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Cascata Per Leo

First ascent: Probable f.a. Beppe Ballico & Marco Milanese il 21/12/2010
By: Beppe Ballico
Area: Dolomites, Group: Sorapiss, Peak: Croda Marcora, Height: 1600m, Country: Italy, Region: Veneto

Clearly visible from the SS51 Alemagna road which leads to Cortina d'Ampezzo, the Cascata Per Leo is an aesthetically perfect line which, when formed, attracts the gaze of all ice climbers. Due to the fact that it rarely comes into condition - its orientation and relatively low altitude (1500m) certainly don't help - it is similar to a beautiful woman that needs to be courted carefully. Beware: when considering a repeat, carefully check the quantity of ice but above all the solidity as this is often extremely precarious.

GETTING THERE

From Tai di Cadore (Bl) drive past San Vito and park the car close to the old Customs Office (1117m), on the narrow road which descends leftwards. Return to the main road, cross this and reach the forest road with its traffic prohibited sign.

ACCESS

Walk along the forest road to the livestock fodder and continue onwards to reach the gully which leads to the base of the obvious icefall. 1.15 hours.

ROUTE

P1) An easy first section leads to a ledge. 50 m, 55° 60° SG (can be avoided by scambling up on foot on the left.
P2) A great pitch up ice which tends to be thin, above all close to the top. 60 m 85° SG
P3) Climb the narrow and beautiful drup with chandelier and cauliflower ice. 55m 85°/90° SG. (the pitch can be split in two but the belay is an uncomfortable hanging belay)
P4) Climb a short overhanging section up cauliflower ice and continue up vertical ice to the base of the gully 40m, 95°/90°/85° SG
P5) Continue up the beautiful gully to the top. 60m 85°, some 90° ice.

DESCENT

Abalakov abseils

GEAR

Normal ice climbing gear

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DIFFICULTY

IV, WI 5+ XR

FACE

Southwest

LENGTH

270m

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