Mercantour National Park Climbing
|GPS:||44.171, 7.268 Google Map · Climbing Area Map|
|Page Views:||87 total · 18/month|
|Shared By:||kenr on Oct 28, 2017|
|Admins:||Tim Wolfe, Shawn Heath|
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DescriptionContains the highest peak in the south-south-west Alps: Monte Argentera (N44.1778 E7.3055).
. . (the summits on the French side of the Mercantour range are lower).
. . (the main peak higher than that in the southwest Alps is much farther north: Monte Viso).
Also the classic high-mountain wall of the south-south-west Alps, the west face of the Corno Stella (lat long approx 44.1842 E7.3020). Most of the climbs on the Corno Stella are done from the base of the Rifugio Bozano hut (N44.18536 E7.29366) . (elev 2453m).
Normal route is starting below SW side (N44.1632 E7.2746) . (after 2.5 km driving on rough dirt/gravel road closed in winter + early spring), hiking/scrambling approach around the SW + S sides via Rifugio Remondino hut (N44.1634 E7.2957), then up over ridge around to SSE, and finishing up SE face.
Well-recommended exposed non-easy scramble is Cresta Sigismondi ridge on the SW side (perhaps via Cima Genova peak), then descend the normal route.
Grand traverse is to start from SW to Rifugio Remondino then up the Cresta Sigismondi and continue N over the Argentera summits, then northwest along ridge to higher SE summit of Corno Stella, and rappel down to Rifugio Bozano hut (N44.1854 E7.2936). Optional second day is to climb the Catena delle Guide (chain of the guides) sawtooth ridge to the NW and NE above Rifugio Bozano (technical climbing and rappels required) and finish on the lower NW summit of the Corno Stella and rappel down to return to Rifugio Bozano and hike out down W from there.
Hiking: many options including rugged connections between huts / rifugio with overnight sleeping.
Ski mountaineering: The northwest-facing basin of the Park often collects and holds much snow, with many options for backcountry ski tours -- after the road opens in springtime.
more . . .
The Park connects across the frontier boundary with France to the (larger) Mercantour National Park of France, around the town of Saint-Martin-Vesubie. But there's no short convenient way to drive between bases or trailheads on opposite sides.
Getting ThereAt the Southwest corner of the province of Cuneo in the region of Piemonte / Piedmont. By car normally reached by driving on fast interstates / motorways / autostrada to the city of Cuneo, either from Torino / Turin in the north or Genova / Genoa in the south by the Sea. Torino is quickly reached from Lyon France and the northern French Alps by the Tunnel de Frejus, or from Chamonix France or Geneva Switzerland by tne Tunnel de Mont Blanc / Monte Bianco.
Driving from the main city of Cuneo, take the main road SW through the city of Borgo San Dalmazzo (which also connects south over Tende pass to the cities of Menton and Nice on the coast of France) toward the Valle Gesso. At the junction for ski station Entracque, bear Right and soon enter the Mercantour National Park. Road is good asphalt (as of 2017) as far as Terme di Valdiere (N44.2059 E7.2718), then some rough sections getting to the trailhead for Rifugio Bozano, then rough dirt/gravel to the trailhead for Rifugio Remondino and the normal route to Monte Argentera.
Road closed in winter and early spring.
Hiking could come from the adjoining Mercantour National Park of France, but almost nobody does it that way.
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