OverviewGeographical classification: Appennino Tosco-Emiliano e Tosco-Romagnolo > Appennino Parmense Orientale > Torricella
Torricella m. 1728
Monte Torricella is a twice summit belonging to Appennino Parmense Orientale and located on a secondary branch starting from the main boundary ridge between Emilia-Romagna and Tuscany. The peak overlooks with rocky and steep sides both the basin of Lago Verde towards West and the sky station of Pratospilla towards East. It’s a summit entirely located in Parma province, frequently climbed all round year; an outing is particularly advisable in winter time, in reason to climb the interesting ice-gullies lying on the Western side of the peak. This face overlooks the Lago Verde basin m. 1484 with some rocky spurs, originating some different gullies, rising from the indistinct basal slopes and becoming steeper in their upper part.
The most interesting sector of Western face is located on the right and runs between two gullies: a wide slope-gully named Canalone dei Ghiri on the left hand side, rising to a wide saddle, and a direct narrow gully, named Canale dei Merli, on the right hand side. In the middle of the summit ridge the wide obvious saddle separates the true summit, the Southern one, the highest, lying on the right, from the easier conventional summit, the Northern, on the left, where is located the summit cross.
Getting ThereThe starting point is Pratospilla m. 1351, a sky station located nearby the great lake named Lagastrello and the village of Rigoso in the Eastern Appennino Parmense.
The nearest town is Parma, a 200.000 inhabitants town, with a small airport offering some domestic flies and only a few international ones. A good choice of international flies is provided by Milano and Bologna International Airports, both situated at a reasonable distance (Milano 110 km., Bologna 90 km.).
Parma is well linked to Milano and Bologna by the A1 motorway (Autostrada del Sole) and to Tuscany by the A15 motorway (Autocisa).
- Access from A1 Motorway (Autostrada del Sole)
If you’re getting there from A1, coming from Bologna or from Milano, take the main Parma exit.
- Access from Parma to Pratospilla: follow the road SP 665 (Massese) towards Langhirano and Pastorello; getting the Pastorello roundabout carry on straightly to Ranzano, Palanzano and Monchio delle Corti, getting to Pratospilla, a sky station nearby the village of Rigoso.
Walking approach to South ridge normal route and West face
From Pratospilla m. 1351 follow the trail n. 707 to Lago Ballano; after 10 minutes leave it and take on the left the variant n. 707a, which skirts the Northern slopes of Monte Torricella, getting the Lago Verde. Don't reach the lake, but stay high over the left shore of the lake (summer mark n. 707), traversing under the West slopes of Torricella (1 hour from Pratospilla)
Routes overviewTorricella is climbed all year round, but especially in wintertime. The main winter routes are the following ones:
- South ridge (Normal route from Lago Verde)
Diffculty: Alpine PD
Vertical gain: 400 m. from Pratospilla, longer develop
The most interesting amongst the two normal routes, but not the easiest. The starting point is located on a saddle on the right hand of West face. The ridge, involving some short easy sections of rock climb, reachs the Southern summit.
- North ridge (Normal route from Pratospilla)
Diffculty: Alpine F
Vertical gain: 400 m. from Pratospilla
This route has a shorter approach that the previous one and it's an easier climb to the Northern summit (the conventional one); anyhow it's much less interesting that the previous route. This route is starting along the trail 707a, without reaching Lago Verde.
West Face winter gullies
- Canalone dei Ghiri
Difficulty: Alpine PD, 45°
Climbing length: m. 200
A wide slope rather than a gully, the easiest amongst the Western winter routes, located on the left hand side of the face. There is not a compulsive itinerary and it's a good route for beginners. Last meters are a bit steeper. The route leads on a wide saddle between the two summits.
- Central Gully
Diffculty: Alpine AD, 60°
Climbing length: m. 200, 4 pitches
First ascent: Pietro Bianchi, Alberto Rampini, Gianluca Pasquali, Federico Saccani 26-1-2008
An interesting ice-climb with some mixed sections running in the middle of West face. The most technical of the face
- Canale Bianco
Difficulty: Alpine AD-
Climbing length: m. 200
A good classic route, frequently climbed and entirely on ice or snow
- Canale dei Merli
Difficulty: Alpine PD+
Climbing length: m. 200
It's the shorter gully located on the right hand side of W face. Entirely on ice or snow.
Descent: the South ridge is more difficult, but panoramic and if you have climbed one of the W gullies has the advantage to return to the same starting point of the climb
The descent on the North side is shorter and joins the trail n. 707a without returning to the starting point of West face ice-gullies.
Red TapeThere are not particular restrictions in hiking, climbing and mountaineering.
Anyhow, since 1995 the areas of Val Cedra and Val Parma are located under the rules of the Regional Park named Parco dei Cento Laghi (One Hundred Lakes Park).
In late years these areas had been included inside a largest national park, named Parco Nazionale dell’Appenino Tosco-Emiliano (Tosco-Emiliano National Park); wood fires are prohibited as well as free camping and other harmful activity. The whole fauna and flora are protected. Don’t disturb fauna and other mountaineering and hikers’ peacefulness.
When to ClimbOn Monte Torricella it’s possible to climb all around the year. Winter ascents require the essential gear as rope, helmet, crampons, ice-axe, ice-anchors.
Climate and Meteo infoClimate is subcontinental, with cold and snowing winters and pleasant summers, dry but not too hot, because of the mitigating influence of the Tyrrenian Sea and the action of the winds.
METEO ARPA EMILIA-ROMAGNA
Where to stay
- Rifugio Pratospilla m. 1351 +390521890194
Capanna Cagnin is a little emergency shelter always open nearby Lago Verde
Guidebooks and maps
"Arrampicaparma" by Silvia Mazzani - Alberto Rampini, New edition 2011, Pareti e Montagne Edizioni
“Le valli del Cedra e del Parma (The Cedra and Parma Valleys)” Map 1:25.000 (CAI-Regione Emilia-Romagna)
“Alto Appennino Parmense Est” Map 1:50.000 (CAI-Regione Emilia-Romagna)
Parco Nazionale Appennino Tosco-Emiliano
Club Alpino Italiano Sez. di Parma