Monte Rite is a high mountain pass at an elevation of 2.183m (7,162ft) above the sea level, located in Comune di Valle di Cadore (Italy). The pass belongs to the Dolomites-Alps. The last part of the road is closed to motorized vehicles.
The road to reach the summit is an old military dirt track. It starts from Passo Cibiana. On the summit, there’s the Museum in the Clouds. The museum illustrates the process of the conquest of the Dolomites – with reference to those natural scientists and mountaineers who wrote alpine history with their discoveries, new routes and first ascents. At the heart of the museum there is a big gallery housing a collection of unique paintings of the Dolomites, from the Romantic period up to today. Annual exhibitions are also held. The plateau at the summit offers a 360° panorama of the most spectacular mountains in the Dolomites.
The surface of the road is gravel and rocky. This stretch of road should not be attempted by novice drivers. For the military strategists at the beginning of the 20th century, Monte Rite was an ideal position for the Italian line of defence against the Austro-Hungarian Emperor Franz Josef, and a fort was constructed at the summit in 1912-14. Then came the 1st World War. The fort was well built and withstood a number of attempts to blow it up by both armies. It later offered shelter to partisans and, after the 2nd World War, served as a village storehouse.
The road is open daily from June to 30 September. From 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. in June and from the middle of September; from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. in July, August and up to the middle of September. To get there, by car, take the Brenner-Modena motorway (A22), exit at Brixen or Klausen in the direction of the Dolomite passes, pass through Cortina d’Ampezzo and take road no. SS51 as far as Cibiana di Cadore. Venice-Belluno motorway (A27), take the exit for Cadore and road no. SS51 as far as Cibiana di Cadore. Car park at Passo Cibiana. Shuttle bus to the museum or follow the path (2 hours’ walk).
Pic: martin damo