"Why posting two mountains on one page?", would certainly be your obvious first question. Well, they are like twins, similar rounded shape, close together, in summer accesed from the same alpine meadow. And even more - they have exactly the same altitude - 2043 meters.
I was waiting long to ascend one of them - Monte Dimon. Less attractive than the high, sharp peaks of Carnic Main Crest, but ideal for skiing, they were waiting me to find abundant time of Christmnas holidays, when I was ready to drive far around by many valleys to enjoy a ski tour of only 800 meters. But it was worthwile. Very worthwile! Finally, this twin mountain was one before the last missing mountain of Carnic Alps Main Ridge - eastern part for me to climb. Now, only Monte Schinauz is still resisting...
So, if somebody wants to post a distinct page of Monte Paularo, which I hadn't climbed yet, you are welcome. I will just keep on this page the information about Monte Dimon.
OverviewMonte Paularo and Monte Dimon are the twin mountains, rising south of the main crest of Carnic Alps. So, theay are much different in nature from other mountains, which is due to the geological variety of Carnic Alps understandable. They are mostly rounded and grassy, allowing ascents from virtually all sides. As on all slopes there are pastures, many mountain roads and cart roads reach quite high altitudes. One of them ends only 100 meters below the summit of Monte Paularo. Both mountains are very nice for hiking, skiing and mountain biking. The view from their summits is opened towards the east, south and west, while on the north there are higher mountains of the main crest which are also very picturesque.
On the west Monte Paularo and Monte Dimon massif is bordered by the valley of Torrente But. South on the foothills there is the town of Paluzza, towards the north Laipacco and Timau are worth to mention. These are all trailheads for west ascents. On the south Torrente Pontaiba and Rio Minischitte are dividing the massif from Monte Tersadia. The saddle between both creeks is called Forcella di Lius. Over it a road connects Paluzza with Paularo on the east. On the Paluzza side on the valley slopes there's Ligosullo. The eastern border of the massif is Torrente Chiarso. North of the town of Paularo it soon forms a steep gorge, which divides our massif from Monte Zermula on the east. There also a mountain road goes up on Passo del Cason di Lanza and further towards the east. Above the gorge, close to Casera Ramaz a side tibutary inflows Torrente Chiarso. This is Rio Cercevesa, flowing on the NE side of our massif, thus dividing it from the main crest of Carnic Alps. Its sources are below Forcella Fontanafredda, 1876m, the saddle, on which our massif is attached to the rest of the main crest. So, Monte Paularo and Monte Dimon are a small massif, in the shape of a side ridge, coming down from the main Carnic Alps crest towards the SE, all the time keeping the altitude around 1800-2000 meters.
Coming from the NW, from Forcella Fontanafredda, there are first a few ridge elevations (1995 m, 2020 m), then soon the summit of Monte Paularo, 2043 m, comes. On it the ridge branches. A weaker side branch goes down towards the SW, to Paluzza, while the stronger branch goes in a form of a bit sharper ridge towards the east on Monte Dimon, 2043 m. The distance between the two peaks is 1.25 km. From Monte Dimon the ridge continues towards the SE. It is rounded, easilly passable, appropriate also for skiing. On the other side of a small saddle, 1950 m, the first elevation is Monte Neddis, 1990 m. This summit is very popular in winter, because tour skiers usually don't continue on Monte Dimon. From it, a broad shoulder continues down and the ridge finally reaches the valley near Paularo. On some side ridges there are other, unimportant elevations, which also have names.
Between Monte Paularo and Monte Dimon, on the S side, there is a small basin with a lake. Lago Dimon is popular hiking and biking destination in summer.
Summit ViewAs Monte Paularo and Monte Dimon are standing south of the main Carnic Alps crest, the view from them is very fine. The most attractive are of course the highest mountains on the north, especially Monte Coglians / Hohe Warte. Towards the west the view goes to the highest mountains of Dolomites and on the SW there are Dolomiti d'Oltre Piave. The view towards the south is also much opened. On the SE we are mostly attracted with the bold posture of Monte Sernio, which is close and seen from the very attractive side. Nice is also his "sister" Creta Grauzaria. On the SE and E are Julian Alps, among the high peaks the most attractive looks from here Montaž. And finally on the E and NE are the neighbouring Carnic Alps summits: Monte Zermula and Creta di Aip / Trogkofel.
Lago Dimon GeositeBecause Monte Dimon is also geologically very interesting mountain, the high Lago Dimon is arranged also as one of the geopoints of Furlania country.
Already 300 million years ago the mountain was part of a paleozoic mountain range which existed before the Alps chain - The Hercynian Chain. As part of it, the Dimon Formation is volcanic by origin, dating back to the Carboniferous era, younger red sandstones are originating from the upper Permian era. The boundary between those two geological formations is nicely seen in the change of rock colours - from dark grey to red. Later some other rock layers were deposited, until finally, some 30 million years ago, the mountaineous area rised out of the sea again - together with all other Alps. Finally, around the lake the traces of the last ice age can be seen - at the and, also the lake itself is its result. From some 18000 years ago the whole area was covered with ice, which started to retreat only some 15000 years ago. The ancient glacial valley of Monte Dimon hosted a lake which was initially three times as big than it is today.
For a broader picture of the area, see the main page of Carnic Alps. From the north, from Austria, the main road comes over Ploeckenpass / Passo di Monte Croce Carnico and comes down in the valley of Torrente But. The majority of visitors however comes from the south. Paluzza and Paularo can be reached from Tolmezzo, driving towards the north. But you are probably more interested of the information about the mountain roads.
The road, connecting Paluzza and Paularo is usually cleaned also in winter. If not entirely, almost certain till Ligosullo, so come from the west, from Paluzza. From Ligosullo, 944m, a good mountain road goes up to Albergo Castel Valdaier, 1340 m. Also that road looks usually cleaned. We came start of January, when there was really a lot of snow, and the road was cleaned. The road further towards Lago Dimon is in winter and spring not cleaned. Also in summer it is closed for public traffic. So, for skiing it would mean long crossings of slopes, in summer the road would be a great opportunity for mountain biking.
The road from Paularo towards Passo del Cason di Lanza is in winter not cleaned. See tourist information in Paularo for more details. So for tour skiing from the east and north, the approach is very long.
From Laipacco, in the But valley, a narrow mountain road goes up ro Rif. Casera Pramosio, 1521 m. That road is in summer opened for public traffic, in winter it is most certainly not cleaned.
Routes OverviewFrom the map sketch it can be seen that Monte Paularo and Monte Dimon can be reached by marked paths from virtually all sides. Many of these routes can be done also in winter and spring by skis, but I have no detailed information.
1. The shortests and in summer most used is the NW approach. Only good 500 meters of altitude must be overcome from Rif. Casera Pramosio. The path first reaches Forcella Fontanafredda and then continues by the ridge on top of Monte Paularo.
2. By the SW ridge a long approach comes directly up from Paluzza. From the village Zenodis or from the end of the road, which comes from Paluzza, we have by an easy path some 1600 or 1100 meters of altitude to overcome.
3. From Albergo Castel Valdaier. Due to good starting point and southern orientation, the ascent by the SE ridge and by the mountain road to Lago Dimon is very popular. The SE ridge to Monte Neddis is a very popular ski tour. From the parking place we first go up by ex ski terrains; ski lifts are now removed. We make sure not to go too much towards the right, encircling the mountain is not needed. So above Casera Valdaier we go directly up and reach the ridge close to Cima Val di Legnan, 1709 m (communication tower there). Then the broad and comfortably flat ridge begins. It's very panoramic and brings us to the summit slopes of Monte Neddis. The last 200 meters are again moderately steep and nowhere exposed. From Monte Neddis it is some 30 minutes more to the summit of Monte Dimon. We first descend some 50 meters and then the rounded ridge continues to the highest point. 3 hours from the parking place, easy (also as a ski tour - which is very nice!).
4. From Paularo the ascents are also long and they join the above #3 approach on the SE ridge.
5. From Casera Ramaz. The approaches from Val Cercevesa are using mostly the shepherds paths, so also the marked paths are not aimed directly towards the both summits. But there are many unmarked shortcuts possible.
Concerning skiing, it must be said that even if these mountains are rounded and mostly grassy, not all slopes are appropriate for skiing. Some are steep as well, others are eroded. And also the nice side ridges towards the east end below in a deep gorge.
Red TapeThere are no limitations.
Huts and CampingAscents can be done in one day, even if some are quite long.
Rifugio Casera Pramosio, 1521 m. Opened in summer. Can be reached by a mountain road, a "bed and breakfast" type hut with 20 places. Tel. 0433/775757
Albergo Castel Valdaier, 1340 m. Can be reached by a mountain road, a hotel on a nice place where trailheads are.
When to Ascend?Any time of a season.
BooksGuidebook and photomonography (in Slovenian): V. Pogačnik: Kar na Karnijce. Založba Narava, 2011.
Your Help Needed
Can you in detail describe routes, other than the above by the SE ridge?
Do you have summer experience from the two mountains?
Do you know any other recommendable ski tour?
Any mountain biking experience?
Any interesting pictures of the two mountains from other sides?
Any nice picture from the banks of Lago Dimon?