The obvious Capo d’Uomo arête exerts a strong draw as you observe it from the path that leads to this ridge, and gives the impression that it sinks straight down into the sea. I was very torn about whether to equip this or not, but then the idea of establishing a route about the magical Tuscan sea got the better of me. In the end I was relieved and while I rested close to the tower it occurred to me that I could dedicated the stupendous arête to legendary Walter Bonatti, whom I had the honour and fortune of meeting: a great man and one of alpinism's great, who spent many a day here at the Argentario.
I hope that every now and then his spirit rests above this splendid sea and continues to help all those who come to climb here love the mountains and adventure, and perhaps even dream a little bit... The rock is excellent whitish grey limestone with small pockets and numerous other feathers. The climbing is varied and satisfying, past corners and slabs, arêtes and pillars. The upper section contains an exciting, exposed traverse and this is the grand finale to this varied, intense and unexpected climb which is destined to become a great classic.
Reach the island of Argentario in Tuscany and drive to Porto Santo Stefano. At the first roundabout at the port turn left and drive up Vallone del Campone for circa 3,5 km. At the fork turn off left and park immediately after having driven over the hill, with view onto the sea. Walk down the dirt road to circa 300m, take the road right to reach the large curve which ascends upwards. From here take the path which breaks off left to then follow the ridge towards to the tower. Close to the tower scramble down the short steep terrain to reach the base of the cliff. Take care while walking past the loose scree during the descent (30 minutes)
P1: Corner, then slab along the arete, then climb left past a short wall and then back right to reach the belay. 6a - 28m - 10 bolts
P2: Continue right up slabs and then the steep face. This leads to a leaning corner; ascend this then traverse right to reach a arete which leads to the belay. 5c - 35m - 15 bolts
P3: Continue straight up the corner, then traverse right up easy terrain to the base of the summit pillar.. 3c - 25m - 6 bolts
P4: Climbing rightwards then continue straight up to the top of the pillar. 5b - 32m - 11 bolts
P5: Right once again to the aree and continue up this up friable rock to then continue left to the belay. 3a - 30m - 4 bolts
P6: Walk along the arete for circa 10m, then exit right at the first bolt into the face and continue traversing to the second notch. Climb this to the arete and then easily on to the belay. 5c - 37m - 10 bolts
P7: Continue to the right of the arete and follow this until it becomes easier. Continue up easier stepped terrain to reach the final belay just below the tower. 3a - 55m - 5 bolts
61 10mm stainless steel bolts + 16 on the belays.
Normal climbing gear, 15 quickdraws, helmet.
If necessary it is possible to climb easily left from the base of pitch 4. Pitch 6 can be avoided by walking to the left of the arete.
Note: the gear was generously provided by Matteo Tramontano of the Grosseto bouldering wall K2climbinggym
www.k2climbinggym.it - email@example.com - 339.5463216
Guide Alpine Alta Valtellina
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