Morning snack break, Cimerlo
After our snack break, it was time to start the (quite steep) descent down to the forested slopes south of Cimerlo, and, ultimately, our car. We had a good 1200m (3800 feet) to descend.
A steep but grassy slope presented itself to us as we left the shoulder of Cimerlo. It was immediately clear that we were on the right track (#747), for a clear footpath led down through the turf. We descended towards and then through a thin layer of puffy clouds, below which we got our first good view of the more gentle forested slopes, far far below. The view down made it clearly apparent that there was significant steep terrain below us, because the meadows and forest below looked flat from our perspective. However, based on our hike up yesterday, we knew that terrain wasn't flat at all, which meant the intervening ground between us and the meadows was much steeper.
Nearing ferrata continuation
Fifteen minutes of down-hiking the steep grassy slopes brought us to the top of an area of big walls and jagged towers. No further walking progress was possible in the downward direction. Fortunately, our path had brought us to the start of the southern part of the via ferrata Dino Buzzati, and well-anchored and new-looking wires led down over the bare rock.
Southern part of VF Dino Buzzati
Clipping in, we began our downclimb. The first section turned out to be the steepest and airiest bit - a long stretch of vertical and mostly featureless rock, well-protected with new wire, new "bumper stops", and many stemples. Such was the level of aid that the technical level of climbing was quite low. The only thing that made it a bit strenous was the fairly vertical angle of it (Note: this stretch of new ferrata bypasses around an old section of VF Dino Buzzati that used to go through a very narrow chimney. That section is apparently decommissioned now).
Modern VF Shock Absorbers
VF Dino Buzzati Southern Section
Below the long vertical bit, the Via Ferrata Dino Buzzati / 747 continued traversing downward across a high, desolate gully of dolomite bedrock. Eventually the route led down to a big fan of scree that filled in the bottom of the gully, and the route became half-trail, half-ferrata (as necessary).
Southern cliffs of Cimerlo
Descending last bit of VF
Southern Start, VF Dino Buzzati
We continued down on the now-intermittently protected Via Ferrata Dino Buzzati / 747. At about the 2200m (7200') level, the wires ended, and we stopped to pack away our climbing gear. Trail 747 continued downward, winding scenically around some huge rocky teeth we had seen from above. Trees started to crop up here and there, clinging to favourable spots on the steep slopes.
Trail 747 continued to become more trail-like as we descended. Soon the rough and scree sections gave way to earthy path, and then we descended into full forest, where a pleasant (if steep) little track led us down to one of the major cross-connector trails running around the southern flanks of Cimerlo.
We were all pretty happy with the way Roland's ankle was performing on this - a fairly challenging mix of climbing and steep terrain walking. The amount of "wince" moments appeared to be on wane, and our hiking speeds were now all roughly the same. We were feeling more confident that we'd be able to tackle whatever climbing objectives we had planned for the remainder of the trip.
Arriving at bottom end of 747
A flat and wide connector trail soon brought us to the old farm roads we had used on the climb upwards the day before. After walking down past the beautiful alpine pastures and farm houses of Fosne Meadows, we turned onto the final little bit of paved farm road that led to where we had parked our car. Immediately what came to mind was the state of our vehicle... due to the nature of the parking signs, would we find a ticket on the car? Or, more troublingly, would we find the car there at all?
It was with a bit of relief that we spied our white Tiguan on the side of the road a few minutes later. No ticket, and everything seemed in order. Perhaps our theory about it being the quiet shoulder season was the reason. In any event, we were happy to have things go as planned. After a few tens of minutes of gear reorganization, we began the drive towards our next destination.
Interactive trackmap with photo points - Return via Ferrata Buzzati - click map to view
Hike Data - Return via Ferrata Buzzati
* : +/- 75 feet
Total Elevation Gain:
Total Elevation Loss:
* : +/- 75 feet