Punta San Matteo
One of the most popular, classic outings in this glacial environment. A long itinerary with significant height gain.
Rifugio Forni is the starting point for this ascent. From Bormio in Alta Valtellina (reach this from Sondrio in Lombardy or, for those coming from the Trentino, by crossing Passo dell'Aprica) continue up the valley to S. Caterina Valfurva and from here turn off left up the steep road to the mountain hut. Telephone prior to departure to check the road conditions on this final stretch.
From the car park at Rifugio dei Forni follow the road to the dam (hyrdrographic right). Cross this at its base and put your skis on the hydrographic left. Ascend the valley, either by traversing high or by ascending up the valley bottom. Continue past Rifugio Branca which is clearly visible on the opposite side of the valley to reach the base of the Forni glacier.
Continue upwards in the same direction and pass the large descent gully wide that descends from Pizzo S. Giacomo to reach the glacier proper. Continue on its right-hand side (hydrographic left) past a level plain. After this the line of ascents turns right and ascends the steep slope, weaving its way without difficulties past the large open crevasses. This section leads to the base of the wide glacial slopes at the base of the north face of S. Matteo. Start ascending rightwards towards S. Matteo and then turn off left up steeper slopes. Once past these reach a plain and then continue towards the S. Matteo face, then rightwards once again to ascend up a nice slope which coasts beneath seracs and leads to the final slopes. Climb these left and zigzag up to the summit crest. Follow this right (west) to the summit.
Descend along the line of ascent.
Normal ski mountaineering equipment.
Ortles - Cevedale Tabacco, foglio 08, 1:25.000
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