Classic routes – grade V to VII | FreeWheeling Dolomites
FreeWheeling Dolomites

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Classic routes – grade V to VII

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The number and variety of climbing routes on display in the Dolomites is probably unrivaled in the world, thanks to their 16000 km extension and the around 50 different mountain ranges that make them up.

Just to clear things up, with “Classic” we mean an ascent of moderate difficulty (up to grade VI-VI+) with traditional protection and a good knowledge of the route, mostly gathered by many repetitions by other climbers.

This section is about classic routes of easy and moderate grade. It goes without saying that the examples here cannot possibly be exhaustive. Rather, they represent an overview giving a taste of what to expect in the pursuit of these Classic climbing routes.

type of activity

climbing classic route

activity level

from medium to expert

customised programme

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a list of interesting classic climb

LASTOI DI FORMIN, West Face

The Lastoi di Formin are an impressive mountain group sidelining the hairpin turns of the road leading from Cortina d’Ampezzo up to Giau Pass. This mountain’s main feature is a huge summit plateau and a vertical 300 metres cliff to get up to it.

AMEDEO route, Marcella tower, Lastoi di Formin, grade V+, 220 metres. This tower is part of the Lastoi di Formin great wall, the route ascends with an intermediate grade right in the middle of the wall, along a pretty line of small cracks. Rock quality is always excellent and the pleasure is guaranteed.

PIZ CHIAVACEZ

Chiavacez’s south face is one of the most popular in the Dolomites, right by the road. It offers many enjoyable routes on solid rock. Its only downside can be the queues on the route starts. Half-way, the cliff is cut by a ledge. Routes starting from the base end up on the ledge, whilst routes leading to the summit start from the ledge.

SHOUBERT, grade VI-, 250 metres. Elegant route sporting some athletic climbing on cracks and slabs.
VINATZER DIEHDRAL, grade V+ A0, 220 metres. This is one of the routes starting from the halfway ledge, a wonderful one among chimneys and cracks.

CIMA SCOTONI

Perhaps located right in one of the most charming corners of the Dolomites, it looks like a smooth rocky blackboard broken by two ledges. From the top our view spans from Val Badia underneath to the Dolomites’ giants of the likes of Antelao, Pelmo, Marmolada and Civetta.

FACHIRI ROUTE, grade VI, 400 metres. This is one of champion Enzo Cozzolino‘s masterpieces. As opposed to the first route on the cliff (Lacedelli route), this one sports a slightly more consistent and homogeneous grade on surprisingly solid rock.

THREE PEAKS of LAVAREDO

These peaks’ charm, an icon among Sesto’s Dolomites, attracts not just the climbers, but also many tourists crowding the paths around the base, thanks to convenient road access. Despite the crowds and rock quality not always the best, their profile and their elegance is like a magnet for the climbers.

DIBONA’s EDGE, Great Peak of Lavaredo, grade IV, 550 metres. The north-east edge of the great peak is the one starting from the scree slopes at the base of those epic north faces and leading all the way up to the summit cross. Climbing is never too strenuous and the views over the north face are just wonderful.

YELLOW EDGE, Small Peak of Lavaredo, grade VI-, 300 metres. This is another classic that any climber would want in its logbook. The route follows a daring edge line, looking for a passage to the summit among yellow overhanging rocks and roofs.

PIZ DA LECH

Thanks to a convenient chairlift from Corvara in Badia we will get to the base of Sella massif, at a small basin whose surrounding cliffs can make a climber feel small and a little scared perhaps.
Sas deles Diesc and Sas deles Nu, Piz da Lech south-eastern cliffs , offer excellent rock quality, a high-altitude experience and the convenience of a very short approach.

DORIGATTI, GAMBISI route, Piz da Lech south-eastern cliff, grade V+, 270 metres:. The black and yellow wall of Piz da Lech will catch our eye as soon as we get off the chairlift.
This route manages to overcome the impressive cliff by means of chimneys, cracks and slabs. There’s nothing missing here!

CASTIGLIONI, DETASSIS route, Sas deles Diesc, grade V, 350 metres: The anfitheatre-like wall carries on to the left-hand side with Sas de les Diesc. This suggested route is mostly along chimneys leading to the summit of this cute peak, with grades around IV and a pitch at V.
AERO FOBIA route, Sas deles Nu, grade VI+, 280 metres: The impressive cliff of Sas Deles Nu, completing the anfitheatre, rises up from the impressive rocky gap visible from down below. This is a fairly demanding route which first overcomes some serious overhangs then, once past the edge, carries on along some magnificient slabs.

SAS DELA CRUSC

This summit’s west cliff impressive size dominates Val Badia. Sunset paints a fascinating red shade, enchanting onlookers from down below and, moreover, whoever is still struggling on the rocks. Climbers first get a comfortable lift to a medieval monastery thanks to the chairlifts. Then, they leave the gentle pastures to tackle a rocky foot with stones and gravel. Once at the base, here is where some of the nicest and most demanding routes in the Dolomites start.

MAYERL DIHEDRAL, sas dela Crusc west cliff, grade VI+, 300+ 250 metres: Despite the overall higher grade, this is the line tackling the cliff’s weakest point. The route takes us through some demanding climbing rarely below grade V. Rock is magnificient.

TOFANA DI ROZES, SOUTH FACE

this is a great and convoluted cliff dominating over Cortina d’Ampezzo valley. Its main feature is a 800 metre maximum vertical ascent on the vertical line falling from the main summit and lower height pillars that resemble the walls of a huge castle. Climbing is on excellent Dolomia rock; this rock is also responsible for its typical reddish colour.

ALVERA-POMPANIN route, Tofana’s first edge, grade V+, 430 metres: The route is almost always along the edge line, its climbing aerial and satisfying despite the grade always being between IV and V and just one nice dihedral pitch at V+.

COSTANTINI-GHEDINA route, Tofana second edge, grade VI-, 600 metres:. Tofana’s second and central pillar is the highest and presents the hardest routes. This route is a very coveted classic. Rock is always excellent, first on some nice grey slabs then, after a tricky travers which is also the hardest pitch, runs along the edge line until the summit.

SELLA TOWERS

these are some of the most iconic Dolomite peaks. What makes them so well known is not just their extraordinary beauty, but also their proximity to the Sella pass road, definitely making the climber’s job easier. A scenic summit and a variety of great routes are the common characteristic of each of the four towers.

MESSNER route, Second Tower, grade V+, 240 metres: A masterpiece by the great South Tyrolese champion. At the time, such a sustained route on open slabs was almost madness; nowadays is a demanding, wonderful test.
VINATZER route, Third tower, grade VI-, 350 metres: this is an elegant route on excellent rock. It tackles vertical west face through a roof sticking out of the rock more than 2 metres. A real Dolomitic gem!
MALSINER-MORODER route, fourth tower, grade VI+, 345 metres:. Fourth tower’s north face is made up of great niches, edges and cracks. Thus, this route is pretty varied and convoluted and rock quality is not always excellent. The crux pitch is a demanding overhanging wall.

MEISULES DALA BIESCES

This wall is the northern buttress to the Sella massif. This not a proper summit, rather a series of rocky ramparts ending up at a large ledge. Even if routes around here do not lead to a summit, their strong points are the excellent rock and the convenient approach just from the road.

BRUSIN route, Meisules east tower, grade VI+, 200 metres: this route involves 6 demanding pitches that, whilst wearing out our arms, will put a smile on our faces.

SIEGLINDE route, Meisules, grade V, 200 metres: this route runs along an elegant edge, with splendid crack climbing mostly at grade IV with a few sections at grade V.

FRANZ route, Meisules, grade VI+, 300 metres:. Perhaps the greatest classic on this face, it’s definitely a demanding climb requiring a good 4 to 5 effortful hours on excellent rock and great slabs.

L’NEIN route, Meisules, grade V+, 280 metres: This is one of those thoroughly satisfying and enthusing routes: it’s not the strength that matters here, but smartness and a clever foot dance.

CATINACCIO

This is the most famous group in Fassa valley. Its characteristic eastern face and its pink shade in the morning light smiles over the pastures down by the Gardeccia. Catinaccio is made up of several peaks, all of them offer solid rock and great climbing.

STEGER route, Punta Emma, grade V+, 400 metres: this is Punta Emma’s classic. Here the challenge is not so much the technical difficulty but rather its length. Its spectacular summit provides a special viewpoint on famous Torri del Vaiolet (Vaiolet’s Towers) group.

EISENSTECKEN route, Punta Emma, grade VI, 220 metres:. The relatively short north face offers a masterpiece route: a vertical wall requiring good slab climbing skills.

STEGER route, Main peak, grade VI-, 700 metres:. This route could be the launching point towards the Dolomites big walls. This is a majestic route overcoming famous Catinaccio eastern face. Luckily, most of the tricky sections are down below and rock is extraordinarily good throughout its 700 metres length.

Prices

1 personpersona2 peoplepersone
AMEDEO, pilastro marcella320 180
SHUBERT, piz chavacez 320200
DIEDRO VINATZER, piz chavacez320200
DEI FACHIRI, cima scotoni400270
SPIGOLO DIBONA, cima grande lavaredo400270
SPIGOLO GIALLO, cima piccola lavaredo400270
DULFER, Cima Grande di Lavaredo340230
DORIGATTI, GAMBISI, Piz da Lech320200
CASTIGLIONI, DETASSIS, Sas deles Diesc320200
AERO FOBIA, Sas deles Nu340230
DIEDRO MAYERL, parete ovest sas dela Crusc400270
ALVERA-POMPANIN, Primo Spigolo Tofana340230
COSTANTINI-GHEDINA, Secondo Spigolo Tofana400270
MESSNER, Seconda Torre320200
VINATZER, Terza torre350240
MALSINER- MORODER, quarta Torre350240
BRUSIN, torre orientale delle Meisules340230
SIEGLINDE, Meisules320200
FRANZ, Meisules340230
L'NEIN, Meisules320200
STEGER, Punta Emma340230
EISENSTECKEN, Punta Emma340230
STEGER, Cima pricipale430300

Prices are intended per person. A guide is needed for every two participants.

 

INCLUDED IN THE ‘GUIDE-ONLY’ PRICE

  • mountain guide, UIAGM/IFMGA certified
  • customised plan
  • technical equipment
  • Transfer from/ to hotel

 

ALL-INCLUSIVE pricing is available on request, as this is calculated based on the specific agreed plan.

INCLUDED IN THE ALL-INCLUSIVE PRICE:

  • mountain guide, UIAGM/IFMGA certified
  • customised plan
  • technical equipment
  • Transfer from/ to hotel
  • half-board hotel or hut accommodation during the activity
  • bed and breakfast accommodation the night previous to the start of the activity

NOT INCLUDED IN THE PRICE:

  • drinks or lunches
  • any transport involving chairlifts, cable cars or taxis.