The Ferrata Guerino Rossi is a via ferrata inserted in a demanding ascent to the Strino Pizzo in the Alpi Orobie. The via ferrata is to be considered as part of a mountaineering route with a wild character in a very beautiful and panoramic environment. The climb does not have technically difficult stretches however it is exposed for long stretches and the bottom is often unstable. Absolutely to be avoided in case of unstable weather and we recommend staying overnight at the Barbellino Hut to break the long itinerary.
The starting point of the itinerary is the village of Grumetti in the municipality of Valbondione in the province of Bergamo in the upper Val Seriana. Once in Valbondione, continue straight until Grumetti where we will park in the open space at the end of the road from where our approach path will start.
Directions for Google Maps available here.
From the car park we go up the path towards the artificial Barbellino lake with path 332. At the lake we will meet the Curò hostel (about 2h 15 'from the parking lot) on the edge of the lake. We continue along the path that runs along the south shore of the lake and then follow the path 308/324 which continues up to the Rifugio Barbellino (3h 30 'from the parking lot) placed near a beautiful natural lake in the middle of a very beautiful mountain basin in which we will notice in the south-east direction Pizzo Strinato, destination of our itinerary.
From Rifugio Barbellino we will follow the signs to the right along the path that from the hut will lead to the start of the Ferrata Guerino Rossi. You will have to go up a moraine following some red trail markers and keep out south east. We will reach a boulder with "Pizzo Strinato" where we continue further. We will reach a crossroads where the normal proceeds straight ahead while we turn to the left following the white-red signs up to the start of the ferrata indicated with a white slab (1h from the hut - 4h 15 'from the parking lot).
Given the length of the approach and the environment in which the via ferrata extends, it is advisable to arrive at the hut the day before and spend the night there before embarking on the climb with many hours of light available.
The Ferrata Guerino Rossi can be divided into two distinct sections: the first extends on the north wall and the second rises on the exposed north-east edge. The via ferrata is part of an itinerary with a strong mountaineering character and, in addition to the technical difficulties of the via ferrata (moderately difficult), requires the walker to stop steadily, the ability to tackle unaided steps of I and II and physical preparation.
The first section begins with a long wall of leaning rocks in which it is possible to climb, paying attention to the sometimes unstable rock. This first part is composed of walls lying down, rocks, diagonal sections and rocky leaps. The ascent line is logical and vertical so you gain exposure quickly. After the first wall it will bend to the right and climb diagonally for about fifty meters on rocks. We now come to a stretch where the chain is often covered by accumulated snow. In this case you have to go up a gully for about twenty meters until you reach the upper wall where a few meters to the left we can resume the chain. We are now near the most technically demanding section of the via ferrata. We face a dihedral with the chain on the left side where we will be able to go up the first sections in split. In the upper part the dihedral of the opening and the ascent takes on more the characteristic of a vertical wall. Leaving the wall we find ourselves near a not very steep edge that we go up again. We continue on this edge which soon becomes a wall supported by rock and grass with which we reach the second section of the via ferrata.
The second section is easily identifiable in two ways. The chain becomes a canapone and we leave the shady north wall to reach an edge (north-east) in the sun. From this point it will be clear the path we will follow and the exposure to which we will be subject. We start by going up the sharp edge in a strong exposure alternating easy stretches with stretches of medium difficulty. It must be taken into account that the rope has faraway anchors and is naturally less tight and stable than a wire rope. At a certain point the wall rises more steeply in view of a rocky pulpit which we then have to partially descend. Here begins the last part of the very exposed ferrata which consists in going up some rocky jumps up to where the canapone ends a few meters under a cross. We go up the last exposed meters and we are at the cross (1h 30 'from the start - 5h 45' total).
Now begins a second part of the adrenaline, exposed and demanding itinerary. We continue on the thin ridge in the direction of the highest point of Pizzo Strinato (20 'from the cross - 6h total) following some white-red signs and omit them. The ridge is very aerial and some unprotected passages I and II must be made.
The descent begins by starting from the south-west ridge. Go down often keeping the right side of the ridge on unstable rock with some I-grade climbing passages. Continue downhill paying particular attention to a few short sections of climbing and some exposed and unstable traverses until you reach Forcella del Lago. At the saddle you will descend to the right towards the hut. The descent is long and you must follow the red signs that will tend to bring us under the wall of the Pizzo Strinato. The descent is quite tiring and will lead us to the Barbellino Hut (1h 30 'from the summit - 7h 30' total). From the shelter to the parking for the path traveled to the outward journey (2h 30 'from the hut - 10h total).
The ferrata extends in the first section along the north wall and for this reason it has some snow-covered points until late in the season and therefore it may make sense to have sense to bring crampons and ice ax with you. Furthermore, due to the type of itinerary it is definitely advisable to proceed in days of stable weather, possibly without clouds, due to the austere and wild environment in which the ascent extends.
The rock is of sandstone and solid slab. In some parts of the first section it is not very stable and it is necessary to pay a lot of attention especially taking into account that the chain bolts - generally quite loose - are positioned far apart and a fall is absolutely to be avoided.
The last note is on the descent. The descent is exposed and long. In particular the first half hour requires - probably - greater concentration of the climb in particular due to the instability of the bottom.
By staying in the area of the Lake Barbellino, it is possibile to undertake the Ferrata del Pizzo Recastello, obviously by staying overnight in one of the moutain hut of the area.
The Guerino Rossi Ferrata with Pizzo Strinato is a long, demanding and rewarding itinerary that cannot be combined with other day trips. You could opt to stay in the high valleys of Bergamo to travel the Ferrata Pizzo del Becco or the Ferrata to the Passo della Porta, both medium difficulty high mountain via ferratas. If you want to go down to the city you could meet the Ferrata Maurzio, the Ferrata to the Madonnina del Coren or in the direction of Lecco la Ferrata to the Monte Ocone.