Type: Sport, Aid, Grade II
FA: unknown
Page Views: 123 total · 5/month
Shared By: kenr on Nov 7, 2017
Admins: Tim Wolfe, Shawn Heath

You & This Route


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Description

Pretty good "French style" route.
. . "French style" meaning lots of hardware (rungs and rigid hand-rails) other than
. . . the cable (which usually was not taut like often in the Dolomites).

"Difficult" meaning several overhanging sections -- so I'd say there were several individual moves felt like 5.3 or 5.4 even with using all the fixed hardware for Aid. And steep sequences so sustained that I'd say it really ought to be rated 5.5 -- even assuming you hang to rest at ome of the rock-to-cable attachment points.
At least one sequences would get a VF-specific diffficulty rating of D (on Eastern Alps / Dolomites scale of A to F), or "Difficile (D)" on the scale (F PD to TD ED) in the most popular VF guidebook for France. The harder right-hand Variation high on the first part would get a rating of E or D+ (on scale of A to F), or "Trés Difficile (TD)" the VF scale for France.

Not as much very steep strenuous climbing as VF di Camoglieres (also in Cuneo province), but perhaps a bit more interesting moves.

  • Some steep even overhanging climbing, some dramatic exposure.
  • Straightforward approach on rather nice trail.
  • Interesting descent with two VF down-climb sections and a ridge-crest section.
. . . . then a rather nice descent trail.
  • Arrangement of rungs mostly ladder-like, sometimes with interesting use of vertical/diagonal rail,
. . . . and some interesting sideways moves.
. . . . (but not up with the latest concept that moves on artificial holds can be designed to be interesting).
  • Not much opportunity for "free" climbing moves with hands and feet directly on rock (which anyway often seemed unsound).

warning: Much of the walking between VF cable sections on steep slopes slippery with dirt and leaves -- so perhaps this route is not a good choice with possible rain, or the day (or two) after rain.

Climb: Variation to R side high on first part of VF is more interesting. Long walk roughly SE 200m up steep + slippery (marked with light yellow paint) to start of second part. There is an escape trail to right (also steep and slippery) which meets the descent route at a trail sign which does not say it's the descent trail. First VF section of second part not so interesting. Then a short walk, then the next VF more interesting, then finishes with interesting traverse to a short easy bridge. Finally scramble/hike up to crest of ridge. Next walk about 220m first SE then S (marked with light yellow paint) to the highest summit around.

Descent: Follow the cable, with two steep VF down-climb sections with rungs. Second lower VF section more interesting because rungs sparse, so need to think about placement of feet on the rock. Remainder of descent trail is marked with light yellow paint -- except where it's not . . .

warning: Two points on descent where the wrong way is well-beaten and the right way is not well-marked:
1) just below the second lower VF down-climb on rungs, there is a well-beaten path to the right along base of cliff horizontal -- nice special space to walk or to picnic in shade. But the correct trail turns downward Left away from that.
2) Not far below that, meet a well-beaten horizontal trail with a signs at junction (and no sign for "ritorno"). Here just cross the horizontal trail and continue down.

GPS useful waypoints:
  • Trailhead . (N44.2401 E7.4036) . Start from street in town of Entracque.
. . . . Parking 10m SW. Additional parking up farther SW about 160m.
  • Junction of approach forest road with another road . (N44.2392 E7.4163)
. . . . Here turn sharp Left.
  • Trail up to VF bottom start leaves forest road at . (N44.2436 E7.4274).
  • VF part 1 bottom start . (N44.2442 E7.4279)
  • VF part 1 top . (N44.2444 E7.4282)
  • junction with escape trail between VF parts 1+2 . (N44.2432 E7.4301)
  • VF part 2 bottom start . (N44.2430 E7.4303)
  • easy bridge . (N44.2431 E7.4307) . near finish
  • top end of upward cable, start of descent ("ritorno") trail . (N44.2431 E7.4310)
. . . . with great viewpoint 30m NW.
  • top summit of Funs di Entracque peak . (N44.2416 E7.4321).
  • bottom of cable + down-climb VF sections of descent . (N44.2396 E7.4309)
. . . . Descent trail goes down Left from here - (not horizontal right under cliff).
  • junction (N44.2392 E7.4302) of Descent trail with Escape trail from near bottom start of VF part 2.
. . . . Descent trail goes across + down from here, not horizontal left of right.
  • Descent trail turns right NW + North (after going West) . (N44.2385 E7.4272).

Location

Start of VF route at GPS latitude longitude approx (N44.2442 E7.4279).
. . 20 km SW from city of Cuneo, 85 km WNW from Finale Ligure.

Drive to town of Entracque (near Mercantour national park). Parking on street near Trailhead signs (N44.2401 E7.4036). Additional parking up farther SW about 160m.

Hiking approach: Follow the signs. After about 1 km on forest road up roughly East, the forest road starts downward, curves right over bridge (SW) and meets another forest road. Key is to turn sharp Left here and go NE up another 1 km, then sharp turn S and soon see sign to leave main trail and head up left to bottom start of VF part 1.

Protection

Protection (against actually falling):
  • Not so good, if only clip the cable in the normal way using normal VF kit,
. . . . (which is typical of most VF routes).
  • Well protected if also clip intermediate rungs.
  • no rubber bumpers on cable-to-rock attachment posts.
  • non-taut cable (so less chance of carabiner breaking by hitting cable-attachment post.
  • pigtails on many attachment posts for directional protection of rope belay from Leader).

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