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Monday, July 23
Descending Civetta
Morning view
We had hoped that the clouds would have melted away during the night, but come morning, they were still partially enveloping the peak. There were some beautiful glimpes of nearby mountaintops floating in cotton, but the views were still relatively sparse. It had not rained, and it didn't look like it was going to, so we were not too worried about being caught in inclement weather on our way down.
Ready to leave
After a quick breakfast and the ritual of paying the caretaker for our stay at the hut (and flashing our ever-useful ACC cards to get the big discount), we suited up, and started down. Our descent route was something called the 'via normal' (i.e. the 'normal way'). The guidebook does say there is 'every kind of scree, loose rock, unprotected downclimbing, and wired ferrata' on the way down this 'normal' route, but we figured that since it was an ungraded descent route, it couldn't be that bad. We therefore opted not to put on our ferrata gear.
Rifugio Torrani's deck
Crags to the south
Ravenna trio departs
courtesy DBoyd
courtesy PChen
This way to Via Normale
Van delle Sasse
Starting our descent
courtesy DBoyd
courtesy PChen
Steep and gloomy
Scrambling and Traversing
Downclimbing
The route did indeed head down steeply, involved scrambling, then wires, then exposed wires, then some quite exposed ferrata climbing - including one airy traverse above a completely smooth slab. Since we were already on the route, we just carefully downclimbed on the wire, but my overall recommendation would be to wear the ferrata gear on this descent. The wire is there, and the exposure in places is not trivial, and you carried the damn stuff all the way up here anyway, so why not?
Looks steep!
Definitely a ferrata!
Airy traverses
Safely arriving at the bottom of the steep stuff, we saw that the route reverts back to a basic scree path. We were also low enough and far enough away from the cloud-building bulk of Civetta have emerged into sun again, and we stripped off all of the fleeces, mitts, and hats we had on.
courtesy PChen
End of Via Normale
Jenn hikes below swoopy strata
Hiking below swoopy strata
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