Rockfax Description
Up until recently this has been something of a forgotten via ferrata - the cables had fallen into disrepair and it was officially closed between 2008 and 2012. However the route was re-equipped in 2012/13 and is now in excellent condition. Well marked and with taut cables, the via ferrata snakes its way up the immense slab of Punta Serauta, on the east flank of the Marmolada (3343m), the highest peak in the Dolomites. It finishes at the second of the Malga Ciapela cable car stations. This provides the recommended descent route, or the opportunity to take the third cable car to the top station where the views are truly spectacular.

Because of the altitude and environment this via ferrata is not to be underestimated. The route should only be tackled with a stable weather forecast and good visibility. For those planning to descend on foot (unless you retrace your steps) you will need glacier crossing experience and the appropriate equipment.
The climbing on the via ferrata is not outstanding and indeed the long section up the slab can feel like a bit of an ordeal. However the situations are fantastic, particularly on the final ridge-line. There is added appeal for budding historians in the form of a war museum at the cable car station and numerous war remains on the final section. All in all the route can be recommended to anyone searching for something a bit different, or for those who have worked their way through the more classic via ferratas and want something a little off the beaten track.
Note - The route has changed since its re-equipping and the 'Via Ferrata Eterna' route line marked on the Tabacco maps is now outdated. The start has moved further uphill and to the west.
Approach - Take the Fedaia Pass from either Canazei to the west or Caprile to the east. Drive to the top of the pass and park at Rifugio Fedaia located at the east end of the reservoir Lago di Fedaia. For those planning on descending via the Malga Ciapela cable car, it is possible to park at the cable car station and get the bus up the pass to Rifugio Fedaia, but this gives you less time to complete the via ferrata before the last lift back down.
Follow the ski piste up the steep gravel track behind, and to the left of, Rifugio Fedaia, following red markings and signs for 'Ferrata Eterna'. After 10-15 minutes on the steep gravel track, just after a sharp switchback to the right, you will see 'F.E.' marked on a boulder on the left with a sign for the ferrata above. Turn left here following red/orange circular markings up through scrub and scree heading for a large boulder just below a green col. When you reach the col, follow wooden stakes and paint rightwards uphill. At this point if often feels like you are going too high up the hillside, but continue until you join a scree path which traverses left to the start of the route. There are several large plaques and signs at the base of the route warning you of its Alpine nature and difficulty. The route times on the signs here tend to be a bit pessimistic.
VF - The route gets going straight away and is immediately quite steep with two successive exposed smeary traverses. This is followed by a shallow chimney with sections of stemples to provide assistance. From here the gradient decreases and the wire angles around a shoulder to bring you onto the main slab proper. Follow the well-tensioned wire on its left as it winds its way up a succession of steep slabs. This section is more akin to steep walking as opposed to climbing and quickly gets tiring. After an hour or so, you should reach the top of the main slab and join a slightly loose ridge-line.
Follow the wire as it weaves and undulates along the ridge-line, past some stunning situations and fantastic views. Overcome two larger peaks on the ridge, until a long section of down-climbing on new stemples to the left of the old cast iron stemples, brings you down into a gully. Descend this, then contour round passing through a little hole in the rock to join a terrace path leading past many old war buildings and ruins. This is the start of the open air war museum, usually reached from the mid station of the Malga Ciapela cable car. Heading right here takes you up to a panoramic viewpoint on a small summit, and turning left takes you to the cable car station. It is worth exploring the ruins if time permits.
Descent - The usual and recommended descent is down the Malga Ciapela cable car, which avoids crossing the glacier.
For those wanting to descend on foot, you can either retrace your steps or descend the glacier to the north. At the bottom of the glacier you can rejoin the original vehicle track you started on. Make sure you have the appropriate equipment if choosing to descend the glacier. © Rockfax

UKC Logbook Description
This route has been re-cabled and is now officially open again.

Ticklists: NTU Climbing - Van Club.

yelotango 08/Jul Solo
David Stevens 07/Sep/16 -

Ascended and then descended again

Steph Mitchell 07/Sep/16 -

Descended too as did not have gear for walking down the glacier. Interesting!

tomB 28/Aug/16 -
with Juliette
Juliette Baker 28/Aug/16 -
with Tom
barrington1978 16/Aug/16 -
dan tipper 15/Aug/16 -
will_lake 06/Aug/16 Solo O/S

Boring slog to start up the slab but nice airy ridge to compensate. Slid precariously down the glacier for the descent

wilf 17/Jul/16 -

4 hours from base, excellent VF in fabulous terrain.

with ed, Tom, Andy
Dilwat 04/Sep/15 Solo O/S
SurferStan 04/Sep/15 Solo O/S
whiteexplorer 04/Sep/15 Solo O/S
with joe
Hidden 31/Aug/15 Lead
Hidden 31/Aug/15 Lead
fuzzysheep01 13/Aug/15 Solo O/S
with Fran Ibison
Hidden 20/Jul/15 -
Hidden 01/Aug/14 -
Mike-W-99 12/Jul/14 -

Good but a few very loose sections.

with Fiona
Fiona Reid 12/Jul/14 -

The odd loose bit doesn't detract from what is a pretty good route. When you first see the cable car station and think it's not far away but there's still *a lot* of climbing to go. Got the cable car down to save knees and need to carry glacier gear then bus back to start point. Not too hard but a serious route which needs decent weather.

with Mike
p.j.deacon 27/Sep/13 Lead O/S

A new start about 100m higher up the hill on the north face is designed so you can traverse from the lift. The cable is new and very tight now, but a bit shorter than before. Starts hard onto an easy slab and then a very beautiful ridge. Took the glacier down, meaning had to carry extra gear, but well worth it.

with Kelly Richardson
Hidden 09/Aug/13 2nd
Ian JL 09/Aug/13 Lead
efrance24234 ??/2011 -

awfull condition .... large gaps between cables so as weather closed in we backed off as we wouldnt be able to see next cable.... bit gutted but the right decision

Rob Griffiths 23/Jul/10 -

In my view this is the best VF in the Dolomites. In 2010 the cable was missing in sections which gave the whole thing more of an alpine feel. It has now been fully restored (2013) so it is well worth doing. Carry gear to decend via the glacier as the walk back to the col from the valley floor is a ball ache.

lithos 13/Sep/09 -

this is in a shocking state - many wires on slab are BROKEN or missing *requires* soloing some parts. Other wires are loose and very very dodgy. Its been closed since 2005/6 officically However its a great route and quite ok if you are used to scrambling and can handle the exposure/unprotected parts

with Pete Bradshaw, julie
JohnDaly 03/Jul/07 -

Long and strenuous. Route is officially closed due to poor state of cabling.

with David
andy_pemberton ?/Jul/05 Solo

Had quite the solo day out. Did the whole of the route as a rock climb (without using the metal work for holds, just for safety). Big gap in the wires in the middle and other bits where the wires were connected using old prussic 5mm cord! Some pretty technical stuff on the traverse. Got to the cable car station and it was shut, with loads of builders building things. Nearly blagged a lift down with some equipment in the cable car but the foreman threw me out. Walked (west?) down and down and down back to the road. Brilliant.

Hidden ?/Jun/05 AltLd
Chris the Tall ?/Sep/03 -

A fantastic, epic day. Snow on the ridge slowed us down, got the cable car times wrong and thought we have to spend the night in the toilets. Ended up leading three grateful Germans to safety on a three hour descent

with Paul
jamie ward 19/Jul/03 Lead O/S
with Tony Buj
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