Beacons give us a direction when we sometimes are lost or disoriented. That was the Rosengarten Mastiff and Group for my father when traveling south and east of their headquarters. I mention it in the book while he was traveling back to his headquarters after a mission. One must remember that he came from Genoa, on the Mediterranean Sea, to Val Gardena as a young man. Even though he was born only miles from Val Gardena, he grew up by the Sea and didn't know the area very well. But after a shirt time of fighting in the area, he learned all the mountain outlines and used them to navigate the region, particularly in winter when all other land based markers would be covered in snow. I remember being impressed when I was about ten and on a trip to Trentino with my family, that my dad could rattle off all the mountain names. The picture below is of the Rosengarten Mastiff overlooking the valleys behind it. It may not come out too well in the picture, but you can see the Mastiff from hundreds of miles away.
Here are a couple additional pictures of the other mountains in the Rosengarten Group.
This valley is very picturesque, and features the Alpine meadows that Trentino is famous for. My father traversed this valley many times when returning from military engagements.
We had an interesting drive on our way to the Rosengarten Group. We passed by a high mountain military garrison location that was used during WWI. One needs to remember that this land belonged to Tyrolia until after the war, when it was ceeded to Italy for it's efforts in fighting for the allies. In war, the winner gets much of the land from the loser, and Ausria had to give up Trentino and the South Tyrol to Italy. You'll notice that even today, the building flies the flag of Tyrolia and it's four regions. Not Italy, even though for over one hundred years, it's been Italian property.
Being here, it is incredible to imagine persecuting a war in this environment, much less two world wars. It is incredible unforgiving.
Tomorrow we go to a sacred place. It's the castle where my uncle was captured and electrocuted to death by the Nazis. While it is an enormous castle, it was bought by an individual for his home some time ago. I tried to reach him to get inside, but recurved no response. I'll give it my best sales try tomorrow, but have little hope. It really doesn't matter though, because the drama unfolded in the surrounding woods and the outside walls for my father. It was December 10, 1943, the worst day of my father's life...