Stoneman Taurista vs. the original Stoneman Dolomiti
The Stoneman Taurista has already started its 6th season this year. On the occasion of this "event" I would like to report on my experiences and compare them with the original Stoneman Dolomiti. There are Stoneman trails in five countries: Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, the original Stoneman in Italy and ours in the Salzburger Sportwelt, the Stoneman Taurista. First the hard facts about the Stoneman Taurista: 123 kilometres, 4500 metres of altitude difference and a unique panorama that rewards. The original Stoneman Doolmiti is 120 kilometres long and 4000 metres in altitude.
Basically, you get gripped by the Stoneman fever and want to "tick them off" one after the other.
On the Dolomiti excursion, I was on the road once again with my brother-in-law in the border area between Austria-Italy. In the meantime, we have both "switched" to 29er hardtails with modern components. We tackled the route from Sillian. The final part of the climb to the Sillianerhütte can be compared to the climb to the Oberhütte. Every now and then you still have to descend to make progress. Then comes the humble passage with a constant view of the 3 peaks as far as Padola in Italy. The route then continues on the opposite side of the valley over the Kreuzpass back to Sexten. Finally, there is the ascent to Markinkele (2,545 metres above sea level), then you're done and only the downhill descent back to Sillian awaits.
In terms of effort, we remember the Stoneman Taurista as being somewhat more demanding. This impression is also given by the bare facts & figures (Taurista: 123 kilometres with 4,500 metres of altitude, Dolomiti: 120 km with 4,000 hm) reflect this. In terms of scenery, both are very breathtaking. On the Taurista the Hochkönig, Hagen and Tennen mountains, the Dachstein, the Hohe Tauern with Mosermandl and Faulkogel are constant companions. The central massif of the Dolomiti is of course the Three Peaks. The impressions you gather throughout the day are the same on both routes. You are on the move quickly, make sure you drink and eat enough - at some point, muesli bars and electrolyte drinks just don't taste the same anymore, and the numerous refreshment stops along the route entice you in! Furthermore, the hope of getting through without a puncture is a constant companion. In addition, you are always happy about the distance you have already covered. Breaks at the beginning are kept short, as there is still a lot of distance and altitude to cover. The nearer you get to the goal, the easier you can take it. Nevertheless, you make an effort to "press on" quickly in order to have a little "breathing space", i.e. a certain amount of time to spare.
This year the Stoneman Miriquidi is planned in the border area of the Erzgebirge (DE/CZ). Let's see how we're doing :) - once you've been infected by Stoneman fever, there's no stopping you!
Do you feel like tackling the Stoneman Taurista now? You can find out more about it here: stoneman-taurista.com and at https://www.facebook.com/StonemanTaurista. Follow the Stoneman on Instagram: @stoneman.spirit
One thing is certain: the experience is fantastic, the effort is rewarded with many views and impressions. Go for it!
photo credits: Hannes Rieser