Hello @Laurel, thanks again - we have another day here and will checkout the hike you mention and AdS. It does sound something we would like to explore.
@Barkinpark, the weather indeed is different than what google says. I usually check the webcam of the place in the morning (6 am or 7 am) we decide to go up. If it looks fairly clear, we get ready and go!
The weather was brilliant on Saturday, but rain in the town and snow at Seceda on Sunday and Monday (we could see the peaks have slight snow from our apartment which was not there before). Today (Tuesday) the weather looks great again.
As for Tre Cime ... we did a crazy thing and day tripped there on Sunday. Best decision. After a lot of contemplation, since the weather and webcams showed cloud and rain in val gardena, we decided to drive to tre cime, do a 3 to 4 hour trail and come back before sunset. Worked out brilliantly even though we left much later than we would have (due to the contemplation). So definitely doable, but it's a long day.
The hike itself is moderately easy, but the ascent is steep so it's strenuous (atleast it was me). However, I highly recommend that hike or atleast till Rifugio Locatelli (dreizinnenhutte). This overall area and the mountains surrounding it and the landscape is beyond what we imagined. I may be the odd one out, but we enjoyed the surrounding peaks, hike and landscape more than the tre cime itself.
We skipped lake Braies and came straight back to Ortisei. We might do the lake in some other trip. While driving from Ortisei to Tre Cume, we did pass a lake Durensee, and loved it. Greenish alpine water with the Dolomites for backdrop, was a good way to cool off slightly before the drive back.
It is usually recommended, here at the forum, and also at the numerous travel blogs and vlogs I followed to shift bases between val gardena and cortina to explore both the areas, and I agree, since it is beautiful and so different than other alpine locations, however, we really wanted to see why people recommend tre cime soooo much! I'm glad we did what we did, and now we have 2 days to take it easy in val gardena!
Wish you a happy and enjoyable trip too!