Spring and the first warm days have arrived, but in the high mountains, snow continues to shine and cover our peaks.

In this period, until the beginning of May, we often recommend a pleasant snowshoeing at high altitude, suitable for all thanks to undemanding climbs and above all because it enchants thanks to the spectacular panoramic view.

We are talking about the walk that from the Rifugio Albergo Ghiacciaio dei Forni leads to the Branca Refuge.

Some useful data:

  • Starting point: Rifugio Albergo Ghiacciaio dei Forni (2178 m)
  • Finish location: Rifugio Albergo Ghiacciaio dei Forni (2178 m)
  • Height difference: 300 m.
  • Recommended period: March to mid-May
  • Length of route: 3.35 km (one way) - 7 km (return)
  • Walking time: 3 hours
  • Special features: Panoramic - Naturalistic

Itinerary

From our Miramonti Park Hotel Sport & Wellness only one half an hour by car to reach the Rifugio Albergo Ghiacciaio dei Forni.

Once you have parked your car in one of the car parks nearby, take the flat track to the right to the Branca refuge (marker no. 28a).

As soon as possible, leave the path to descend slightly to the right to reach the centre of the wide, snow-covered valley floor, where you will find the posts marking the snowmobile track used to supply the Branca refuge during the winter months.

This track, keeping to the left of the Frodolfo Streamslowly ascends, approaching the gigantic rocky step that interrupts the valley.

In the vicinity of the great rocky leap (approx. 2300 m.) the route turns left and gains altitude with numerous hairpin bends in the direction of the large lateral moraine.

You will then arrive near the Rosole Pond (2,452 m), finally, with a last leftward climb you will arrive at the Cesare Branca Refuge (2493 m.).

A slice of cake or a typical dish are the right reward after the hard work faced, especially when accompanied by a splendid panorama!

For the return journey, follow the same route as the outward journey.

The Branca Refuge

This refuge deserves special mention due to its unique and spectacular location.

It is located in the heart of the Stelvio National Park di in front of the great Forni Glacier and dominated by the peaks of S. Matteo (3678 m.), Tresero (3594 m.), Vioz (3645 m.), Palòn de la Mare (3708 m.) and Cevedale (3769 m.).

It is a boundary position between Lombardy and Trentino-Alto Adige, as the Ortles-Cevedale Group borders Val Venosta in the south, includes the Passo dello Stelvio region and extends along the Val Martello in South Tyrol to Passo del Tonale in Trentino. Almost the entire mountain range is part of the Stelvio National Park. The Ortles (3,905 metres above sea level) is the highest peak of the Ortles-Cevedale Group, which, however, lies entirely on South Tyrolean territory.

The Rifugio Branca offers one of the rarest vantage points in the Alps and is the starting point for numerous ascents to all the peaks of the Forni Glacial Circle.

But it also offers endless walking possibilities suitable for all levels of physical fitness, both on glaciers (glaciological trail) and on green mountain meadows.

It is precisely in this spring period that numerous ski mountaineering or snowshoeing excursions can be undertaken from the Branca hut, sporting activities that offer great satisfaction in a unspoilt and fascinating mountain environment.

In short, there are many hikes that can be taken from Rifugio Branca, and we will certainly talk about them in another article, but in the meantime, enjoy this snowshoe hike!

On your return, we remind you, you will find our new wood-fired sauna in the outdoor gardenor the invigorating whirlpool of our outdoor swimming pool to end the day with well-deserved relaxation.

Lucio