The Aided path of the Medal is the normal ascent route to the Corno del Medale, a rocky bastion that rises north of Lecco. The path does not present particular technical difficulties even if it is steep and at times slippery, so it should not be underestimated. It can be easily combined with other routes in the area, both as a climb and a descent path.
The starting point of the itinerary is the village of Rancio Alto above the city of Lecco. From Lecco take the road that leads us towards Ballabio up to an evident double hairpin bend in the middle of the houses. Near the second hairpin bend, we will notice that on the left a road continues straight and we take it (via Quarto). We continue about 200 meters until we see a paved road on the right near a clearing that rises steeply with a rusty white bar open. We take this steep climb. We will make a first hairpin bend to the left and we will reach a crossroads where we continue to the right uphill. We continue a couple of minutes until we reach a bar where we park.
Directions for Google Maps available here.
From the parking lot, follow the paved road that goes up through the woods past the last houses. Turn at a hairpin bend and continue uphill to the former Medale hut. From there turn left following the signs for the Corno del Medale uphill. Climb up the wood steeply on a sometimes earthy ground, sometimes gravel to reach the first section aided with a chain (40 'from the parking lot).
The first aided stretch is a sloping grassy ledge that leads us into a not difficult rocky gully where the cable runs sideways to the ascent path. We continue steeply uphill on the path between several hairpin bends. In a couple of these we meet chains that support us - especially if downhill and on wet ground. Continue steeply uphill on the northern side of the Medale towards the last tear, which is particularly steep and slippery until it reaches a saddle: on the right towards Coltiglione and San Martino, on the left towards Corno del Medale. We continue to the left and in less than 5 minutes we bypass a spur and go up the last meters to the showy summit cross (1h from the first chain - 1h 40 'total).
If the itinerary that you wanted to follow is the only aided path of the Medale, you will return backwards by the forward path (1h 15 'from the summit - about 3h total).
There are many interesting alternatives that depart from the saddle where the path, turning left, took us to the summit of the Corno Medale:
The Aided path of the Medal does not present particular difficulties except for the bottom of the second half of the path, generally steep and quite slippery. It must be emphasized that the exposed stretches are aided, however it is advisable not to climb after heavy rains.
For the more experienced Ferratists, the Aided Medal Path is the natural return after the most demanding Ferrata of the Alpini Group to the Corno del Medale.
Approach: 0:30 h
Ferrata: 1:00 h
Itinerary: 3:00 h
Via Ferrata gap: 115 m
Route difference: 632 m
Max altitude: 1028 m
Length: 6 Km