The trail Via delle Bocchette is said to be the most spectacular via ferrata in Brenta Dolomites and one of the best in whole Alps. It’s technically easy but offers great exposure and excellent views. I was impressed!
Via ferrata Bocchette is part of the Adamello Brenta Nature Park. It’s perfect as hut-to-hut trekking and it usually takes 3 to 5 days to walk the whole. I was only on the two parts: Bocchette Alte and Bocchette Centrali which are considered to be the most beautiful.
The trail is easy if you have good head for heights. I read that Bocchette Alte is graded as C but comparing to other via ferratas that I have walked, I would say, that there are parts B and the most of the trail is A. My friends, who walked the whole Bocchette, until the refuge XII Apostoli, told that the last section is the most difficult and descending on the glacier required crampons and an ice axe.
Although the via ferrata is technically easy, sometimes the weather can thwart your plans. My friends one year ago in August were unable to hike it because of icing. This year the weather was better and even clouds which are common in these mountains in the afternoon, didn’t spoil us the views.
Via ferrata Bocchette Alte
We started our trip from the refuge Tuckett. The trail leads to Tuckett pass (Bocca di Tuckett), where the via ferrata starts.
Far away on the above photo you can see also the glacier Tuckett (Vedretta di Tuckett). Reportedly one year ago it was two times bigger and it required crampons and an ice axe. This year the equipment wasn’t necessary. We were walking on stones between remains of the glacier. I was impressed by these huge ice stones and colors of the ice!
The beginning of Bocchette Alte was a bit difficult because of icing in some places and few centimeters of fresh snow which fell the last day. Further it was only pleasant trip in beautiful surrounding.
Steeper places on the via ferrata are secured by metal steps so it’s easy to climb there.
Brenta Dolomites have totally different character than other mountains that I have seen so far. Varied shapes sometimes resembled me sand buildings that I was making as a child at a sea and colorful rocks looks like someone has poured it with a black paint. Incredible!
The descent of via ferrata leads on a very exposed steep mount with numerous ladders.
Further down through talus deposits and after 9 hours we got to the refuge Alimonta. It’s a best place if you plan a trip on next sections of Bocchette via ferrata, however we only ate there and went down to refuge Casinei. We were during August weekend, we didn’t make reservations enough early and we managed to book places only in Tuckett. For a next night, Alimonta and Brentei refuges were full so we made reservations in Casinei, which is 800 m lower than Alimonta. We were even thinking of changing our plans and stay two nights in Tuckett but it was also full and the staff didn’t allow us to sleep there on the floor. By the way, later I learned that in Alimonta it was possible to stay on the floor and they provided mattresses and blankets but me and my friend have already went down to Casinei.
Via ferrata Bocchette Centrali
From the refuge Casinei it took us about 3 hours to get back to Alimonta. It’s a very scenic trail with great views on Cima Tosa and a small cave.
From Alimonta it’s about 1 hour to the starting point of Bocchette Centrali. In the meantime you will see the glacier Vedretta degli Sfulmini, which you can easily bypass walking on stones.
Most of the via ferrata leads on flat paths which traverse mountains. In good weather the views were excellent!
And my favourite point of the trail – Campanile Basso! Huge vertical wall, I don’t know how high it is, but I think 200 – 300 m. I just couldn’t stop looking at it and I dreamed of climbing it some day :) Just look on a movie how great it is!
This section of Bocchette is shorter than Alte and it took us about 2,5 hours to get to the end. Further, the trail leads to the refuge Brentei. From this point we went down to Casinei, this time the other trail, which turned out not be so beautiful, and then down to the parking, passing by nice and high Vallesinella Waterfall.
We finished our trip in Brenta Dolomites and transfered to Lienz Dolomites. That mountains aren’t so breathtaking but via ferratas were more challenging. More coming soon ;)