ApproachFrom the RIF. GNIFETTI (3647 m):
You reach the hut from Punta Indren, 3260 m (cable car from Alagna), in 1,5 h via Rif. Città di Mantova (350 hm), 45 min. from Rif. Mantova, 7 h from Alagna (2420hm). In the lower part, it is a marked way (no. 5). The traverse of the glacier is not marked. From Punta Indren, You traverse the ski-run, slowly going up on the Indrenglacier till you reach the outstanding rock band above which the Mantova-hut is situated (yellow-red signs). You climb up the rock steps (fixed ropes). From the hut, you go up over the E-side of the Lysglacier to the N and at the end over rocks to the Gnifettihut.
You reach Punta Indren on the marked hiking way no. 5 from Alagna via Dosso (1357m). You go to the Alpe Oltu (1847m, cable car station, 1,5 h) and furth in the Valle d'Olen up. You go along the Sasso del Diavolo and reach almost Colle d'Olen, wher you turn right to the Vigevano-hut (3 h). You go further along Passo Salati (2936m) to the ridge-crest and traverse Stolemberg. Over the side of the Indrenglacier, you reach the station (1 1/4 h, totally 6 h).
You reach the Gnifetti hut also from Gressoney in 6-7 h (1800hm). The lower part is a marked way (no. 6). Lift to Alpe Gabiet (1270 hm, 4,5 h). In the upper part: easy glacier walk.
You reach Alagna Valsesia by car on the road no. E62 from Brig via Simplonpass. You turn off at Ornavasso (near the Lago Maggiore) and follow the small route to the S via Omegna. Here turn right and drive along the western side of the Lago d. Orta to Borgosésia. In Borgosésia you take the road to the N an reach Alagna via Varallo and Scopello.
Route DescriptionBy cable car from Alagna Valsesia to Punta Indren (3260 m., 3 parts, 45 minute ca). From Punta Indren by an easy route until refuge Mantova (3498 m.) or ref. Gnifetti (3647 m.) on a path rock mixed snow (on hour and half from Punta Indren).
Sleep in one of these two refuges and early in the morning you start your climbing. Follow the glacier to the Lisjoch, Piramide Vincent on your right and Balmenhorn on your left. Don't miss a visit to Balmenhorn on the way. It's clearly visible with an oversized statue of Christ, erected in 1955, and a small hut, Capanna Balmenhorn, from WW1. From the pass keep to the left up by the ridge of the peak.
Time request: five hours from ref. Gnifetti, five hours and half from ref. Mantova.
During the weekends there can be a lot of traffic here. Don't stumble on the badly acclimatized weekend climbers lying along the path. There are several routes to the top, depending on what steepness you want. Take your pick, or follow the traditional path. Make sure you start early in the morning, when you can stand on the points of your crampons, in the afternoon you will sink down to your hips at some places.
The only technical part is an easy passage to on the last part near the peak (rock - I grade). Anyway, be carefull to the ledges.