The idea to sleep in a hammock suspended hundreds of feet above the ground in such an incredible place was born back in 2012 at the very first Highline Meeting held on Monte Piana, a peak of 2.324 meters.
The event was founded by Alessandro d‘Emilia and Armin Holzer, two highliners who wanted to share the spectacular scenery of Monte Piana (Misurina) in the Dolomites, giving professionals and enthusiasts from all over the world the chance to slackline between mountain peaks, hang out in hammocks strung high in the sky, and meet like-minded people.
This year the place where d‘Emilia, Holzer and action coordinator Igor Scotland from Ticket to the Moon hammocks built their set up was memorable not only for its natural beauty but for its particular historical importance. One century ago, fierce battles broke out in the shadow of Monte Piana in the Italian Dolomites as WWI began, and today the area is an open air museum to honor the memory of the 18.000 young soldiers who lost their lives here. The seven kilometers of trenches are still visible.
“Just a hundred years ago, winters up here were characterized by bombs, grenades, and lots of pain,” d’Emilia and Holzer explain in the video from the event. “Our idea was to re-experience Monte Piana in friendship and peace with each other, accompanied by kindhearted feelings during the day, and lulled to sleep at night by magical silence.”
On September 10th 2015 this idea came to life and their unique project took place for the third time. 26 athletes came together to sing, laugh, and relax in 17 specially designed rainbow hammocks strung high in the sky between the peaks — a symbol of peace and a tribute to the past.
The stunt, named “Rainbow Warriors”, was performed and designed by a professional team of athletes and riggers, and the set up has a breaking strength of greater than 150 kN (15.000 kg) for the main line, along with a redundant back up. The maximum force at any one time on the line during the event was 32 kN (3.200 kg).
The values and principles of d’Emilia and Holzer — a non-competitive spirit and practicing respect for the mountain so that they can be in harmony with the location — are also shared by all of the participants.
Today Monte Piana has become a meeting point for young people from all over the world who want to share more than a passion for the sport of highlining, who come to share a philosophy and a way of life.
ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED ON MAPTIA
Sebastian Wahlhútter is a photographer and anthropologist from Vienna, Austria.