from Forcella Staulanza
Superb circumnavigation of one of the most beautiful peaks of the Dolomites, quite strenuous and challenging, but full of satisfaction and with exceptional views all around.
At the beginning of the season, due to the accumulation of snow, you may need crampons and ice ax.
Author's Notes: I thank for the company my friend Armando, who appears in many photographs. Please consider that the GPS track along the Val d'Arcia, traveled on snowfield, may not accurately follow the route of the path 480.
You can reach Forcella Staulanza (BL), along the SP251, from Selva di Cadore or Zoldo Alto. Near the Refuge Staulanza there is a parking area.
You take the trail in the meadow in front of the shelter, enter the forest and climb along the path 472.
The trail continues for long, with ups and downs along the mountainside of the Pelmetto:
In this section of the trail, the view turns to the Civetta, and towards the Moiazza:
After passing some forks, at locations called Pala de le Dee, Col de le Crepe Cavallere, Le Mandre, and I Lach, you get to the south side of the mountain, from where you can see La Fessura, that is the clevis that separates the Pelmetto from the Pelmo:
You go on, and after a final up and down, you reach the Refuge Venezia:
From there, the less determined hiker may retrace his steps, and however consider having made a satisfactory excursion.
While in order to continue and complete the circumnavigation of the mountain, you climb up a steep gravel path:
up to a fork, at a boulder:
at which you turn right in the direction of Val d'Arcia, path 480.
You first walk on the mountainside, then start to climb more steeply:
You first reach a saddle, from which you take to the left, on a path that has some equipped section:
At the beginning of the season you can find snowfields:
With a last effort, you reach the clevis:
In front of you, is the Val d'Arcia, which descends along the base of the north wall of the Pelmo:
You go down along the valley, following the path of gravel, with possible snowfields, and in the last part in a forest, until you reach back the starting point.
■ gb, 2014-06-22