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Elevation: 9,622 ft
GPS: 44.185, 7.301 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 75 total · 7/month
Shared By: kenr on Nov 19, 2017
Admins: Tim Wolfe, Shawn Heath
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Description

The great alpine wall of the southwest Alps, on the NW side of Monte Argentera in the Mercantour National Park.
Summit elevation 3050 m (GPS lat long N44.18514 E7.30129).

Rock is (interestingly-featured, hard-metamorphic) granitic gneiss. Faces SW, so cold in the morning.

Sleeping base at Rifugio Bozano hut (elevation 2453m) close to the base of the wall, with non-strenous hiking approach from parking on asphalt road. Closes mid-September, but has a nice "winter room" in separate building.

Has a lower and upper part, each with its own routes, and a wide ledge with a little scrambling connecting between them.

Classic less difficult route is "Campia" (6a free > 5c with simple aid) on the left side of the upper part, with a variety of interesting rock situations to challenge the leader.

Nice less-difficult "warmup" way to reach it is by "Pilastro di Oscar" (5c) in the lower part.

Harder more interesting on the lower part is "Regalami un Sorriso" (sustained 5c+ free, or 5c with simple aid).

Another interesting route on upper part is "Il Barone Rampante" (6b+ free, or 6a+ perhaps 6a with simple aid).

Descent from the lower part (newly re-fitted and re-designed in 2017) is by rappels first rappel from near top of route "Pilastro di Oscar" toward the S (easiest with double-ropes - but perhaps could be done with single?), then some hiking/scrambling, and some more single-rope rappels roughly S. Finishing with long scramble NW on talus down to meet the super-deluxe trail back to the hut.

Descent from left side of upper part of wall (newly re-fitted and slightly re-designed in 2017) from cairn-marked top anchor just below top edge of cliff -- three double-rope rappels down to the wide ledge.
. . (there is another rappel descent, likely requiring double-ropes, from right side of upper part).

Getting There

Drive SW from Cuneo city into Valle di Gesso, passing through city of Borgo San Dalmazzo and town of Valdieri. Just past junction for ski station Entracque, enter the Mercantour National Park. Road is good asphalt (as of 2017) as far as Terme di Valdiere (N44.2059 E7.2718), then up through some hairpins and rough sections to the trailhead parking (N44.1845 E7.2694) . (elev ~ 1590m). Road closed in winter and early spring.

Hiking trail E up to Rifugio Bozano is very well-designed with careful switchbacks to reach the sleeping base without strain.

Rifugio Bozano hut (N44.1854 E7.2936) . (elev 2453m) is close to the base of the wall.

Approach from hut to base of lower part of wall is super-deluxe, on rocks that have been re-arranged to be remarkably easy until the final scramble.

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