17. Kreuzjoch-Lake Braies with Furcia Trail
This Furcia-Fojedöra tour is like a small “tour of the valley”.
Start from the Bike Hotel Alpenblick ****s by car until you reach Villabassa/train station (1,150). From here, the bike tour heads for Valdaora di sopra and continues to the “Gassl”, where the cable car takes you up to the Plan de Corones (2,270). The flowing Furcia Trail starts at the mountain station, a fun prelude to “loosen up” for the subsequent steep climbs. At the end of the “Furcia Trail” is where it gets down to business: short downhill ride, then turn left onto a sand road, underneath the lift and down towards San Vigilio di Marebbe. Head towards Fojedöra and the gravel road in the forest becomes increasingly steep up into the lonely valley. The steepness quickly brings you up high but it also takes a lot of effort until the path above around 2,000 m is so steep that barely anybody will still be able to remain in their saddle. So, around 30 minutes of pushing up to the Kreuzjoch (2,283). This deserves a well-earned rest and you can enjoy the beautiful views. A beautiful, flat trail (no. 24) leads you from the Kreuzjoch over into Val Larici. You must take care in several exposed passages (risk of falling); after entering Val Larici the lovely flat section ends beneath the Garcia pass and it branches steeply to the left, follow route no. 25 to Lake Braies. The first approx. 150 m of difference in altitude are very steep, if you don’t want to damage the ground or are not that technically savvy, then you are better pushing. Then the mountain track levels out again and is easy to negotiate; crossing a large field of boulders gives you a “desert feeling” and loosens the ride up a little before you reach the green valley along a beautiful meadow trail near the Alte Kaser (1,751). A road starts again from here past the Malga Foresta hut (1,590) to the magnificently located Lake Braies. On the shores of the lake continue to the Lake Braies Hotel, after passing a bridge immediately left on a forest trail initially full of roots down into the valley. This route becomes increasingly better and wider and leads onto a sandy road where you can continue cycling into the valley. The tarmacked road is then reached, taking you past the forges and from there back to the starting point at Villabassa.