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Breithorn Orientale (Eastern Breithorn)
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Mountains & Rocks

Breithorn Orientale (Eastern Breithorn)

Breithorn Orientale (Eastern Breithorn)

Page Type: Mountain/Rock

Location: Aosta/Vallese, Italy/Switzerland, Europe

Lat/Lon: 45.93665°N / 7.76991°E

Object Title: Breithorn Orientale (Eastern Breithorn)

County: Aosta Valley, Vallese

Activities: Mountaineering, Trad Climbing, Ice Climbing

Season: Summer

Elevation: 13586 ft / 4141 m


Page By: Silvia Mazzani

Created/Edited: Aug 1, 2012 / Feb 19, 2015

Object ID: 803658

Hits: 3460 

Page Score: 88.6%  - 27 Votes 

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Breithorn Orientale (Eastern Breithorn)

As the other two summits of Breithorn subgroup – Breithorn Occidentale and Breithorn Centrale, much more frequented because of their closeness to Testa Grigia and Little Matterhorn upper cable-car stations – the lonely third summit of Breithorn Orientale or Eastern Breithorn is situated on the Breithorn-Roccia Nera ridge, developing itself along the Italy-Switzerland boundary for about 3 km. in length. As Western and Central Breithorn, this third summit shows a brief South side, connected with the great Verra Glacier, and on the contrary a majestic and severe North side.
This fine and slender peak lies in the middle of the ridge; it’s separated by an unnamed iced saddle at 4055 m. from Punta 4106, or Eastern Breithorn Twin, on the right and by a deep notch named Finestra del Breithorn (Breithorn Window) m. 4014 from Breithorn Centrale on the left.

Breithorn Orientale South-East ridge
Breithorn Orientale South-East ridge

Eastern Breithorn normal route can be climbed directly from Testa Grigia or alternatively, for a better acclimatisation, spending one night at Rossi-Volante Bivouac m. 3750, situated nearby Schwarztor (Porta Nera or Black Door) m. 3734, a snow saddle connecting the great Verra Glacier on the South side with the Schwarzegletscher on the North side. A sharp and very long ridge starts from the summit towards North; on this mighty ridge runs the magnificent and challenging Young ridge, one of the best classic routes of Monte Rosa massif.

Getting There

View from Breithorn Plateau
View from Breithorn Plateau

The best starting point are Breuil-Cervinia (Valtournenche Valley, Italian side) or Zermatt (Swiss side).

GETTING TO BREUIL-CERVINIA. Breuil-Cervinia is situated at the end of Valtournenche Valley.

- From Turin and Milan: follow the A5 Motorway and exit at Chatillon (Aosta East). Follow the road 406 rising along the Valtournenche Valley, reaching Antey Saint André, Valtournenche and finally Breuil-Cervinia m. 2006 (27 km. from Chatillon). A cable-car station is situated downtown and reaches Plan Maison m. 2548 and Testa Grigia m. 3480 on Plateau Rosà.
- From France: you can reach Aosta through Mont Blanc Tunnel or Little St. Bernard Pass.
- From Switzerland: you can reach Aosta through the Great St.Bernard Tunnel or the Great St.Bernard Col.


Zermatt is situated at the end of Mattertal in Swiss side. Cars are not allowed in the town. Motorists can drive as far as Täsch, from where trains (shuttle trains run every 20 minutes) and minibus taxi operate a shuttle service to Zermatt. Little Matterhorn Cable-car transports climbers to the upper station at 3820 m. (no overnight stay possibility).

View from Breithorn Plateau
Monte Rosa group seen from the summit of Alphubel (Mischabel group); the three summits of Breithorn on the right

Normal Route

South side and West Ridge Alpine F+, 40°

First on the summit: J. Stafford-Anderson with Ulrich Almer and Aloys Pollinger (August 16th 1884)

A party on Breithorn Plateau
A party on Breithorn Plateau
Breithorn map

Routes overview

Breithorn E-W traverse
The summit of Eastern Breithorn seen from SE ridge

- South side and West Ridge (Normal Route) J. Stafford-Anderson with Ulrich Almer and Aloys Pollinger (Aug.16th 1884) F+

- South-East Ridge PD

- South side Alfredo Corti with Giuseppe Pirovano (Apr.24th 1949) PD+

- N Wall C.S. Ascherson and H.J. Motherstill with Ulrich Almer, Chr. Jossi and Christian Kaufmann (July 17th, 1897) D

- N Ridge or Klein Triftjigrat or Young Ridge R.Y. Mayor, C.D. Robertson, Geoffrey Wintrop Young with Josef Knubel and Moritz Ruppen (Aug.18th, 1906) D, 1000 m.. from 9 to 10 hours from Gandegghutte

- NE Couloir Leo Graf, Klaus Kubiena and Erich Vanis (July 21th 1954) D+, UIAA IV, from 40° to 60°, a step at 70°

- NE Couloir Low var. Enrico Cavalieri C.A.A.I. (Italian Academic Alpin Club), Andrea Mellano C.A.A.I., Romano Perego C.A.A.I. (July 29th 1960) D+

- NE Spur Enrico Cavalieri C.A.A.I. and Piero Villaggio C.A.A.I. (July 31th 1961) TD-, 650 m.

- ENE face Goulotte “La Ragnatela di Spaldera” Gian Carlo Grassi C.A.A.I. and A.G.A.I. and Jean-Noel Roche - March 6th 1981

Red Tape

No particulary restrictions.

Huts and Bivouacs

Sunset on Pollux and Castor from Rossi-Volante Bivouac
Pollux (on the left) and Castor (on the right) from Rossi-Volante Bivouac

- GUIDE DEL CERVINO HUT m. 3480 (Testa Grigia) – Breuil-Cervinia upper Cable car station


This eagles' nest is dedicated to Giorgio Rossi and Cesare Volante, members of CAI TORINO 1963 expedition to Langtang Lirung (Nepal) - 2,30 hours from Testa Grigia through Breithorn Col and Verra Glacier - Always open

- GANDEGG HÜTTE m. 3029 - ore 0,20 from Zermatt (Cable Car)


- Camping Glair, Valtournenche AO, Italy

- Camping Monte Cervino, Antey St. Andrè




Guidebooks and Maps


-“Monte Rosa” by Gino Buscaini (Club Alpino Accademico Italiano) – Collana Guide dei Monti d'Italia CAI-TCI (Club Alpino Italiano-Touring Club Italiano)

-“The 4000 of the Alps” by Richard Goedeke (CAAI) – All the normal routes to the 4000m. summits of the Alps – Libris Edition

-“Tutti i 4000” – L’aria sottile dell’alta quota” – CLUB 4000 CAI TORINO – Vivalda Editori

-“Le Alpi Pennine, le 100 più belle ascensioni fra il Gran San Bernardo e il Sempione” by Michel Vaucher - Zanichelli Editore“

-“I Quattromila delle Alpi” by Karl Blodig and Helmut Dumler – Zanichelli Editore

-“100 scalate su ghiaccio e misto” by Walter Pause – Gorlich Editore


-"Breuil/Cervinia-Zermatt" Kompass map 1:50.000.
"Cervino-Matterhorn e Monte Rosa" n. 5 - Istituto Geografico Centrale map 1:50.000