Via Ferrata Ettore Castiglioni, Brenta Dolomites
A great classic of the Brenta Dolomites, this via ferrata runs along well-equipped vertical cliff faces from Rifugio Agostini to Rifugio XII Apostoli and features some amazing views of Val d’Ambiez.
The Ferrata was opened in the 1946 by some friends of the great Italian mountaineer Ettore Castiglioni. This via ferrata follows the route he first climbed in 1942, but enables you to follow in his footsteps without the difficulty of actual rock climbing. Running beneath Bocchetta dei Due Denti, the trail climbs vertically for 200 meters (655 ft) up the face of Cima Susat, where the views over Val d'Ambiez are stunning. Although vertical, exposed and challenging enough on its own, it is not to be underestimated especially if done together with Sentiero dell'Ideale (in one of the most traditional of the Brenta circuits). It is a complex mountaineering itinerary that requires experience and good physical fitness.
The via ferrata itself takes about 2-3 hours, but you will need to take account of the return trip to and from the start point (another 4-6 hours), which needs to be planned out properly. Access to Val d’Ambiez and Rifugio Cacciatore is regulated (limited parking and jeep service on request), as is the option of climbing to Malga Bandalors if starting out from Rifugio XII Apostoli.