Porto Vescovo & Lake Fedaia from Pordoi Pass
Country - Italy
Region - Dolomites - Val de Fassa
Author - Dolomites Inn, Penia near Canazei
Time - 5.00 hours
This walk at the summit area of the Pordoe Pass which can be reached from Canazei by car or bus. Note bus services are limited so do check the times before you leave Canazei so you avoid any long waits at the Pass. The drive or ride to the top of the Pordoi Pass is stunning with a height gain from Canazei of nearly 800 metres (2500 feet) which achieved through 27 hairpins bends!
Take footpath 601 which is located behind the Hotel Savoia. This path soon starts climbing passing a small chapel on the left with rapidly improving views down the valley east to Arabba. Follow the signs for the mountain hut Fredarola which is reached after 30 to 40 minutes depending on how fast you complete the initial ascent. From Fredarola you have your first views across the valley to the Marmolada Massif with Lake Fedaia already in view at the foot of this mountain.
Leaving the Rigugio de Pan continue on the main path which clings to the side of the mountain on the next section. Despite the drop to your right, the path is not difficult and provided you take care you should meet with no problems. The path rises to the Col de Paussa from where there are excellent views down to Arabba. After leaving the Col the path crosses a shoulder and reaches a clear junction. Path 601 continues ahead but you must bear left for Porta Vescovo
At the col you will find the Rifugio Porto Vescovo (roughly 2 hours from the start). On this part of the walk towards the end of June and early July it is possible to see the beautiful blue flower,' King of the Alps' (quite rare) growing on the black volcanic rock. Also many other flowers such as the sulphur anemone can be seen on this section. From the Refuge (located at the top of the Arabba to Porto Vescovo cable car) take a look at the splendid views on the north side of the ridge towards the Piz Boe and Tofane towards Cortina with the Marmolada glacier on the opposite side of Lake Fedaia.
If you arrived at the Pordoi Pass by car then retrace your steps back to the Pass. However if you took the bus from Canzei to the Pass then you can continue by descending over 400 metres taking path 698 down to Lake Fedaia (2053 m). During the descent you are constantly reminded of the Marmolada glacier which lies directly across the valley.
Reaching the road you can take the bus to Canazei. Check departure times before starting the walk. There is a regular service but also some parts of the day where a two hour interval between buses needs to be taken into account. Note there are places to eat near the bus stop. As an alternative you can walk down the valley to Penia on path 605. This takes around 90 minutes passing the Rifugio Viletta Maria on the way to the typical Alpine village of Penia. From here you can continue to walk to Canazei or take advantage of the more frequent bus service.
- Val di Fassa e Dolomiti Fassane - 1:25000 scale - sheet 06 published by Tabacco
French IGN mapping is available in digital format by area and 'cut your own' maps. For more information and availabilty go to the Anquet website.
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