Alpine Shelter.

Monte Cristallo’s Historic Alpine Shelter: A Breathtaking Relic from World War I

Discover Italy's Sky-High Alpine Treasure Nestled in the Dolomites!


Hidden within the Italian Dolomites’ soaring peaks lies an extraordinary piece of history that few are aware of – an alpine shelter perched at an astonishing 2,760 meters above sea level. Constructed during World War I, this remarkable refuge on Monte Cristallo in Auronzo di Cadore, Italy, has withstood the test of time, providing a glimpse into the past while offering breathtaking panoramic views of the surrounding landscape.

The Historic Alpine Shelter on Monte Cristallo

Built during the tumultuous years of World War I, the alpine shelter on Monte Cristallo serves as a testament to human ingenuity and resilience. Erected amidst a challenging terrain and harsh weather conditions, the shelter played a crucial role in providing refuge to soldiers during the war. Today, it remains a fascinating destination for history buffs and adventure enthusiasts alike.

The Magnificent Monte Cristallo

Monte Cristallo is an impressive mountain range situated within the Dolomites, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in northeastern Italy. Boasting four summits that exceed 3,000 meters in elevation, Monte Cristallo’s long, indented ridge offers stunning vistas and challenging terrain, attracting climbers and hikers from around the world.

Auronzo di Cadore: A Picturesque Gateway

Nestled in the heart of the Italian Dolomites, the charming town of Auronzo di Cadore serves as the perfect starting point for exploring Monte Cristallo’s historic alpine shelter. Rich in natural beauty and cultural heritage, Auronzo di Cadore offers a wide range of recreational activities and amenities, from serene lakeside strolls to exhilarating mountain biking trails.


Constructing the Alpine Shelter: A Feat of Engineering

The construction of the Monte Cristallo alpine shelter during World War I was a remarkable engineering accomplishment. Workers had to overcome numerous obstacles, including transporting materials and supplies to the construction site at 2,760 meters above sea level. Despite these challenges, the alpine shelter was successfully built and has remained standing for over a century, showcasing the determination and skill of those involved in its creation.

Exploring the Alpine Shelter Today

Today, the Monte Cristallo alpine shelter remains accessible to visitors, offering a unique historical experience combined with awe-inspiring views of the surrounding Dolomites. The shelter can be reached by hiking or climbing, with several well-marked trails and routes available for those willing to give it a go. Those who make the trek are rewarded with not only a tangible connection to World War I history but also an unforgettable visual spectacle.

Ascending Monte Cristallo requires climbers to navigate a precarious wooden staircase scattered with loose rocks and traverse a path of unstable wooden planks. Observers from the mountain’s base may perceive climbers as precariously balanced on a narrow ridge, susceptible to losing their footing and tumbling over the edge with even the slightest gust of wind.

Preserving a Piece of History

Efforts have been made to preserve the Monte Cristallo alpine shelter as a historical and cultural landmark. Its continued existence provides valuable insight into the challenges faced by soldiers during World War I, and stands as a symbol of human perseverance. Visitors to the shelter are encouraged to respect and help maintain this important piece of history for future generations to experience.


Monte Cristallo’s alpine shelter is a remarkable testament to human ingenuity and resilience, standing tall amidst the breathtaking beauty of the Italian Dolomites. The shelter offers visitors a unique opportunity to step back in time while surrounded by some of the world’s most stunning natural landscapes. Whether you are a history enthusiast, a mountain lover, or simply seeking a one-of-a-kind adventure, the alpine shelter on Monte Cristallo is a destination you won’t want to miss.

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Written by Justin Gurkinic

Hey, my name is Justin, and my friends call me Gurk. Why? Becuase of my last name. It sounds like a vegetable. Kind of. I love sleeping and writing. History is my thing.

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