Cortina d’Ampezzo | My Mountain, by ski champ Silvia Moser

person highlining at top of Dolomite mountains at sunset

How long have you lived in Cortina d’Ampezzo?

All my life. I spent a few winter seasons in France years ago to work as a ski instructor, but my home base will always be Cortina.

Why base yourself here?

Because there is no place like this for me. I have travelled a lot and Cortina remains the best place to live for my passion for the mountains. It might not be the resort known for the most amount of snowfall, but my eyes and body never get tired of this place.

Tell us about your first experience of summer here…

When I was a kid, I would spend my summers in Venezuela, as my mom grew up there, and then I’d return to Cortina each winter to train for ski alpine competitions (which, in theory, you never stop training for). Then, when I started climbing, I would spend my summers here in Cortina, climbing around with my friends or highlining (a slackline discipline that is practiced at great heights), and often, a combination of both!

How would your ideal summer’s day be spent?

I love multi-activity days. So the perfect day in summer would be a combination of my two favourite activities, which are climbing and highlining, with a bike approach or a swim in the lake if I’m lucky. Just thinking about it makes me excited for summertime! My perfect summer day wouldn’t be complete without good company too, because the activities I like require a rope partner at least to take part.

What is your favourite climbing route and why?

This is something I haven’t thought about before, but if I had to choose I’d pick the Spigolo Jori in the Pomagagnon mountains surrounding Cortina. It’s the first multi-pitch route I did when I started climbing and it’s one that I love doing with friends. It’s a very nice route in that is not too difficult, but is still nicely exposed in a Dolomitic environment and allows for a long day in the mountains.

How do you relax here in summer?

I love relaxing by taking care of my veggie garden mostly– I love to work the ‘land’, and I enjoy cooking, too. Also, going for a hike with a good book in my backpack and maybe a dip in a lake or river. My favourite wild swimming spot is Lake Federa, with its close up views of the Croda da Lago mountain chain.

Tell us something we don’t know about the place…

There is a very solid and historical group called Regole, which you can only be a part of if you have parental roots from Cortina (with your last name). They have the control of the land care and many regulations within the valley. It is a ‘power’ that was given by the King, so is a very historical and recognised organisation here.

What’s good to eat in Cortina d’Ampezzo?

Everything! We have a high quality of restaurants and food here. The traditional Casunziei (beetroot-stuffed ravioli) are an absolute must – everyone needs to know about these.

Favourite après-hike bar in Cortina d’Ampezzo?

I love the mountain huts, and there are actually more of them than bars here! A favourite hut of mine is Averau, located under the rocky spears of Averau peak (2,649m) – it has beautiful views and serves excellent home-made pasta. There is a nice bar at the local climbing gym, called Cortina 360, which is great for the climbing community and has a great vibe.