Last week in a post, I reminisced about tropical climes during a long-ago visit to Bali, Indonesia.

But I realize my pre-Corona virus nostalgia also extends to days spent out on the slopes. Here in Italy (and throughout most of Europe), ski slopes have been closed since last year.

After almost a year of impossible or restricted travel, not surprising that my mind is often wandering to those halcyon days zipping along stunning ski slopes. And even less surprising that these memories often return me (vicariously, at least) to the stunning Dolomites in northern Italy’s Trentino-Alto Adige/ Süd Tirol region.

A few years ago in February, I took a holiday here with my family, staying in Val Gardena.

We loved this week of skiing and jaw-dropping mountain beauty.

Every day we would rise early, have a hearty breakfast and then get out early to hit the slopes before the big crowds arrived. The entire day would be spent exploring new slopes in different valleys.

Val Gardena, Dolomites, Italy / Kimberly Sullivan

The great thing about the Val Gardena (and adjoining valleys) is that they are all connected through the 42-kilometer loop – the Sella ronda – that runs in two directions and delivers you to countless series of trails, chairlifts and gondolas.

With access to so many kilometers of trails, our days were long and exhausting, and we did our very best to explore as many valleys as possible during our one-week stay.

We would return each evening with sore muscles, ready to jump into the sauna and the jacuzzi to regain energy to take on the next day.

Val Gardena, Dolomites, Italy / Kimberly Sullivan

Pure heaven.

Not surprising that those long-ago carefree days seem so idyllic now.

Here’s to returning to those (pre-pandemic) days of freedom, to piling in side-by-side with a gondola full of strangers to be whisked up to the top of mountain peaks, to the stunning beauty of the mountains and valleys as you’re plummeting down the trails.

Look forward to seeing you again on the slopes! Until then, here’s to the memories.

Val Gardena, Dolomites, Italy / Kimberly Sullivan
Val Gardena, Dolomites, Italy / Kimberly Sullivan
Val Gardena, Dolomites, Italy / Kimberly Sullivan
Val Gardena, Dolomites, Italy / Kimberly Sullivan
Val Gardena, Dolomites, Italy / Kimberly Sullivan