via ferrata Campanile Colesei
dedicated to Bepi Martini and friendship
Spectacular new via ferrata with splendid views of the eastern Dolomites and Val Comelico. The challenging via ferrata crosses the narrow summit of the Campanile Colesei and leads to the panoramic peak of Croda Sora i Colesei
Approach and starting point
The via ferrata is easily accessible from two different starting points. Depending on whether you come from South Tyrol or Belluno, both Passo Monte Croce and Rifugio Lunelli are good starting points.
To the passo Monte Croce 1.636m
By car: For private cars there is a car park on the left side of the road (north) directly at the passo Monte Croce itself. The parking spot is due to payment in the main season. (4 Euro per day – according to 2020)
By public transport
There are good train connections to San Candido. From there, in high season, buses leave every half hour to Sesto and then to passo Monte Croce.
To the lunelli hut 1.568m
By car: If you go up from the beautiful Valgrande, you can park your car at the Lunelli hut and start the tour from there.
By public transport: From Padola take the SAF bus to the “Localita Moié”. From there you can reach the Lunelli hut in about 1 hour walk.
From the passo Monte Croce 1.636m
450 m – 1,5 hrs
From the passo, take path no. 124 southwards until you reach Forcella Plan della Biscia (1,942 m) next to Cima Colesei. From there you continue along the old and wide road from the war. A few hundred meters after a prominent curve, you will find a sign and a small stone man. From there you turn left (2.010m) to arrive to the attack of the via ferrata. This climb is not yet well trodden on, but is marked with red dots. It is advisable to wear a helmet in advance, as in the last section you are just below the via ferrata and therefore exposed to a greater risk of falling rocks.
From the Lunelli hut 1.568m
510 m – 1,5 hrs
From the hut you climb up to the Forcella Plan della Biscia (1,942 m) via path no. 171 or alternatively via the wide path no. 155. From there you continue along the old and wide road from the war. A few hundred meters after a prominent curve, you will find a sign and a small stone man. From there you turn left (2.010m) to arrive to the attack of the via ferrata. This climb is not yet well trodden on, but is marked with red dots. It is advisable to wear a helmet in advance, as in the last section you are just below the via ferrata and therefore exposed to a greater risk of falling rocks.
2,5 hrs – level C/D
The entrance is located in a small rubble chute in which the steel cable begins. The path starts off in the same demanding way (D) and then follows a steep rock pillar (C/D) with quite homogeneous difficulty.
After the first difficult third, it continues in easier terrain (A/B) until you reach the ridge of the Arzalpenturm after a traverse (C) and a steep step (C/D).
Crossing the ridge, one reaches a small saddle next to the actual summit of the Campanile Colesei. Here, there is a one-way regulation. The actual summit of the tower can only be reached with an additional variant. One climbs down from the saddle along the steel cable south (C). Soon one reaches a junction with the variant. If you like, you can climb the Campanile Colesei (C/D) and get back to this point in one round. From the junction, follow the path downwards to a saddle (C) from where the steel cable on the opposite side climbs up to the plateau of the Croda Sora I Colesei (C).
To the passo Monte Croce
Via forcella Colesei
600 m downwards – 1,5 hrs
From the exit follow the red dots to the west and after a short while you will reach a signpost. Here you can ascend in northeastern direction to the panoramic peak of the Arzalpenkopf (Cima Sora Colesei) 2.291m. Then you descend to the signpost and follow the path to the west to the forcella Colesei. From there, the path descends northwards along a partly secured path. At the end of the scree, you meet path 15, via which you soon reach the passo Monte Croce. In the area below the forcella Colesei there is often old snow until summer. If this is the case, the descent over the sentiero Sala is preferable.
INSIDE TIP There is a fortification tunnel through the Croda Sora i Colesei, which was built in the between the two great wars. To visit it you climb from the forcella Colesei as described above in direction passo MonteCroce. In the lower third of the debris field you can see tunnel entrances on the orographic right side. Access the tunnel through the easiest one. Now you can follow it to reach the other end. Once you get out of the other side follow the traces of the original path or take the wide path to the Forcella della Biscia and descend from there along the same route as the ascent. This bunker is not publicly marked or signposted. You enter it at your own risk. This variant extends the tour by about 40 minutes.
Via Sentiero Sala
680 m downwards – 80 Hm uphill – 2 hrs
From the end of the ferrata, follow the red dot to the west and after a short while you will reach a signpost. Here you follow the path to the south in the direction of rifugio Berti hut. At the Rifugio Sala hut you turn off at another signpost to the Sentiero Sala (124). Now follow this partly secured path until you reach the route from the start, which you follow to the passo Monte Croce.
To the rifugio lunelli hut
via rifugio Berti hut
680 m downwards – 2 hrs
From the exit follow the red dots to the west and you will soon reach a signpost. Now you follow the path south to the rifugio Berti hut (1.950m), which invites you to stop for a break. From there you follow the path 101 to the Lunelli hut.