The Ferrata of the Orrido of Foresto is a beautifully landscaped via ferrata that winds through a magnificent natural gorge. The right one for two vertical walls is demanding with overhanging and decidedly adrenaline stretches with 3 suspension bridges, two of which are decidedly long and oscillating. Attention to the flow of the stream that literally can make life complicated both in the fords and in the two walls close to the second and third waterfall.
The starting point of the itinerary is the town of Foresto in Val di Susa, province of Turin. Once in the village, park near the church.
Directions for Google Maps available here.
From the parking lot follow the signs following the road which climbs up to the right with directions also for the historical climbing area. The road is initially aslphalted then dirt, follow inside the gorge. You pass a first time the stream, then walk uphill next to the bottom of the river then you cross it once again until you reach the beginning of the Ferrata of the Orrido of Foresto (15 'from the parking lot).
You proceed initially on a short slab which we face diagonally then with an easy traverse. You walk a connection path and then we climb a vertical wall then to the right gaining exposure on the stream in a beatiful environment. We proceed diagonally over us on the first suspended bridge. This bridge is the longest of the 3 in the via ferrata and it is also the one swinging most. The right wire is slightly too low and tend to let you go off balance in the central part.
Passed the bridge we face an easy horizontal traverse with pegs for the feet reaching shortly the second bridge suspended. This bridge is shorter and more stable. You cross it coming on the orographic right of the stream. You face now a traverse which is initially horizontal then descend slowly leading us in the most beautiful although most challenging strech of the route. We find ourselves on the side of a beatiful waterfall with the climbing route passing by the water jump. Depending on the water flow you will get wet. The wall is of about thirty meters and has some meters overhanging. The abundant brackets reduce the physical effort required, however present. The highest part of this section has two sets of brackets to further helps in this passage. Ended this part, we are into a wonderful gorge.
You face a ford where depending on the season (spring the one with most water) you will get wet. The route proceed now with another interesting section. You proceed with a traverse to the left towards the third and last suspended bridge of the route. The last part under the bridge is vertical and slightly overhanging. We cross the third suspended bridge, hence we traverse to the right next to a another waterfall in a very nice environment. The route begins now its last section requiring focus: you climb a long vertical wall much aided with brackets with which you gain altitude over the stream left beneath. We proceed on the last rocky jumps, nice to climb until the end of the difficulties. We proceed again some minutes on aided strech and reach the end of the via ferrata (2h from the beginning - 2h 15' from the parking).
The Ferrata had been closed in 2016 following a landslide that affected the via ferrata near the first bridge. In October 2017, restoration work was completed on the Via Ferrata dell'Orrido di Foresto. This unstable rock situation therefore requires maximum attention from hikers.
The Ferrata is to be avoided in periods when the flow rate of the stream is high, since at least 3 fords are needed and this could create potentially dangerous situations. It may be useful to bring along a pair of slippers for the fords and a kway for the two sections near the falls.
L'orrido di foresto è un pezzo di storia della Val di Susa, almeno di storia legata alla roccia. La via ferrata percorre un itinerario attrezzato negli anni 60 da membri del CAI. Il sentiero attrezzato era rimasto in funzione per circa 20 anni fino alla sua chiusura e parziale smantellamento a causa delle condizioni di sicurezza. In quegli anni, la falesia all'ingresso dell'orrido di foresto iniziò ad attirare l'attenzione di fortissimi arrampicatori liberi, italiani e non, che si cimentano sugli impressionanti strapiombi. Nel 2003 la via ferrata venne ricostruita la via ferrata e, nel 2010, vennero aggiunti i 3 ponti sospesi che oggi ne caratterizzano lo sviluppo. Rispetto al percorso originario, la Ferrata attuale è molto più attrezzata, rendendo più accessibile il percorso e - sotto certi aspetti - meno tecnico il percorso.
The Ferrata dell'Orrido di Foresto can be easily linked with one of the others ferrate present in the Val di Susa. Among these, the closest are the Ferrata dell'Orrido of Chianocco, the Via Ferrata Ruceia, the Ferrata Carlo Giorda, the Ferrata della Rocca Bianca towards Turin, or going further up the valley, you can do the via ferrata of Claviere (la Ferrata Rocca Clarì, the Military Ferrata, the Ferrata to the Chaberton or the Via Ferrata Batteria Bassa), the Via Ferrata of Rouas and the Ferrata Gorge of the Dora.