This remote via ferrata follows the ridge-line to the north the Catinaccio group and is superb. Whilst wire protects the harder sections, the majority of the route is an exposed ridge scramble. The views are outstanding and it is worth the long approach to view this rarely explored region of the Dolomites. Because of the remote location of this via ferrata it is best done with an overnight stay at the nearby Rifugio Alpe di Tires. In this way it can also be combined with Laurenzi - Molignon to provide a fantastic multi-day round trip.
Approach (see map on page 93) - The approach to the start of Sentiero Massimiliano is immediately behind and slightly to the right (when looking uphill) of Rifugio Alpe di Tires. The path is unmarked and not signed - don't be tempted to follow either path 4 or 2. Follow the path steeply uphill through scree as it angles towards a large gully.
VF - A short section of cable gets you established in the gully proper, where you follow red circles painted on the rocks. Be mindful of parties above and below you here as the rock is very loose. Follow a right-angled red paint marking (denotes path making a sharp turn, not a pointing arrow) to the next longer section of wire that leads up to a saddle just below the main ridge-line. Follow wire on the left to the ridge-line proper with excellent views of the Alpi di Siusi, Geisler group and Austria.
Follow the wide ridge west, with no wire, to a large cairn on a little mound. From here it is easy to see the route as it undulates along the ridge-line. Continue following the red painted circles as the route then descends to a rock archway, which you pass through. Some steeper down-climbing on a slack wire follows with another stint along the ridge-line. This leads to a shallow chimney that needs to be down climbed with aid of a metal stemple. Then follow a good path, first to the right of the ridge then back onto the ridge proper, descending then rising to a wooden stile. Cross the stile and continue along the ridge until you reach a col with an escape route left (signed 'notaussteig') which leads down to path 4 and Rifugio Alpe di Tires.
Continue west following the increasingly steep path and intermittent wire as it leads up to the subsidiary summit, again taking care with loose rock. From the subsidiary summit, drop down slightly then follow intermittent wire to scramble up to the main summit, Cima di Terrarossa (Roterdspitz, 2655m) and the end of the route.
Descent - From the summit of Cima di Terrarossa continue heading west to descend through pasture land, still following the red paint marks and occasional cairn until you reach the large path 4. Turn left and follow path 4 first to the south, then east back to Rifugio Alpe di Tires. © ROCKFAX
Photo: Sentiero Massimiliano on a perfect day © James Rushforth
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