CIRCULAR HIKE: OMBRETTA AND VERNALE MOUNTAINS
We suggest that this long and demanding hike be divided into two stages with overnight stay at the Falier refuge. In this manner it is possible to climb up to the Ombretta eastern summit at 3,009 m, that rises at the centre of an extraordinary circular panorama. From Alba (Dèlba) 1,517 m the route climbs up to the Contrin refuge at 2,016 m (path no. 602) (2 hours). Behind the refuge, turn right onto trail no. 607. After passing a stream, the route travels the long diagonal that reaches the top of the rocky bank of the Lastè de Contrin and leads to a plateau. Here go left (to the right starts trail no. 609 for Pas Pasché) up the slopes of glacier-rounded rocks that divide two small gorges. Continue walking along the ridge of the scree beds that line the base of majestic cliffs. Keep to the right along the bottom of the gorge until you reach a big rock plate. At this point abandon trail no. 607 and take left onto trail no. 612. After a flat section, go up two sharp bends leading through the scree beds coming down from the Vernale and then onto the long diagonal that ends at Passo Ombrettola (Pas de Ombretòla at 2,861 m) (3 hrs; total: 5 hrs). If you resist the short-cuts and keep to the path, the descent through the scree beds on the opposite slope shouldn’t be a problem. After this it is easy to walk through the meadows further down and then zig-zag through the low alder wood to reach a flat section that leads to the Falier refuge at 2,074 m (1 hour 15; 6 hrs 15). You can spend the nigth here (compulsory reservation). Close to the refuge there is trail no. 610 that leads to Ombretta Pass at 2,706 m. The narrow bends at the beginning then widen out into the easily travelled war pathway, followed by a demanding final section through the debris near the summit (2 hrs; 8 hrs 15). To reach the Ombretta summit, go left along a path of black lavic rock, passing by the “Del Bianco” bivouac, and then climb up on the partially equipped ridge (Via Ferrata d’Ombretta - Vernale). Walk through into a detrital gorge and climb up the rather difficult slope to the crest. Follow the crest to the left until you reach the iron cross erected on the peak (1 hr 45 to go and return to be added to the hours indicated for the second half of the tour). From there, descend into Val Rosalìa on the easy trail that runs along the right slope of the gorge. With a tight serpentine, overcome a steep slope that eventually levels out and cross lovely flower-strewn meadows to the Contrin refuge at 2,016 m (1 hr; 9 hrs 15) and from there down to Alba at 1,517 m (1 hr 15;10 hrs 30).
Shuttle bus service from Baita Locia Contrin Refuge to Alba di Canazei.