Majestic scenery and rugged mountain peaks

Climbing in the UNESCO World Heritage Dolomites

One of the best known personalities of the valley, who made mountaineering and the Dolomites famous, is Luis Trenker. As a writer, director and actor he didn’t just make films; he was above all a mountaineer.In the climbing paradise of the Val Gardena you’ll be spoilt for choice with the innumerable climbing routes, via ferrate and rock walls that are on offer.

In the case of sport climbing, the goal is to ascend short but technically challenging segments. It's a sport that you can engage in not only in the mountains, but also in special climbing walls. In the case of alpine climbing, it's the mountain itself that's the goal and the challenge. In order to safely reach the summit, careful planning and the use of pitons and safety equipment are indispensable. If you would like to learn and profit from the experience of a skilled mountain guide, you should contact the alpine schools and Gröden mountain guide associations in St. Christina, St. Ulrich, and Wolkenstein. The extensive program includes guided mountain tours, fixed-rope (ferrata) tours, and climbing instruction as well as individually organized ascents.

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Climbing in Val Gardena

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Climbing routes

A selection of beautiful climbing routes in Val Gardena

Guide books for alpine climbing 
 „Klettern in Gröden und Umgebung“ Band 1 (ISBN-10: 8882666093)
„Klettern in Gröden und Umgebung“ Band 2 (ISBN-10: 8882667316)
„Klettern in den Dolomiten, 3./4. Grad“ (ISBN-10: 8882669149)

Grande Fermeda - South eastern ridge - 2873 m
  • Mountain massif: Puez-Odle
  • Standard: IV+ (two sections), otherwise IV and (predominantly) III
  • Starting point: Col Raiser, which can be reached via gondola from S. Cristina in Val Gardena
  • Elevation change: access: 300 m, climbing route: 400 m
  • Duration:
    Col Raiser - access point: 1 hour
    Access point - Grande Fermeda: 3.5 hours
    Descent to the foot of the rock face: 2 hours
    Way back to Col Raiser: ¾ hour
  • Summary: very long but spectacular climbing tour with predominantly good rock, some spots are slightly crumbly. A sense of orientation is required due to complicated route finding!

Start at Col Raiser (2025m) and follow the waymarks across undulating pastures in the direction of Sass Rigais until you get to the south decline of Grande Fermeda. Turn left there and proceed on the path towards the eastern Fermeda gorge (between Odla de Cisles and Grande Fermeda) until you reach the access point at the foot of the south-east edge (terrific alpine flora!).

The route leads across grassy broken rock to the beginning of a deep groove which ascends slanting to the left. Through the groove, partly over blocks and up two short chimneys (sections grade III-, otherwise easier) to their ends where there is a reddish rock face. Now climb a slightly ascending traverse to the right (II and I) to a notch at which the normal route veers left. However, continue straight on, up short chimneys and stepped rock to a small notch at the south-east edge (to this point also along the original route as described in the AV [Alpine Association] guide, however, this route is not recommended since it leads across grassy and partly crumbly broken rock terrain).

Proceed across a crack (IV-) and subsequent broken rocks to a black cave. Climb left across a small ramp first and then right to a grey slab (III) which leads to the foot of a chimney/gully (III) ascending to the right. On the upper edge left to a short overhang, over this (III) to a crack and on to large overhangs, which can be bypassed by traversing right. Now up the wall (III+) to a wide notch, few metres’ descent and traverse to the left to a yellow wall. Fingery climbing over the slightly overhang wall (IV+, 1st crux) to a crack and move on to shortly before the SE-edge. To the left one pitch (1 section IV+, otherwise IV; 2nd crux) to a small notch, and 2 pitches to the highest point on the edge (initially III, then II). Short descent via a chimney to a very narrow ridge, which you have to climb over - extremely exposed - until you are under a wall flake.

Proceed, again descending a crack for a few metres (definitely not following the Alpine Association guide, climbing 40m down into the gorge, since it is brittle and prone to rockfall!), then exposed traverse (III+) to the foot of a chimney to the right of a yellow gendarme. Up through the chimney (IV-) to the notch above (beware of brittle rock!), where the normal route comes in from the left. Climb up left to a slab (II) to the ridge of the peak and closely to the right of it up to the ridge’s highest horns. Very narrow, airy traverse (“riding ridge”) to the Grande Fermeda peak.

From the peak via the ascent route to the mentioned notch above the chimney. Take the right turning there and follow a deep hidden gully to its base, while bypassing a blocking rock-step to the right (III-, otherwise II). Now climb down a few metres to an abseil piton and abseil the so-called “placca” (slab) down to a ledge. Zigzag down over ledges and grooves (II, most of the time easier, tracks), until you reach the traverse, where you left the normal route on the way up. Down the ascending route (2 fixed abseil points) to the access point and back to Col Raiser.

Five-finger peak - Edge of the thumb, crossing - 2996 m
  • Mountain massif: Sassolungo Group
  • Standard: IV (1 pitch), IV- (partly), III+ (predominantly), otherwise III
  • Starting point: Sassolungo notch, which is approached via gondola from the Passo Sella refuge
  • Elevation change: climbing route: about 400m
  • Duration:
    Sassolungo notch - thumb edge - thumb: 2 hours
    thumb - thumb notch - forefinger - middle finger: 2 hours
    descent to Sassolungo notch: 1.5 hours
  • Summary: very popular, extremely rewarding and fine fun climb, very airy all the way up on perfect, solid rock with good holds. In lovely weather there might be queues with longer waiting periods!

Start ascending from the Toni-Demetz hut in the Sassolungo notch (2679m) in a traverse. In less than 5 minutes you will find yourself at the already visible access point in the fall line of the ridge between Dito di Dio (God’s finger) and thumb.

Steep and stepped ascent over the rock face (IV-) to a scree terrace. Over it (careful not to start any stones rolling!) to a groove which leads to the ridge between Dito di Dio and thumb over easy rock and scree. Leftwards over the ridge to a headwall. Climb this directly up the edge (sections IV-, otherwise III) and proceed with a short traverse leftwards to a small notch and few metres’ descent down a groove to another notch. Continue through a crack/chimney and you will reach the edge of the thumb. Now directly on the edge, at times slightly deviating to the left or right flank, 4 pitches (1 pitch IV, otherwise IV- and III+), partly very exposed, up to the peak of the thumb (2953m).

Climb down a bit to the abseil piton (II), then abseil twice to the thumb notch. Now directly over the wall (III+) to a crack which leads to the beginning of an extremely airy traverse. Move on leftwards to the edge, continue traversing for a bit and then climb upwards slanting to the left (III) until you reach the forefinger notch. Rightwards over stepped rock (III) to the forefinger (2980m) in few minutes. Climb down from the summit into the forefinger notch and steeply ascend (III+) to the visible rock window. To the left over a smooth wall section (III+), then without difficulty over stepped rock to the summit of the middle finger (2996m).

Climb down southwards from the summit a few metres, then abseil from the abseil piton through a chimney to the forefinger notch. Climb down slanting to the left to get to the edge of the forefinger and make the airy traverse on a narrow ledge to abseil piton. Abseil three times to the thumb notch, then climb down a few metres and proceed on a ledge slanting to the left until you reach an edge. Abseil twice over the slabs to a groove. Traverse the groove on the left to the so-called ball of the thumb. Zigzag down, then traverse leftwards to an abseil piton. Abseil three times as far as the scree slope at the Sassolungo notch and along tracks back to the Toni-Demetz hut.

Sassolungo - Normal route - 3181 m
  • Mountain massif: Sassolungo
  • Group Standard: III+ (one section), III (several passages), otherwise II, furthermore glacier and couloir
  • Starting point: Sassolungo notch, which is approached via gondola from the Passo Sella refuge
  • Elevation change: approach: 100m; climbing route: about 650m
  • Duration:
    Sassolungo notch - Sassolungo glacier: 1.5 hours
    Glacier-Giuliani Bivouac: 2 hours
    bivouac Sassolungo summit: ½ hour
    Both descent and ascent: 3.5 hours
  • Summary: Fantastic but demanding and, in parts, airy tour with very long and complicated route finding in spectacular surroundings. Considerable stamina and high-alpine experience as well as a sense of orientation are required! Predominantly solid rock with good holds. Climbing route approximately 1,500m!

Descend from the Toni-Demetz hut in the Sassolungo notch (2679m) for about 10 minutes towards the Sassolungo hut, then right, crossing a snowfield or easy broken rock to the beginning of the obvious Fassani Ledge in the south-west wall of Sassolungo. To the left in a lot of ups and downs on the scree and broken rock ledge until it is interrupted by a vertical chimney.

Climb left of the chimney over steep rock steps (III, II) on good holds upwards to the continuation of the ledge and proceed along it until it ends at a horn. Keep to the right climbing 40m up the steep rock wall (II) to a notch. Now work your way along a 70m long, extremely exposed traverse on wire rope rightwards to a rock angle and over rock steps (III) up to a small notch. Another, easier traverse to scree terrrain above the Sassolungo glacier. Short descent to the glacier (about 2800m), which is crossed almost evenly.

Over talus on the left to the lower couloir and an about 120-metre steep ascent in ice (crampons required; rockfall hazard!) to the notch at the upper end (the couloir can also be avoided by climbing the rock ridge on its left: in parts fixed protection: iron rungs and wire rope; grades III, II and A0).

Few metres’ descent from the notch to the amphitheatre, a scree and rock basin (about 2930m) and rightwards over a short wall (III) to the broad main groove left to the obvious pyramid tower. Over the stepped rock (II) up the groove to the window notch and on leftwards until you reach Giuliani Bivouac (3100m) under the bivouac notch.

Short ascent to the notch and the pedestal of the Torre Rossa (red tower). A few metres to the right, then direct vertical ascent (crux, III+, about 15m) to the top of the Torre Rossa and past a crucifix with board to the southern buttress (3160m). Short descent rightwards into a notch, up to a high rise in the ridge whose highest point is bypassed on the left. Again several metres down to a further notch and finally over easy terrain up to the main peak of Sassolungo.

From the peak back to the Torre Rossa and from there abseil down to the bivouac. Climb down to the amphitheatre (abseiling is partly possible) and on to the notch above the lower couloir. Now either abseil the couloir (every 20m abseil pitons on the left wall) or bypass to right via the alternative route. From the glacier along the ascending route to the Fassani Ledge, on to the Sassolungo cirque, and finally up again to the Sassolungo notch.

First Sella Tower - South east face, Kostner route - 2533 m
  • Mountain massif: Sella Group
  • Standard: III+ (predominantly), partly also III and II
  • Starting point: Passo Sella, which can be approached on the roads from Canazei and Selva
  • Elevation change: approach: 150m, climbing route: 150m
  • Duration:
    Passo Sella - beginning of climb: ½ hour
    beginning of climb First Sella Tower: 1 hour
    Descent along the normal track: 1 hour
  • Summary: classic ascent through the so-called south wall chimneys of the First Sella Tower. Most of the time solid but rather polished rock and very slippery if it is wet. Instead of the direct (not very rewarding) descent along the normal track to Passo Sella, the crossing to the Second Sella Tower is recommended.

Start from Passo Sella (2240m) at the Hotel Maria along a good path across steep meadows, later on scree and broken rock terrain, shortly before the access point of the normal trail in the fall line of the notch between Piz Ciavazes and the Second Sella Tower. Leftwards on tracks to the beginning of the Kostner Route at the foot of the south pillar of the First Sella Tower.

First diagonally to the left over partly grassy rock steps until you get to a short chimney (III+) which leads to a stepped, about 20-m-high wall. Climb up the wall (II), and make a short rightward traverse to the beginning of a prominent series of chimneys. Through the chimneys, partly also on their boundary walls (III+ and III), to just under the south pillar summit. Over scree and grassy rock steps on the head and with a long straddle or jump across to the summit pyramid of the First Sella Tower. On steep crag (first III+, then easier) to the notch between the First and Second Sella Towers. Leftwards over scree and broken rock to the summit of the First Sella Tower.

From the summit back to the notch between the I and II Towers, then in a wide gully (sections II, mostly I and walking terrain) to a large wall basin in the fall line of the notch between the II Sella Tower and Piz Ciavazes. Go down in switchbacks and finish off over a steep ramp to the access point of the normal route. On the path back to Passo Sella.

Second Sella Tower - Kostner dihedral- 2598 m
  • Mountain massif: Sella Group
  • Standard: IV- (several short sections), otherwise III+ and III
  • Starting point: Passo Sella, which can be approached on the roads from Canazei and Selva
  • Elevation change: to the First Sella Tower: 300m; climbing route: 100m
  • Duration:
    Passo Sella - First Sella Tower - access point: 1.75 hours
    Access point - Second Sella Tower: 1 hour
    Descent on the normal trail: 1 hour
  • Summary: very beautiful and rewarding climb with good and sustained rock. Instead of the direct (not very rewarding) descent along the normal trail to Passo Sella the crossing to the Third Sella Tower is recommended.

From Passo Sella via the Kostner Route (or another one of the numerous routes) to the summit of the First Sella Tower and over scree and broken rock to the notch between the First and Second Sella Towers.

Proceed from the notch over wall steps and a steep gully (III) to a short ledge which leads leftwards to the beginning of the prominent Kostner Dihedral. Now directly along the remarkably beautiful dihedral (some short passages IV-, otherwise III+) up to its upper end. Over rock steps (III) rightwards to a little notch and finally along the ridge much more easily to the summit of the Second Sella Tower.

From the summit over stepped rock down to a short chimney which is downclimbed (II). In a rock groove without difficulties towards the saddle between the Second Sella Tower and Piz Ciavazes. Now either traverse over to the saddle (for the crossing to the Third Sella Tower) or further down to a big wall basin in the fall line of the saddle. Proceed descending in switchbacks and finish off over a steep ramp to the access point of the normal route. On the trail back to Passo Sella.

Third Sella Tower - Jahnweg trail - 2696 m
  • Moutain massif: Sella Group
  • Standard: IV+ (one short section), mostly III+ and III
  • Starting point: Passo Sella, which can be approached on the roads from Canazei and Selva
  • Elevation change: to the Spiralband (spiral ledge): 300m; climbing route: 160m
  • Duration:
    Passo Sella - Spiralband - access point: 2 hours
    Access point - Jahnweg - Third Sella Tower: 1.5 hours
    Descent on the normal trail: 2 hours
  • Summary: varied and in parts very airy climb on good, if partly polished rock. The crux is smoothly polished! Can be ideally combined with the routes on the First and Second Sella Towers.

Start at Passo Sella (2240m) from the Hotel Maria Flora on a good path across steep meadows, later scree and broken rock terrain to the access point of the normal trail up to the First and Second Sella Towers in the fall line of the saddle between Piz Ciavazes and the II Sella Tower. Over a steep ramp (sections II, otherwise I) to a grassy rock basin. Through this ascending in switchbacks, and across not very difficult rock terrain to the saddle. This spot can also be reached from the summit of the Second Sella Tower.

A few metres northwards down to an abseil piton and abseil twice (10m and 20m) to a ledge. Traverse the gorge between the II and III Sella Towers on the partly roofed ledge rightwards until you get to the remarkable Spiralband (spiral ledge). Along it to the access point of the Jahnweg trail at the beginning of a prominent ramp, shortly before the ledge makes a sharp right turn (please note: due to the great danger of rockfall we strongly advise you not to take the “normal route” through the gorge between the II and III Sella Towers, as described in the AV [Alpine Association] guide!).

Over the steep crack/ramp 2 pitches (first III, then III+) up to a small pinnacle. Bypass it on the back side and move on to the left to a narrow ledge. Very airy traverse on the ledge, which soon becomes very narrow (III+), leftwards to a piton. There to the right over the steep rock face with good holds (III+, later III) two pitches up. Over a slab section rightwards to a chimney which leads to the stance under a crack ascending to the left. Now don’t proceed straight on, but via the crack (crux IV+, about 4 metres, fingery and smoothly polished rock) to the adjacent chimney. Through the chimney (II) to slabs ascending to the right and leading up to the summit plateau in two pitches. The Third Sella Tower is then reached over scree and broken rock.

From the summit on tracks towards Piz Ciavazes to an abseil piton. Abseil twice to a terrace. Now downclimb over rock steps (II) to the spiral ledge (red dots mark the easiest route). On the wide ledge to the gorge between the Second and the Third Sella Towers. Cross the gorge (please note: do not descend directly through the gorge as described in the AV [Alpine Association] guide, due to the great danger of rockfall!) and on along the partly roofed ledge to an abseil piton. Abseil several times until you reach the talus under the gorge. On tracks down to the path between the Via Ferrata delle Mésules/Pößnecker path and Passo Sella, and finally leftwards back to the starting point.

Vie ferrate

A selection of beautiful Vie ferrate in Val Gardena
Small and big Cir
  • Mountain massif: Puez-Odle Group
  • Starting point: Passo Gardena; parking is possible at the pass
  • Standard:
    Small Cir: moderately difficult
    Big Cir: easy
  • Elevation change: Piccola Cir: 400m, both summits together: 600m
  • Duration:
    Passo Gardena - Piccola Cir: 1.5 hours
    Descent and reascent to Grande Cir: 2.5 hours
    Descent to Passo Gardena: 1 hour
  • Summary: Piccola Cir: short but invigorating and airy via ferrata. Grande Cir: easy ascent over broken rock terrain with only few steel cables; also suitable for sure-footed hikers.

From the pass at 2137m initially on a road up to the top station of the Dantercëpies lift (2298m). From there rightwards over the grass crest into the gorge below Piccola Cir. Steeply over slippery scree and broken rocks to the access point of the via ferrata on the right hand side of the gorge at a rock shoulder.

A small ladder leads to steep rocks and an exposed climb over them leads to a crack. Move over it and through a wall steeply upwards to an earthy pulpit. Now traverse rightwards to a crevice and on very steep rock up to the summit of Piccola Cir.

From the summit back to the pulpit and left over a ledge protected by wire rope to a notch. Rightwards through a steep talus and broken rock gully down to the road and back to Passo Gardena.

Those who also want to climb Grande Cir leave the road at a signpost turning left and move on traversing on a path to the gorge on the west of Grande Cir. Upwards in switchbacks on scree until a ledge, protected by wire rope, forks right. Over the rock slabs of the ledge until you reach the flank of the mountain. Stepped rock (grade I, most of the time without climbing aids), scree and broad ledges lead up to the summit of Grande Cir with no difficulties and unexposed.

The descent to Passo Gardena is along the ascending path.

Kesselkogel - 3004 m
  • Mountain massif: Catincaccio/Rosengarten Group
  • Starting Point: Gardeccia, which is approached by minibus from Pera di Fassa
  • Standard: easy
  • Elevation change: from Gardeccia: 1050m
  • Duration:
    Gardeccia - Vajolet hut – Passo Principe/Grasleitenpass: 2 hours
    Grasleitenpass - Catinaccio di Antermoia: 1.5 hours
    Catinaccio di Antermoia - Catinaccio di Antermoia notch – Passo Antermoia: 1.5 hours
    Passo Antermoia - Grasleitenpass - Gardeccia: 1.5 hours
  • Summary: Easy, but in parts airy via ferrata up to the only three-thousander in the Rosengarten Group. Spectacular scenery, but usually crowded. As a two-day trip it can be perfectly combined with the Laurenzi via ferrata.

From Gardeccia (1950m) on the wide road (No. 546 markings) moderately steep to the Vajolet hut (2243m) and along the No. 584 path at the foot of the Vajolet Towers on to the Grasleitenpass with its little refuge (2601m).

After tracks and markings over a scree slope to the beginning of the via ferrata in few minutes. Traverse to the left until a short chimney leads again rightwards to a narrow ledge. Short, airy descent on the ledge to a ladder, descend it to get to a rib. Protected rock steps and grooves lead up to the broad ledge of the west flank. Follow the ledge to its end at a deep notch without difficulties. Now rightwards over broken rock to the narrow north ridge and over this, exposed, up to the cross on the summit.

From the summit first downwards along the south ridge to broken rock which leads to the beginning of the broad ledge of the east flank. Follow the scree ledge for some time downwards until you reach a rock terrace which is downclimbed to the Catinaccio di Antermoia notch (2700m) with the aid of wire ropes and a few iron ladders.

On tracks directly under the east face of Catinaccio di Antermoia with little loss of altitude across to Passo Antermoia (2770m) and over steep talus on to Grasleitenpass. Along the ascent route back to Gardeccia.

Pisciadù via ferrata (Tridentina)
  • Mountain massif: Sella Group
  • Starting point: Passo Gardena; large car park near a gravel pit a few bends below the pass towards Corvara (information board) ## Standard: moderately difficult, upper section difficult
  • Elevation change: via ferrata: 650m, with Cima Pisicadù (peak): 1050m
  • Duration:
    Car park - Pisciadù hut: 2.5 hours
    Pisciadù hut - Cima Pisciadù: 1.5 hours
    Descent to hut: 1 hour Descent Val Setus: 1 hour
    Descent Val de Mesdi/Mittagstal valley: 3 hours
  • Summary: beautiful but very airy via ferrata on good rock. This route is extremely popular and frequently crowded therefore an early start is recommended to beat the rush. Danger of rockfall!

From the car park (1950m) leftwards (marked by a board) over talus and through dwarf pine in about 10 minutes to the start of the via ferrata.

On metal rungs up the first steep wall terrace (about 50m high). Afterwards proceed on a normal hiking path to shortly before the waterfall, where the main section of the via ferrata begins. Steeply and exposed, but at all times very well protected up to a little broken rock basin. There is an escape exit (easy talus path) down to the hut.

Keep right and scramble up over the very steep and airy wall, which is clearly more difficult than the lower section. Then exposed traverse leftwards to a steep chimney/gully. Almost vertically up on metal rungs and a ladder to just under the Exner Tower peak. The climb is finished off with an airy traverse to the famous suspension bridge linking a deep chasm. Continue to the end of the via ferrata on a path up to the Pisciadù hut (2583m) in few minutes.

Those who want to climb up to the Pisciadù summit have to proceed on trail No. 666 through the Val de Tita (in part snowfields and several protected rocks) and up to the Val de Tita/Bamberger Saddle (2807m). From there continue to the left (signpost, cairn) and on tracks over scree and easy rock (grade I, no fixed protection!) to the cross on the summit of Cima Pisciadù (2985m). Descent down to the hut only via the ascending route!

From the hut either on trail 666 through the steep Val Setus (protected rock steps; in early summer steep snowfields!) directly down to the car park or (much more picturesque but considerably longer) on trail 676 (at the beginning steel cable protection) down into the Val de Mesdi and through this as far as a fork. Take the left turn over the river and in a long traverse back to the starting point.

Piz Boè - 3152 m
  • Mountain massif: Sella Group
  • Starting point: Vallon top station, which is approached via the Boè lift from Corvara to Crep de Mont and subsequently via chairlift (which is currently out of service due to reconstruction!)
  • Standard: al Vallon: moderately difficult, Lichtenfelser Steig: easy
  • Elevation change: from Vallon top station: 650m
  • Duration:
    Top station - Via ferrata al Vallon - Piz Boè: 2.5 hours
    Descent along Lichtenfelser Steig: 1.5 hours
  • Summary: a short via ferrata and a protected path in combination with a longer, very interesting and rewarding hike up to the highest summit in the Sella Group. Also suitable for beginners. On the extended high plateaus navigation will be difficult in fog!

From the top station (2553m) on a marked path rightwards until you get to a fork. Turn left there and over extended scree fields to the head of the valley and the foot of the wall, where the al Vallon via ferrata starts.

Running along grooves and ledges, over well-stepped rock, the via ferrata is in parts steep, however, protected by steel cable all the way up to a waterfall. From there on the left hand side of the gorge (once climbers used to cross the waterfall on a bridge, but the bridge doesn’t exist any longer!) steeply upwards to the upper end of the rock bar (Vallon notch, 2750m). Then a longer not very steep hike leads over the extended plateau to a notch below Punta del Lago Gelato/Eisseespitze (3009m). Steep ascent (several protection bolts) to its peak, short descent and in steep gravel switchbacks up to Crestra Strenta. Over the narrow, very airy ridge to the path which comes up from the Boè hut, and which is permanently crowded, on to the left to the much-visited Piz Boè summit.

From the summit along the ascending route back to Punta del Lago Gelato and forward to a fork. Branch right (waymarks and tracks) and down in switchbacks to an extended terrace and on a longer traverse to a notch. The Lichtenfelser Steig now leads along wide ledges, later also over little difficult wire rope protected rock steps down into a cirque. On the path back to the Vallon top station.

Plattkofel - Oskar Schuster Via ferrata - 2955 m
  • Mountain massif: Sassolungo Group
  • Starting point: Sassolungo notch, which is approached via gondola from the Passo Sella house
  • Standard: moderately difficult
  • Elevation change: ascent: about 800m, descend: about 1200m
  • Duration:
    Sassolungo notch - Sassolungo hut: ¾ hour
    Sassolungo hut - Oskar-Schuster via ferrata - Sassopiatto: 2 hours
    Descent to Sassopiatto hut: 1 hour 25 mins
    Sassopiatto hut - Passo Sella: 2 hours
  • Summary: very interesting via ferrata with picturesque scenery. Only the most difficult sections are protected and partly it is prone to rockfall. Only for experienced and sure-footed climbers who can manage unprotected and scree-covered rock terrain. Exercise caution in hazardous weather conditions like snow, ice or fog.

Start at the Toni-Demetz hut in the Sassolungo notch (2679m) over scree and easy broken rock terrain through the steep Sassolungo cirque (in early spring there is still snow for an extended period of time!) down to the Sassolungo hut (2253m).

Now through the Sassopiatto cirque over scree and debris in partly steep ascent up to the access point of the via ferrata (beware of rockfall and mostly steep snowfield at the access point!). Rightwards over a ledge into a gorge and in complicated, partly exposed and only partly protected ascent (the free-climbing sections are predominantely grade I, yet several passages are grade II as well) over broken rock, cracks, chimneys, airy ledges, partly smooth wall steps and scree to a wide gully below the summit. Stepped, but slightly brittle rock in the gully leads up to a notch, continue right over the ridge to reach the cross on the Sassopiatto summit in only few minutes.

From the summit back to the notch along the ascent gully and rightwards on a marked trail over scree and easy broken rock down to the Sassopiatto hut (2256m). The pretty much-beaten Friedrich-August path (No. 557 markings) leads back to Passo Sella along several ascents and descents.

Via Ferrata delle Mésules
  • Mountain massif: Sella Group
  • Starting point: Passo Sella, which can be approached on the roads from Canazei and Selva
  • Standard: difficult
  • Elevation change: from Passo Selva: 705m
  • Duration:
    Passo Selva - via ferrata delle Mésules - Piz Selva (peak): 3.5 hours
    Piz Selva - Val Lasties - Passo Selva: 3 hours
  • Summary: demanding and very airy via ferrata. Its lower 250 metres of altitude lead over vertical and heavily polished rock. High-alpine experience and some climbing skills are required, further climbers must not suffer from vertigo; not for beginners and the inexperienced! Beware in cold weather since the rockface in the morning shadow may be icy!

From Passo Sella (2240m) in a slightly ascending traverse below the Sella Towers to the access point of the via ferrata to the right of a black wall.

Now invigorating, nearly vertical ascent over the rock face (before 1990 the lower section of the via ferrata ran further left through a gloomy, most of the time wet chimney). After around 60 metres you will reach the original route again, follow this on easier rocks (not protected) until you get to a chimney which introduces the crux of the via ferrata. Through the very narrow, vertical and partly slightly overhanging chimney up to the upper end on metal rungs, very exposed on a little buttress and over a short ladder on the vertical wall. Through further short chimneys and cracks up to a big debris and broken rock basin. First straight upwards, then traverse to the left to a wide saddle between Piz Ciavazes and Piz Selva. Along a ledge to a protected gorge which leads over stepped steep rock (notably easier than in the lower section) to the Sella plateau and to the Piz Selva peak (2941m).

Now almost even hike over the wide Mésules plateau (marked path No. 649, in fog conditions extreme caution is required!). Along this way it is also possible to climb several not very distinctive peaks (among others, the rewarding Piz Miara with big cross on the summit, 2965m) to the Pisciadù notch (2908m). Straight on until you get to path No. 666, which is followed rightwards for a short time. Soon turn right again and continue along path No. 647 on a longer walk through the Val Lasties valley until you reach the Passo Sella road. On this either walk or hitchhike back to the starting point.

Sass Rigais - 3025 m
  • Mountain massif: Puez-Odle Group
  • Starting point: Col Raiser, which is approached via gondola from S. Cristina in Val Gardena
  • Standard: east ridge: moderately difficult, south-west flank: easy
  • Elevation change: from Col Raiser: 1000m
  • Duration:
    Col Raiser - Val Salieres/Wasserrinnental - east ridge - Sass Rigais: 3.5 hours
    Sass Rigais - south-west flank - Col Raiser: 3 hours
  • Summary: extremely popular and rewarding tour to one of the best-known panoramic mountains in the Dolomites. In good weather frequently crowded. Those who are less experienced are advised to undertake both ascent and descent over the south-west flank.

From Col Raiser (2025m) following information boards and waymarks over undulating pastures to path 2A and below the south declines of the Odle pinnacles on to Pian Ciantier. Straight on to the Val Salieres and through the wide cirque first only slightly ascending and then in steep switchbacks over scree up to the Salieres notch (2696m) between Sass Rigais and Furchetta. Now up along a steep gully to a short wall step which is tackled on rungs.

Afterwards moderately steep and only little exposed over scree, ledges and rock steps (all difficult points are wire-rope protected) up to the cross of the summit on Sass Rigais. From the summit partly exposed over the narrow and rocky south-east ridge to a buttress and protected over stepped rock down to a gorge. Initially over protected broken rocks, then in switchbacks to the flat, partly verdant middle section of the route. Traverse on a narrow path to a rock head above the Val Mesdi gorge and downclimb partly scree and broken rock first and then over slabs (wire rope and several footbridges) to the gorge coming down from the Val Mesdi notch. Down in switchbacks to Pian Ciantier and along the ascent route back to Col Raiser.

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