mountain tracks of the Dolomites for many years. Since I was a child. And then as a boy following the high paths which today, to tell the truth, are somewhat forgotten. The amazing thing is that even knowing valleys, peaks, trails, shelters, woods, paths there is always something unexpected to discover. Or to see with new eyes, different moods, another light. Among the many nice things Ciasa Perla has to offer during the summer is the willingness of Marco and Linda to show you the lesser known, more fascinating parts of the Dolomites.
Marco moves between the tables in the evening to sound out the wishes of the guests who want to join an excursion for the following day. It must be said that with Marco you can’t go wrong. More than a mere guide he is a connoisseur: of places and valleys soaked in history. If you want to find out something about the tragic events related to the First World War, Marco is your man. He knows everything. And above all, knows how to be your guide. One evening in September, the decision is made: the day after the group sets off from the Val Formin heading for the fork in the road, which bears the same name, leading to the magical atmosphere of Mondeval. The Val Formin is a most substantial hors d’oeuvre indeed.
Dominated by the massif of the Croda da Lago, the air we breathe here is pure Dolomite, spreading first through the woods and then among the rocks. Approaching the fork Marco decides to make a detour. We head off to the right and reach the borders of the valley: below us is the precipice, in front of us the whole world. Chamois scatter before us, first one group and then another. The view is overwhelming. The clouds play hide and seek with the distant peaks and we play at recognizing them. The peaks, that is. The grey sky descends telling us we should not linger.
We pass the turn off for Formin and begin a descent that is a door into another world: the world of Mondeval. Even the name is a promise of wonder: and there before us a wide plateau stretches out, bounded by the Becco di Mezzodì, the Pelmo massif , the Rocchette, the Croda da Lago, the Lastoni of Formin, Mount Cernera and the Corvo Alto. But it's the atmosphere that you breathe that makes this place unique. I was here as a boy before Mondeval Man had been discovered. But if ever there were remote places in the world where amazing discoveries could be made, this is one! Here everything is primordial energy. The boulders scattered over the grass, as if they had cropped up there thousands of years ago, are electric. The amphitheatre of the mountains, with the lonely Becco di Mezzodì to act as sentinel, frames an atavistic proscenium that cannot leave us indifferent. Only in the Tassili degli Ajjer of south-eastern Algeria have I felt similar emotions.
And it was in these pastures at two thousand metres altitude that was unearthed the tomb of a prehistoric hunter who lived about seven thousand years ago. Beside the skeleton, placed in a supine position, the archaeologists found a large quantity of objects of chipped stone, utensils and ornaments made of bone, deer teeth and mixed in with the earth, numerous fragments of animal bones. The Mondeval huntsman is now housed at the Museum of Selva di Cadore, and is certainly worth a visit. Mondeval definitely merits a visit, it is easily reached from the Passo Giau. Because it is one of those places where it is easier to understand why going to the mountains is like coming home, and that nature is not a luxury, but a necessity.

The secret world of Mondeval
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