Monday, February  6, 2023
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After you've finished admiring the summit and its views, retrace your steps back down the way you came. Eventually you'll reach the point where you joined the ferrata route - but now you will continue north, down the ridge, and remain on the Ferrata Nord. There are short bits of wire and a couple of ladders - nothing remotely difficult, though. There are additional extensive and interesting ruins en-route.
North Ridgeline
VF Nord Descent
VF Nord Descent
Another, longer series of wire leads downward. The terrain is quite mild, however, and in most places, one wonders why they even bothered to install ferrata wire. It is mostly just a steep hike.
Extensive Ruined Installation
Red splotch markings
Wire almost unnecessary
Lower Ridge
Lower Wires
Notch to Castelliere
As mentioned at the start, this description is for a long loop hike starting and ending at Rifugio Berti. In order to continue along that loop route, you must turn right (east) at about the 2400-metre level, where there is a small notch in the ridgeline with some red blotches and a painted sign (on the rock) for Burgstall / Castelliere. Turn right, go through the notch and descend downward on more via ferrata.
Ferrata-protected slope
Trail 15
Flanking the Croda
After the ferrata wires end, a short bit of path leads down to a junction with trail 15 - a major route on the eastern side of these mountains. Turn right again and follow trail 15 as it traverses along and below the steep cliffs of the Croda. There are a number of intersections, but in general stay straight and skirt the base of the cliffs.

Eventually you will clear the eastern end of the long wall of peaks, and the trail will curve around to the south. On the cliffs immediately above you, you'll notice a series of openings and concrete emplacements in the rock. These emplacements are part of a long series of WWII fortifications that was called the "Alpine Wall" (or Vallo Alpino in Italian), lining the land border of Italy from the Adriatic to the Ligurian Sea. This particular complex was known as the Opera Sora Colesei.
The Alpine Wall
Beyond the WWII ruins, an old military road leads southeast until a signed junction with trail 124 is reached. Take this trail to the left (signed for Rifugio Berti). This is the final leg of the long loop back to the rifugio.
124 to Rif Berti
Val Grande
End of loop in sight
Trail 124 starts off easily enough, passing through a bit of forest and then traversing along pleasantly to the southwest. Eventually, though, the trail turns up an unwelcome climb in a steep gully. Above the gully, the trail crosses over a forested bump and arrives at an old ex-rifugio (now museum). Near the old rifugio, a trail junction directs you off of trail 124 and onto a connector trail leading directly down to the rifugio Berti.
Arriving Rifugio Berti
Interactive trackmap with photo points - Ferrata Nord from Rifugio Berti - click map to view
Ferrata Nord from Rif Berti - Climb Data
Start Time: 7:52a.m.
End Time: 7:01p.m.
Duration: 11h8m
Distance: 13.69 km (8.51 mi)
Average Speed: 1.2 km/hr (0.8 mph)
Start Elevation: 6415ft (1955m) *
Max Elevation: 9632ft (2936m) *
Min Elevation: 6267ft (1910m) *
End Elevation: 6450ft (1966m) *
* : +/- 75 feet
Total Elevation Gain: 4658ft (1420m) *
Total Elevation Loss: 4613ft (1406m) *
* : +/- 75 feet
Elevation Graph

Quick Reference Ferrate Route Index

(*) Difficulty rating from the newer Cicerone Guide by Fletcher and Smith
(**) Difficulty rating from older Cicerone Guide by Hofler/Werner
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