Review of the challenging trip to the Agner climbing the Ferrata Stella Alpina (literally "Edelweiss Ferrata"). The proposed itinerary is very satisfying but long and reserved for experienced hikers with good experience not only of via ferrata but also of high-altitude trips. Itinerary of over 10 hours including the climb to the Agner. Attention to the continuation of the route at the end of the via ferrata.
The starting point of the itinerary is the town of Frassanè in the province of Belluno. The town is located right on the slopes of Monte Agner and can be reached from Agordo (Belluno) than from Fiera di Primiero (Trento). Once in the center of the village, take the small Via della Vittoria which climbs westwards (towards the Agner). After a few meters on the left, take via Domadore, follow it for a few hundred meters until we see the CAI signposts near a saddle: on the right, 771 rises, on the left, 772. We find parking in a clearing (4 -5 parking spaces) and we begin our trip. Directions for Google Maps available here.
Leave the car in the pitch (1182 m) and start the 771 uphill trail that will lead us to the Scarpa Hut. We initially follow the forest road that climbs intersecting the now disused chairlift. We continue in a steady but not excessive climb until the end of the forest road. We are now out of the woods and we start a go up steeply for meadows along the ski slopes until you reach the Scarpa hut (1735 m - 1h from the parking lot) located just below the arrival of the chairlift.
Now begins the second and more demanding section of the route. After the first meters of diagonal rope, the cable vertical part on a wall with not very evident grips even if present. After these first athletic meters there move to the right crossing in the direction of a chimney, the first in a series along the route. We climb initially on the left side to then proceed in split looking for grips on the opposite side of the carving as well as some pegs present. We go up the chimney and we go out on the left side.
We continue now facing the last section of the ferrata. We continue to the left with a traverse that leads us to a aerial edge overlooking the underlying Rifugio Scarpa. We go up again on a vertical wall and then take us under a delicate passage: the cable continues vertically and winds along a crack. The start of this passage is challenging and slightly overhanging. It is advisable to look for a foot support on the left side and to gain exit from the overhanging passage. Going up along the crack you need a certain amount of agility to look for grips on both sides of the crack. Once this passage of sure commitment is completed, the cable bends to the right and leads us below the key passage of the route: a vertical and smooth slab to be traced back looking for the few natural holds (crack along the slab) and the metal pegs present. We're at the end of the route. Let's go up the last exposures and move on to a new edge. We continue for the last meters of cable with which we reach "Le Laste" (2320 m - 1h 45 'from the start - 3h 30' total).
The descent from the Agner is definitely challenging and must be taken into due consideration when planning this trip. From the Agner to Forcella Pizzon you go back along the same route paying particular attention to the stretch of path between the summit and the aided ledge. Since there are no abundant signs and the few are faded, it is advisable to pay attention during the ascent to the route to be able to identify the descent path from above. We retrace the various aided sections and reach the Biasina Biasin again (2645 m - 45 'from the summit - 7h total). If you wanted to stay overnight, the shelter is in good condition.
From the shelter we start the steep descent standing on the left side of the gully, remaining initially above the gully below. The bottom is slippery and deserves a lot of attention. We go down for about 200 meters (20 '/ 30' from the shelter) with some aided sections where we meet a saddle marked with writing on rock rather faded. To the right it goes down with red signs the path along the gully, to the left it goes down with yellow signs the normal way. We describe in relation the demanding descent along the gully. There descent takes place on steep hairpin bends with gravelly bottom and sometimes unstable. It is definitely advisable to have hiking sticks with you to increase stability in some parts of the descent. The lower part of the canyon is generally covered by a snowfield. We finish the gully and see straight to us the Scarpa hut. Following the directions on a stone, we gather on the path traveled to the outward journey with the junction for the start of the Stella Alpina Ferrata on our right (1820 m - 1h 30 'from the shelter - 8h 30' total).
At this point we walk back along the entire approach path already traveled, reaching the Scarpa Hut (15 'from the junction for the start of the ferrata) and descending to the parking lot along the easy path 771 to the parking lot (1h 15' from the hut - about 10h total).
In terms of trip, the overall difficulties are perhaps among the greatest in the Italian panorama of aided routes. If on one hand the technical difficulties of the via ferrata part of the route are to be considered "Very Difficult", to these must be added the objective difficulties in the stretch of the Laste, the climb to the Agner and finally the difficult descent along Il Canalone. To these challenging stretches must be added a long approach and return. It is advisable to break the trip in two days. Absolutely to take into consideration the forecast weather conditions considering that fog and rain could be very dangerous both in the Laste and along the descent. Keep in mind that along Il Canalone there is often snow and it may be prudent to have crampons with you. Ferrata to be undertaken in a good state of training and with stable weather.
The Stella Alpina via Ferrata is a long and demanding itinerary. Alone it can comfortably spend two days. For those wishing to combine it with several itineraries, you can proceed in two directions:
Here below, you find maps, books or other items that could be useful in planning this specific itinerary:
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Stella Alpina Ferrata Weather in Frassené (Belluno).