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'98 - '00

Like its neighbouring Val Gardena, Val di Fassa is famous first and foremost as a winter ski resort. It also hosts numerous worthwhile icefalls, but unfortunately these do not always come into condition. It is worth enquiring about their condition before setting out; those by Fontanazzo tend stay in good condition and are excellent.

Getting there: via the motorway A22, exit at Egna-Ora, and follow the signs for Val di Fiemme and Cavalese, then follow the signs for Val di Fassa and Canazei.
Alternatively from Val Gardena via the Passo Sella, from Arabba via Passo Pordoi or from Alleghe and Malga Ciapela via Passo Fedaia.

Walking up to Cascata di Bouz. The icefall is clearly visible from the road that leads from Pian Fedaia to Passo Fedaia.
Photo Nicola Tondini

- Introduction
- Val Gardena
- Southern Sella
- Val di Fassa

14) Fata di Cristallo 80m II, 4+ NE 1800m
Abseil from trees
15) Val Udai 120m IV, 4+ E 1500m
Two icefalls far from the hustle and bustle of Val di Fassa. The icefall in Val Udai comes into condition only after long periods of intense cold since it faces east and receives large amounts of water.

Approach: by car to Ronch (follow the road to Val Gardeccia) and then on foot along the path No. 579; alternatively, park at Mazzin and continue on foot along the path No. 580. Fata di Cristallo can be glimpsed through the forest high to the left immediately after the point where the two paths meet. Walk directly up the slope to the icefall. Allow 1hr 30 mins for the walk-in.
The icefall Val Udai is reached by continuing along the path No. 580 until the edge of the forest, from where it can easily be seen. Allow 2 hours for the walk-in.

16) Candela di Duron 50m IV, 6 N 1700m
On foot leftwards for about 30 mins to the forest road.
This icicle was first climbed last year and is difficult to reach, climb and descend from.

Approach: park at Campitello and walk along the forest track into the Val Duron. After about 30 mins an inaccessible looking gully appears high to the left. Walk up this, past several rocky outcrops, to reach this spectacular icicle. Allow 1hr – 1hr 30mins for the walk-in.

17) Cascata di Bouz 55m III, 5 W 2200m
The contrast between the black limestone slabs and the blue icefall is highly evocative.

Approach: reach Passo Fedaia and park at the Pian dei Fiacconi ski lift. Follow the path westwards past the Col del Bous spur. Enter the wide valley and continue upwards until the icefall comes into view on the West Face of the Col del Bous. Ski mountaineering equipment will be found necessary for the approach. Allow 1hr 20mins.
Alternatively, snow conditions permitting, ski down NW from the top of the Pian dei Fiacconi ski lift (30 mins).

18) Gussela 50m I, 2+ (3) E 1950m
Abseil from trees
19) Candelino d’Orione 70m II, 5+ N 1950m
Abseil from trees
Two fun climbs just a few minutes from the Ciampac piste.

Approach: drive to Penia and park at the car at the cable car. From the top of this descend westwards for about 15 mins to Gussela's start of the large slabs.
For Candelino d’Orione continue on, beneath the summit of Crepa Neigra, to a small gully with the icefall. Allow 45 mins for the walk-in.

20) Agghiac-ciante
90m (+20m)
III, 6 N 1600m
21) Rio Pelos 200m II+, 5 N 1600m
Abseil from trees
22) Candele facili 70m II, 4+ NW 1700m
Abseil from trees

Agghiacciante, when in condition, is definitely an exceptionally beautiful and difficult icefall. The final 20m have not yet been climbed.
The nearby and by now classic Rio Pelos is well worth giving a go. It seems to have it all: a ramp, icicles and a small, sharp gully. Candele facili forms rarely but is good fun. All three are visible from the road.

Approach: drive to Campitello and park at the car at the Col Rodella cable car. For Agghiacciante follow the cross country piste north along the valley bottom for 10 mins; walk up the slope when directly below the icefall. Allow 1 hr for the walk-in.
For Rio Pelos walk across the cross country piste and up through the forest to its base. Allow 30 mins for the walk-in.
For Candele facili follow the cross country piste south along the valley bottom for 15 mins to beneath the gully that leads up to its base. Allow 45 mins for the entire walk-in.

The icefall Agghiacciante with the final, as yet unclimbed section - photo Nicola Tondini

23) Candelina del Lusi 40m II, 4+ NW 1700m
Abseil from tree
24) Fontanazzo left 210m II, 5 NW 1450m
On foot, along the path from the top of the gully
25) Fontanazzo right 150m II, 4 NW 1450m
Fixed abseil
Beautiful, highly popular classics that can get overcrowded at the weekends. Almost always in condition. La Candelina del Lusi is a good fall to add to the Fontanazzo combinations.

Approach: from Moena drive to Fontanazzo and turn off right at the signpost for Pasticceria Fassana (great cakes!). Park here, cross the bridge and head north along the cross country piste for about 10 mins to beneath the snow-filled gully. Walk up this for a further 30 mins to reach Candelina del Lusi.
For the Fontanazzo icefalls cross the bridge and follow the cross country piste for 200 m to where it meets a river bed: walk up this keeping to the left up to the cone shaped base of the left icefall (20 mins). Fontanazzo right is reached by walking up the river bed and canyon (30 mins).

For further information or those wishing to be accompanied by a UIAGM certified Mountain Guide, please contact Nicola Tondini (mobile phone 0336/696698).

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