After few days in Brenta, we relocated to Lienz Dolomites to try more difficult via ferratas. I was satisfied! The views aren’t so amazing as in Brenta but still wonderful and via ferratas were really challenging for me, especially the last one ;)
Lienz Dolomites are part of Galital Alps which are located in East Tyrol. The best starting point to do via ferratas like Laserz, Madonnen, Panorama or Seekofel, is Karlsbader Hütte. It’s located in beautiful scenery, prices are reasonable and food is good. You can leave your car on parking at Dolomitenhütte (however we walked to this place) and than walk about 2,5 hours to Karlsbader Hütte or get there by bike.
First day we came to Karlsbader Hütte and in the afternoon we made round trip on the last part of via ferrata Panorama. It’s quite easy ferrata – difficulty B. I had ambition to do all ferrata trails in free climbing style i.e. without touching a cable, only using it as security equipment and here I almost done it. I holded it only one during descent ;) The whole ferrata, from the shelter and back took us about 2,5 hours. It’s good as a warm-up before the longer ones and it offers great views on Karlsbader Hütte, the lake Laserzee and surrounding mountains.
Via ferrata Madonnen
Via ferrata Madonnen starts about 1,5 hours from Karlsbader Hütte. It beginns with about 300 m ascent to Große Gamswiesenspitze (2488 m), next it goes a bit down and then you will climb to Kleine Gamswiesenspitze (2454 m). Between the two summits there is possibility to make shortcut to the starting point. Whole via ferrata took us about 4,5 hours. We didn’t want to return to the shelter too early, so we did also the hiking trail around Teplitzer Spitze, which took us 2 more hours.
Difficulty on Madonnen is mostly between A and B/C, with one place C. Here I managed to do whole ferrata without help of cable, in even one single place :) In climbing grade I think it was from 3 to 4a, maybe 4c in some places.
The views on this ferrata are superb and there are two parts which made me the biggest pleasure. First one is traverse over high wall and the bridge.
The second one, even better – climbing on Kleine Gamswiesenspitze. It’s about 50 m high wall which makes impression that it’s vertical. Actually it isn’t, maybe only in few places. My poor climbing skills were enough to climb there but it was a challenge and the views were amazing!
Like I said on the beginning, Karlsbader Hütte is located in beautiful place so in the evening I spent about 2 hours watching wonderful clouds, mountains and sunset. See photos :)
Via ferrata Panorama
Very long via ferrata – it took us about 6 hours and there is only one place, where you can go down earlier (reportedly difficult). Take this into account when checking weather forecast. We were a bit risky, because weather forecast was showing possibly thunderstorms in the afternoon but on two previous days the forecast had been the same and there had been only few drops of rain so we hoped this day is the same (and it was :)).
The ferrata is very close to Karlsbader Hütte and it goes on few summits: Roter Turm (2700 m), Großer Laserzkopf (2718 m), Große Galitzenspitze (2710 m), Kleine Galitzenspitze (2690 m), Daumen (2720 m), Große Sandspitze (2772 m), Kleine Sandspitze (2762 m).
Most of the trail has difficulties from B to C. There is one place C/D and only few easier than B. I like challenges so it was a big fun for me! However this time I didn’t manage to accomplish the whole in free climbing style, but I did almost whole ;)
My favourite place was view on Große Sandspitze. I just love such high walls!
Like on Madonnen, also on Panorama, scenery is wonderful. Just see :)
Via ferrata Dopamine
This time we spent a night in Kerschbaumeralm Schutzhaus. It’s a cheap shelter but conditions are also poor. Shower only between 4 and 6 pm :)
In the morning we went down to Galitzenklamm, which really gave me a hard time! It’s an amusement park with few via ferratas, rope parks and some water playground for children. The entrance is paid but it’s only 5 euros.
My aim was to do for the first time via ferrata grade E. There are two like this – Dopamin and Adrenalin, and I chose the first one. According to topo, most parts are from B to D and more or less in the middle there is a crossing and you can go to “Masochist” variant which is mostly E or choose the easier one. After my successes in free climbing on previous via ferratas, I was thinking that most of the ferrata I do also in free climbing and probably only on the hardest parts I would have to use a cable.
The ferrata starts with C and my first thought when I saw it, was “what, this is C?!”. Slightly overhanging rock, slippery, no good grips… I started to wonder how looks E ;) I was a bit scary imaging it but I thought that it’s impossible that whole ferrata is so difficult. “Maybe only beginning is difficult to scare the beginners who shouldn’t try E”. In fact, yes, the whole was difficult… My friend who has been climbing already on many via ferratas, also on difficult, fell down almost on the beginning and with help of a man from staff, she returned. I decided to go further alone.
That’s the beginning:
My few friends stayed on the ground so I left them my backpack. It was good, because it was lighter and more comfortable without it, but it was bad, because I left there also my gloves. I didn’t expect I would need them because when I climb on rocks I feel better without them but here, it was impossible for me to accomplish this trail in free climbing style. I just wanted to do it somehow… I think, that in climbing grade it was from 5a to 5c, maybe 6a in some places.
After about 30 minutes my hands has already been torn, later it was of course only worse. I was thinking that maybe I shouldn’t have go here but on the other hand my ambition told me that I can’t give up because of lack of skin. “I started so I have to finish, I won’t be loser!” I wasn’t sure if I have enough strength and if I wouldn’t be force to call for help when I fall but eventually, after 2 hours I got to the top. Admittedly, I didn’t decide to try “Masochist” variant but anyway I was feeling as masochist ;) Fragments graded on this via ferrata as B or C were much harder than B or C on other via ferratas that I have made. I have only few photos, made in easier places, because on harder ones I was busy fighting for my life ;)
This 2 hours on Dopamine gave me more emotions than 6 hours on Panorama or 4 hours on Madonnen but I have to admit, I prefer them. Wonderful landscapes, difficult but not too difficult, that is what I like the most :)