The new via ferrata del Trafoi is a modern and easy via ferrata. A spur of rock rises, located on the edge of the stream that cuts through the valley descending from the Stelvio Pass towards the Val Venosta. A short and suitable itinerary, for a short cut of time or to be included in a longer itinerary on the slopes of the west side of the Ortles.
The starting point of the itinerary is the car park located on the roadside in the village of Trafoi (Bolzano) along the Stelvio state road.
Directions for Google Maps available here.
Parked the car we will have to cross the stream that runs down to the side of the road. Already from the village it is clearly visible on the opposite side of the stream the rocky wall where the short via ferrata rises. There are two similar options for descending towards the stream bed: one near the bend and about 200 meters towards the town. Regardless of the options we lose about 70 m of altitude reaching the creek and towards the valley we meet a wooden bridge with which the cross. We follow the clear indications and we are at the start of the via ferrata (15 'from the parking lot).
Visible along the via ferrata is a platform for a tirolienne that crosses the stream and returns to the village. At the time of our visit we have no information on the conditions of use.
The first section of the route is easy, suitable for neophytes and also for families with the necessary safety measures (here is an in-depth analysis for the equipment for via ferratas dedicated to children). We climb diagonally to the right up inclined ramps where the only possible pitfall is the sometimes dirty bottom. We climb well-grabbed rocks and we are a short section of connection. Let's get back to the aiding equipment and, after a slightly more difficult cross-over, we are at a crossroads
On the left you can take the easy variant of the route. This continues on levels of difficulty similar to those just followed. Continue on a ramp to the left and then for some nice stepped and equipped leap you gain altitude and a little bit of pleasant exposure. We reach a passage just more vertical and challenging but not difficult. After a few meters diagonally we are at the platform where the via ferrata ends (30 'from the attack).
Moderately difficult variant:
If we continue along the equipped ledge at the crossroads, we soon reach a next fork: on the right on the ledge we can reach a cave. The via ferrata instead continues vertical with a series of pegs and equipment that make the climb less difficult than expected. Go up about twenty vertical meters and then climb some rocks. We climb another more challenging rocky jump and therefore we are, after an easy traverse to the right, to the platform where the via ferrata ends.
The return is via an easy path that goes down to the stream to the left of the platform, then back to the parking lot (about 1h total).
Trafoi's ferrata is recent (2019), excellently equipped and overall simple. It is a road inserted in a beautiful Alpine valley, with beautiful views of the Ortler group and the Alps on the border between Austra and Italy. Ferrata suitable for families and beginners.
The via ferrata is short and, in just over an hour, the tour is completed. For those wishing to stay in this beautiful area, the natural and demanding continuation of the route is to reach the Payer Hut (3000 m). To reach it you will have to go up about 1500 meters in altitude so you need time and training. The climb initially follows the path 3, then in steep and evident ascent on the western wall of the Ortles the path 19 which leads first to the Passo della Tabaretta then to the Rifugio Payer (point of arrival of the far more demanding Ferrata della Tabaretta). For this tour, consider a whole day and pay attention to the weather conditions and your preparation.
From Trafoi we can go either to the Stelvio or to the Val Venosta.
If you drive to the Stelvio the other Via ferrata options are those present in the province of Sondrio, among which we point out the Ferrata to the Torrione Porro and the Ferrata the Heart of the Cross at the Palabione.
Val Venosta is an area rich in other climbing routes. In addition to the aforementioned Tabaretta that is undertaken by Solda, we can cover the Via Ferrata to the Croda of Cengles, the Via Ferrata Hoachwool and Knott in Naturns, the Ferrata del Murmele in Val Martello, the Heini Holzer via ferrata in Merano and the Ferrata Ziel.