Busa Alta from Refavaie

Refavaie - Passo Sàdole - Rifugio Monte Cauriòl - Cima di Busa Alta - Forcella Coldosè

Lagorai,Upper Vanoi

aaron • 20/06/2020


10:00 hrs
26.1 km
A little
Min. elevation
1110 m
Max. elevation
2513 m
Elevation gain
2450 m
Elevation loss
2450 m
Car park
View on Gmaps
  • 65%
  • 20%
  • 15%
  •  Forest
  •  Grass
  •  Rock
  • Jan
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This challenging loop covers the central stretch of the Translagorai, a trekking route that crosses the entire porphyry chain of Lagorai, in an environment of natural beauty and historical charm.

The route starts from the hut of Rifugio Refavaie (1,110 m asl), in the Valley of Vanoi, located along the road, 5 km after the village of Caoria. The first section of the itinerary progressively climbs into the forest, towards the W, along the Signpost No. 320 (which starts about 200 m after the hut, after the first hairpin bend of the road to the hut of Malga Fossernica di Dentro), in the direction of Malga Laghetti. Throughout the ascent, the clearings present allow you to enjoy the first glimpses of the peak of Cima d’Asta and the gap of Passo Cinque Croci. Once by the hut of Malga Laghetti (1,582 m asl), the route continues on a stretch on a gravel road, then climbs again into the forest reaching the basin named Busa di Sàdole (1.915 m slm), located right under the gap of Passo Sàdole. After a last uphill stretch, you reach the wide gap of Passo Sàdole (2,066 m asl), located on the W side of the peak of Monte Cauriòl, known above all for the events related to the First World War, when it was conquered by the Italian Alpini in 1916.

From the crossroads of Passo Sàdole, the route continues following the one of Translagorai, on a downhill stretch along the Signpost No. 320 through the valley of Sàdole towards Rifugio Baita Monte Cauriòl / Agritur Malga Sàdole, leaving the peaks of Cauriòl and Cardinàl behind. During the descent, it is possible to observe the basin of Pian di Maserón, crossed by the military road of the Great War, called “Via Austriaca” (tr. Austrian route), which led directly to the top of Monte Cauriòl. After a series of hairpin bends, the Signpost No. 320 begins to follow the course of the stream called Rivo Sàdole, passing through the hut of Bàito del Marino and leading to the basin of Pian delle Maddalene, where the path widens, becoming a gravel road.

Right at Pian delle Maddalene, a small cross – Crós de la Cauriòta – recalls the dramatic story of Anastasia Sperandio, a young woman from Caoria who was stuck here due to a snowstorm and lost her life in the autumn of 1927.

From Pian delle Maddalene, the route descends until it reaches the two buildings of the Rifugio Baita Monte Cauriòl and the Agritur Malga Sàdole, a classic overnight stay of the Translagorai route, where it takes the Signpost No. 349 at the E of the pasture and starts climbing towards Forcella Coldosè / Cima Busa Alta. The path climbs into the forest until it reaches an altitude of approximately 1,890 meters, where it crosses a track that leads to the peak Cima Busa Alta.

At the crossroads, the proposed route, which would continue in its “base loop” to Forcella Coldosé, presents a strongly recommended detour to the peak of Cima di Busa Alta (by the way, Busa Alta Tedesca – tr. German – or Keiserspitze). The ascent to the top is very steep, covering 600 meters in altitude in just over 2 km, but both the sight offered by the Busa Alta peak (2,513 m asl) and the historical relevance of the place, showing Austro- Hungarians entrenchments and stairways in excellent condition, fully repay the effort needed. The ascent to the Busa Alta proceeds on the well-marked path, keeping to the right at the only crossroads which is halfway up – on the left you go up to Canzenàgol (2,457 m asl) – offering a long series of hairpin bends that wind through the basin of Conca della Busa Alta. The path becomes steeper, and with it also the signs of the Great War remains, between walls and artificial steps, with the positions of the third Feldjäger battalion of the Bosnians and the Austrian Landesschützen. The last stretch of the climb is extremely spectacular, with a real staircase leading to the summit, supported in the most inaccessible sections also by old iron ropes and artificial parapets between the trenches. The summit area, with the characteristic cross on the top, is full of trenches, caves and war relics, indelible signs of the Great War. As a note, it is perhaps appropriate to say that the Busa Alta is made up of two peaks (between which there is the “busa” – tr. depression -): the main one, “Busa Alta Tedesca” (tr. German Busa Alta) or Kaiserspitze ( 2,456 m asl), and the second one of the “Busa Alta Taliana” (tr. Italian Busa Alta), which were involved in the fights during the autumn of 1916.From the start of the path for the summit of Busa Alta, the route resumes, always following that of the Translagorai, towards the gap of Forcella Coldosé, which can be reached after crossing the one of Forcella Canzenàgol (2,220 m asl) and some beautiful passages at high altitude near the Cadinón. From Forcella Coldosé (2,183 m asl), just before reaching the bivouac (Bivacco Forcella Coldosè), you can also enjoy a beautiful view of the lake named Lago delle Trute (aka Lago delle Trote – tr. lake of the trouts). The very long return, which from the bivouac of Forcella Coldosé leads to Rifugio Refavaie, follows the Signpost No. 339 (then Signpost No. 335 from the crossroads of Val Fossernica – 1,459 m asl) for about eight kilometers, initially on a path that later joins the gravel road (Strada Forestale Coldosé), passing by the hut of Malga Coldosé di Sotto, before the last downhill stretch leading directly to the location of Refavaie.


  • From the hut of Rifugio Refavaie (1,110 m asl), proceed along theSignpost No. 320, passing by the hut of Malga Laghetti (1,582 m asl) and the basin called Busa di Sàdole, until reaching the gap of Passo Sàdole [2h 30],
  • From Passo Sàdole (2.066 m asl), descend along the Signpost No. 320 “Via Austriaca” (tr. Austrian route) towards Rifugio Baita Monte Cauriòl / Agritur Malga Sàdole, passing through the basin of Pian delle Maddalene [3h 30],
  • From the hut of Rifugio Baita Monte Cauriòl (1,600 m asl), take the Signpost No. 349 in the pasture to the E and start climbing towards Forcella Coldosè / Cima Busa Alta [4h 30],
  • [VARIANT] Climb to the peak of Cima Busa Alta / Keiserspitze (2,513 m asl) [6h 30],
  • Continue along the Signpost No. 349 towards Forcella Coldosè, passing by the mountain gap of Forcella Canzenàgol (2,220 m asl) [8h 30],
  • From the gap of Forcella Coldosè (2,183 m asl), descend along the Signpost No. 339, in the beginning on a path, then gravel road of the Signpost No. 335, until getting back to the location of Refavaie [10h 00]. ✓


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