Type: Sport, Aid, Alpine, 1798 ft (545 m)
FA: unknown
Page Views: 349 total · 9/month
Shared By: kenr on Sep 21, 2018
Admins: Tim Wolfe, Shawn Heath

You & This Route

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Long adventure to the top of one of the Dolomites' highest peaks.
* Wanders all around it along the way.
* Surrounded by big mountain views.
* Remote feeling away from roads and buildings.
* Lots and lots of scrambling 3rd + 4th class on fairly good dolomite (limestone-like) rock.

* Free climbing -- pretty much everything after the initial tunnel section can be climbed with hands and feet directly on the rock, using the steel cable only for Protection (not for Aid). Say like three short sequences 5.6-5.7, larger amount of lower 5th class.
* difficulty as Via Ferrata with full use of fixed hardware for Aid: AlpinVerlag guidebook C/D on scale of A to F (three short sections of C/D). Cicerone print guidebook 4 on scale of 1 to 6.

* North- and West-facing, so might need crampons + ice axe, especially early season.
* Headlamp needed for tunnel (though there is supposed be some way to avoid that tunnel).

* Klettersteigfuhrer Dolomiten-Sudtirol-Gardasee, by Jentszch-Rabi  + Jentzsch + Wissekal (AlpinVerlag.at).
. . . (mostly German-language, with short English summaries, but the route topo diagrams and numeric and symbolic info are valuable even if don't read much German.
* Via Ferratas of the Italian Dolomites: Volume 1, by James Rushforth (Cicerone.co.uk 2018).
. . . (English-language with helpful verbal desriptions).

* Long really Long: Do you want that much time seeing (similar) big views? and that many thousands of (similar) nice scrambling moves?
. . . (if change your mind, there's an obvious easy exit well before the summit.
* Not much thoughtful climbing.
* Much of the rock (especially in crux sections) is notably polished.
* Lots of walking on ledges covered with rubble (as usual for limestone / dolomite rock).
* Tunnel near the start is not so interesting. Mostly a long steep uphill hike in the dark.

Read the guidebooks and web pages for more detail.
The basic ideas are:
Enter the tunnel (N46.5328, E12.0443), and hike about 150 meters up and up inside the tunnel with a cable handrail. Headlamp needed for tunnel. Emerge into daylight, then traverse on a ledge roughly north for about 650 meters to the steel cable (N46.5386, E12.0422) which is the start of the "real" climbing.

Next several cable-protected upward sections intermingled with horizontal traverses trending NE. At last, reach Tre Dita (N46.5444, E12.0468), with an option to escape Left (briefly N then generally E) to Rifugio Giusani hut (N46.5446 E12.0608) - - > See route on this Map.

Next turn R and traverse 250 meters S on rising ledge to reach another steel cable (N46.5417, E12.0462). About 100 meters up East (with some of the most interesting climbing), then about 250 metes up SE reach the summit area. Finally about 300 meters non-steep to the highest point N46.5374 E12.0510).

Go back NW most of the way toward the top of the VF cable, and find a hiking/scrambling route at first N then ENE down to Rifugio Giusani hut (N46.5446 E12.0608). Then well-signed trail back down to Rifugio Dibona parking - - > See on this Map.


driving: Access to Rifugio Dibona is from the main road between Falzarego pass and Pocol and the city of Cortina d'Ampezzo. Around (N46.5208 E12.0847) with sign, turn roughly NE onto narrow curvy asphalt road. Up and up, later goes generally WNW, turns to narrow dirt/gravel, finishes N up to dirt parking.

parking : (N46.5327 E12.0702) by Rifugio Dibona hut.

hiking: Follow signed trail 2.5 km roughly West to entrance to tunnel (N46.5328 E12.0443).
. . . After about 1.1 km around (N46.5351 E12.0577) is an unsigned trail up R to a short via ferrata cable section leading to a cave which can be explored (more interesting than the tunnel on this route).
. . . After about 1.8 km is a fork where choose uphill Right to get to VF Lipella.

- - > see Approach route on this Map

. . . (2nd hiking: After exiting (N46.5336 E12.0438) from top of the tunnel, walk 0.65 km North on roughly-horizontal ledge to the bottom start (N46.5386 E12.0422) of the "real" via ferrata).


Most of the non-easy-climbing sections of this route are protected by a steel cable (about 12 mm diameter) attached to the rock by means of steel posts inserted into the rock. These posts are often located with spacing frequency similar to a multi-pitch bolted rock climb -- so the first climber could clip quickdraws and rope just above each of these while climbing.
. . . (but unlike a bolted rock climb, on most via ferrata routes in the Dolomites the exact positioning of the posts is not designed to help prevent a falling climber from hitting dangerous rock features or protruding fixed hardware below).

Anyway since there is a steel cable connecting between each pair of anchor posts, it's simpler and weight-saving to leave the rope and quickdraws home -- instead have a "via ferrata kit" attached to your harness and clip the carabiners of the VF kit to the steel cable.

The Via Ferrata kit has two lanyards or leashes, each with an automatic-locking carabiner, and the lanyards/leashes are connected to the climber's harness through a shock-absorbing unit - (because unlike most situations with a fall during belayed rope-protected climbing, the impact force if the climber falls with a VF kit on a VF route might be very large).

warning: Even if the VF kit and VF cable are attached and working properly to prevent a falling climber from going all the way down to the ground, serious injury could easily result from a fall, because there are hard objects that can be hit with high impact: installed hardware such as steel rungs intended for Aid, the steel posts which attach the steel cable for Protection to the rock, protruding rock horns or ledges, or even another climber. Therefore . . .
Falling while correctly using a normal VF kit is a very bad idea. Each climber must be sure to have sufficient strength and skills and endurance to be sure never to take a fall.

note: There are other strategies for Protection than the "normal" Via Ferrata kit. One is for the climber to be connected to a rope, and that rope used by another climber above (with special equipment and skill) to belay the climber below. Another is to correctly use a special VF kit like the Skylotec Skyrider.


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