Catinaccio (Rosengarten)

Catinaccio (Rosengarten)

Page Type Page Type: Area/Range
Location Lat/Lon: 46.44720°N / 11.64050°E
Activities Activities: Hiking, Trad Climbing, Sport Climbing, Aid Climbing, Via Ferrata, Skiing
Seasons Season: Spring, Summer
Additional Information Elevation: 9850 ft / 3002 m
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The Catinaccio Group - also known as Rosengarten, German name in use on the South-tyrolean side of the massif - is a fine and famous group belonging to the Western Dolomites and located among the Val di Fassa, the Val di Tires and the Val d'Ega. The highest peak of the group is the Catinaccio d'Antermoia 3004 m.  Cima Catinaccio 2981 m is the second highest summit of the group, after Catinaccio d’Antermoia, this latter being the only summit in the group exceeding the 3000 meters.

Punta Kafmann summit view labelled
Punta Kafmann summit view labelled

The Catinaccio group has a quite simple structure, just as a big ridge oriented North-South, starting from Seiser Alm (alpe di Siusi) and ending with the Passo di Costalunga (Carer Pass). Highly frequented in summer from the hikers, because of fine sceneries and paths that cross it, and from the climbers. The Vajolet towers, three spires that even if lower are as famous as the Lavaredo, are the sector more popular with alpinists. Moreover the Roda di Vael, with its big red wall which you can see from Carer Pass, and Catinaccio East wall, with many fine routes very difficult and fine routes, recall the climbers' attention in a particular way. The Catinaccio group is also very popular with advanced hikers and scramblers, due to the presence of some Via Ferrata, such as those of the Catinaccio d'Antermoia and Santner.

Catinaccio range from east
Catinaccio range from East - Photo RenatoG


The most frequented way to amuse this group is getting it from Val di Fassa (TN), on the East side. Gardeccia (above Pera di Fassa) is the central point from where to start to several hikes and climbs. Another approach is done from Passo di Costalunga and from the road between Passo Nigra and Passo di Costalunga.

Panorama from west
Catinaccio range from West - Photo RenatoG

The Catinaccio Group is divided into eight sub-groups:

Principe, Molignon-Antermoia, ValbonaLarsec, Catinaccio Centrale, Roda di Vael, Coronelle-Mugoni and Dorsale Nigra-Montalto.  In the following chapters the most important among them will be described. 

Catinaccio group - panoramic...
Catinaccio - Rosengarten Group - panoramic from Sciliar (NW)
Catinaccio - Rosengarten...
Catinaccio - Rosengarten Group seen from Pale di San Martino

Catinaccio group annotated view from Corno di Tres
Catinaccio group annotated view from Corno di Tres


Getting There

Catinaccio/Rosengarten, the North part
Catinaccio/Rosengarten, the North part


 Coming from Lombardia, Veneto or Emilia-Romagna the best road is the Brennero Autoroute: get out in Ora (Auer) and with a nice trip through the Val di Fiemme and Val di Fassa you can reach the Eastern side of the group, the most attended.

- Coming from Austria the best road is getting out from the Brennero Autoroute in Bolzano (Bozen) than, via Nova Levante, reach the Passo di Costalunga (with its wonderful Carezza lake) and the Val di Fassa

For the approach to the different sub-groups see the dedicated sections.



Grasleiten Valley
Grasleiten Valley


The Principe subgroup is a sharp chain about 1500 meters long which dominates the Conca del Principe and the Rifugio Bergamo (Grasleiten Hutte) with rocky walls. It's a small subgroup - uncrowded and not fully explored - consisting of only four peaks: the Cima di Fuori del Principe 2698 m, the Cima di Mezzo del Principe 2705 m, the Cima di Dentro del Principe 2672 m and the Torre del Principe 2568 m.


Catinaccio d'Antermoia seen from the summit of Cresta di Davoi
Catinaccio d'Antermoia seen from the summit of Cresta di Davoi



This subgroup includes the highest summit of the whole group: the Catinaccio d'Antermoia 3004 m, the only mountain of the Catinaccio group to overcome the 3000m threshold, in which page you can find complete info about it. In the subgroup there are few other peaks, all interesting, such as the Cògolo del Lago 2811 m and the Croda dei Cirmèi 2902 m.

Water on the Moon
Water on the Moon, Lago Antermoia




The Passo Antermoia 2710 m divides the Larsèc subgroup from the Molignon-Antermoia. The Larsèc, also famous with the name Dirupi di Larsèc, is a wild and secluded area including many summits and rock towers. The rock is not always fine, anyhow there are some good climbing routes and the advantage is that in this group, even in summer, you can find few people and stillness.

Dirupi di Larsec, Catinaccio group
Dirupi di Larsec seen from San Giovanni

Main summits : Cima Scalieret 2887 m - Cima Larsec 2891 m - Pala di Mezdì - Gran Cront 2778 m - Punta Scalpello - Pala della Ghiaccia

Cima Scalieret
Cima Scalieret


From the climbing point of view,  the most frequented summits in reason of the beauty of the rock and the proximity to Gardeccia are Campanile Gardeccia and Guglia del Rifugio.

The most comfortable points of support for climbing or walking in this area, both situated in the Gardeccia basin, are:

Rifugio Gardeccia 1949 m
Rifugio Stella Alpina


Cima Or. di Valbona, NW edge
Cima Or. di Valbona, NW edge


The Valbona subgroup includes some low frequented summits, as the Teste di Agnello 2682 m, the Crode del Ciamin 2759 m, the Piccola Valbona 2802 m and just to the west of Catinaccio d'Antermoia, divided from it by a valley, the Cima Grande di Valbona 2824 m, the main summit of this subgroup. On the NW edge of the Cima Orientale di Valbona (Valbona East summit) 2705 m there is the fine Dulfer route (D sup).


View from Teste d'Agnello ridge
View from Teste d'Agnello ridge


Croda del Ciamin Or.-Tschaminspitze
Croda del Ciamin Or.-Tschaminspitze

Catinaccio Centrale -  Vajolet and Croda di Re Laurino

The central sector of the Catinaccio is the most famous and majestic part of the whole group. It is made up of two more or less parallel chains with a North-South trend, the central Catinaccio chain with the main Catinaccio summit and the Vajolet and Croda di Re Laurino chain.

Catinaccio e Torri del Vajolet
Catinaccio e Torri del Vajolet

Catinaccio main summit 2981 m is the most important mountain of the whole group, its name comes from the two big basins ("catini" in Italian) in the upper part of the East wall.

The sunny East wall of Catinaccio
The sunny East wall of Catinaccio

On this wall, about 700 m drop, there are many routes:
The most classic, important and climbed is the Steger route (TD - very elegant). Many other routes get the summit across the Southern "catino".  Some extreme routes, on the black wall, get the Northern "catino" (the largest one).
On the West side Catinaccio shows a short but wide wall which right end overlooks a large saddle that divides Catinaccio from Croda di Re Laurino (here the Passo Santner - 2741 m). In the proximity of this pass it starts the Normal route (II degree UIAA - not for hikers). Check here on SP the Catinaccio main page to get the complete description of the Normal route and an exhaustive list of the routes: Catinaccio/Rosengartenspitze. 

At the right limit of the East wall a big cylindrical tower, the Punta Emma, has three very fine and classic routes often climbed : the Piaz route (TD inf), the Steger route (TD inf) and the Fedele route (D sup).

At the left limit of the East wall there is the Forcella Sud del Catinaccio 2680 m, located between the Catinaccio main summit and the Cresta di Davoi, an extended ridge along which several rocky peaks are aligned, among which the fine Punta Kafmann.

Torri del Vajolet and Refuge Re Alberto
Torri del Vajolet and Refuge Re Alberto


In the Vajolet and Croda di Re Laurino chain we see the Torri Minori del Vajolet, the Torri Settentrionali del Vajolet and the world-renowned tryad of Torri del Vaiolet including Torre Winkler 2800 m, Torre Stabeler 2805 m in the middle and Torre Delago 2790 m, whose celebrated image constitutes a formidable icon of the Catinaccio group.

At the end of the chain is situted the Croda di Re Laurino 2813 m, which East wall is rising for about 100 m over the Passo Santner- On the opposite side (West) it drops with a majestic fine wall, that is famous for the "Enrosadira" (at sunset the wall gets a brilliant red colour).

Re Alberto shelter and Croda di Re Laurino
Re Alberto shelter and Croda di Re Laurino East side


Vaiolet, Croda di Re Laurino,...
West wall of Croda di Re Laurino


A very fine hiking turns round the Catinaccio subgroup :
starting from Gardeccia - passo Coronelle - passo Santner - Vajolet valley to come back to Gardeccia - it takes few hours and has only one point that can require attention if some snow or ice is still there (fixed ropes).
The best huts to stay for climbs and walks on Catinaccio East wall here are located in the Eastern side of the group :

- Rifugio Gardeccia 1949 m
- Rifugio Stella Alpina 1950 m

Other important huts to climb or hike here :

- Rifugio Re Alberto I, at foot of the Vajolet towers - 2620 m
- Rifugio Vajolet - 2243 m
- Rifugio Preuss 2243 m
- Rifugio Passo Principe - 2600 m
- Rifugio Passo Santner 2741 m

On the Western side of the chain:

Rifugio Fronza alle Coronelle 2337 m

Mugoni and Coronelle

It's an important but little known horseshoe-shaped subgroup, containing the Gran Busa di Vaèl, including some summits.

- Coronelle 2794 m is a long ridge connecting the Catinaccio with the Mugoni, no climbing importance but very fine for hiking.
- Mugoni 2757 m, with various summits. The Cima sud dei Mugoni is a majestic tower with the famous difficult Vinatzer route, often climbed.
- Cigolade 2482 m with various summits.

The stunning wall of Cima Mugoni Sud
The stunning wall of Cima Mugoni Sud
le Coronelle - south ridge of...
le Coronelle - south ridge of...


The best huts to climb here :

Rifugio Gardeccia 1949 m
Rifugio Stella Alpina 1950 m
Rifugio Fronza alle Coronelle 2314 m

Roda di Vael

The Rotwand (Roda di Vaèl) in the afternoon light
The Rotwand (Roda di Vaèl) in the afternoon light
Tscheiner Spitze / Sforcella (2810 m) in sunrise glow
Tscheiner Spitze / Sforcella (2810 m) in sunrise glow


The Roda di Vaèl chain is formed by imposing and famous peaks, such as the celebrated Roda di Vaèl (Rotwand) 2806 m and is majestic red wall, on which it runs the Buhl route, a spectacular route always ready to be climbed by the skilled climbers. Many other routes on this wall, all very difficult, some extreme.

Other well known summits are the magnificent Sforcella 2791 m, the Roda del Diavolo 2723 m, the 
Croz di Santa Giuliana 2670 m adn the Torri del Masarè.
Useful huts for climbing here:

- Rif. Roda di Vaèl 2283 m
- Rif. Pederiva  2283 m
- Rif. Paolina 2127 m


Roda di Vael, Sforcella and Mugoni (Eastern Catinaccio)
Roda di Vael, Sforcella and Mugoni (Eastern Catinaccio)


Red Tape

No particular restrictions in climbing and hiking. The road starting from Pera di Fassa to Gardeccia is open to the private cars as far as the small hamlet of Soial. Private cars beyond Soial are not allowed.

Natural Parks

Cima Catinaccio is located inside the Natural Park Sciliar-Catinaccio and Latemar. This area, shared between the provinces of Bolzano and Trento, is one of the nine mountain systems of the Dolomites acknowledged as UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is one of the most important systems worldwide for the study of the stratigraphy of the Triassic, in reason of the plenty of fossils on Alpe di Siusi, the relationship between carbonate and volcanic sediments, and the fact that the outcrops are easily accessible.  Catinaccio, with the stunning Vajolet Towers, forms a series of peaks and sharp needles showing the movement of an island which sank into the sea 240 million years ago. More info about Dolomiti Unesco World Heritage here:

Dolomites living mountains
Dolomiti Unesco

When To Climb

Hiking and climbing: Summertime (from June to the end of September)
Ski-mountaneering (from Gardeccia toward northern side, passo Principe): February and March 

Camping and Huts

Rifugio/Hut Height Open Tel.
Re Alberto I / Gartlhütte 2620m mid June - end Sept. +39 0462 763428
Passo Santner / Santner Pass Hütte 2734m not available +39 0471 642230
Aleardo Fronza / Rosengartenhütte 2337m mid June - mid Sept. +39 0462 764461
Vajolet 2243m mid June - mid Sept. +39 0462 763292
Preuss 2243m mid June - end Sept. +39 0462 764847
Gardeccia 1963m mid June - mid Oct. +39 0462 763152
Ciampedie 1998m beg. June - mid Oct. +39 0462 764432
Negritella 1990m mid June - mid Sept. +39 0462 764097
Stella Alpina 1963m June - Oct. +39 0462 764388
Roda di Vael / Rotwandhütte 2280m mid June - mid Sept. +39 0462 764450
Catinaccio 1960m end May - end Sept. +39 0462 766987
Passo Principe / Grasleitenpasshütte 2599m end June - end Sept. +39 0462 764244
Bergamo al Principe / Grasleitenhütte 1887m not available +39 0471 642103
Antermoia 2476m mid June - mid Sept. +39 0462 750480
Rifugio Stella Alpina and Catinaccio
Rifugio Stella Alpina
Re Alberto shelter and Croda di re Laurino
Rifugio Re Alberto
Refuge Roda di Vaèl.
Rifugio Roda di Vaèl
Croda d. Lago
Rifugio Antermoia

Many very confortable campsites in Val di Fassa.


Meteo Trentino 
Dolomiti Meteo - Trentino 
Meteo Bolzano

Guidebooks and Maps

The most up-to-date climbing guidebooks are:

"Arrampicare sul Catinaccio e dintorni" by Mauro Bernardi, Ed. Athesia, 2013
“La nuova guida del Catinaccio” by Antonio Bernard, Ed. Mediterranee, 2008 – A wide selection of the Catinaccio group climbing routes 
"Arrampicare Dolomiti Nord-Occidentali 
"IV grado Dolomiti Occidentali" vol. I by Emiliano Zorzi, ed. Idea Montagna 2011 
"IV grado Dolomiti Occidentali" vol. II by Emiliano Zorzi, ed. Idea Montagna  

Catinaccio guidebook
Catinaccio guidebook
Guidebook La nuova guida del Catinaccio
Guidebook La nuova guida del Catinaccio
Guidebook Gruppo del Catinaccio
Guidebook Gruppo del Catinaccio
Dolomiti Occidentali Guidebook
Dolomiti Occidentali Guidebook
Guidebook Arrampicare Dolomiti Nord-Occidentali
Guidebook Arrampicare Dolomiti Nord-Occidentali


Choosing among all the books regarding Catinaccio group, for information we mention the old classic but long-lost guide:

"Sassolungo, Catinaccio, Latemar", Arturo Tanesini - Guida dei Monti d'Italia, ed. CAI-TCI (1953) and also: 
“Catinaccio” by Dante Colli and Gino Battisti - Tamari Editori in Bologna, 1984 

A fine hiking guidebook:

"Gruppo del Catinaccio" by Luca Visentini, Ed. Athesia (1979) also in German with the title "Rosengarten"

Another updated and excellent guidebook describing all the hikes and the Normal routes to the hundreds of summits of the whole range, with a lot of pictures, topos and very accurate maps is 

"Gruppo del Catinaccio" by Andrea Gabrieli, Luca Visentini Editore (2010)

- Maps

Rosengarten-Catinaccio Latemar - 1:25.000 sheet - Compass 
Val di Fassa e Dolomiti Fassane - 1:25.000 - sheet 06 - Tabacco
Sciliar/Schlern Catinaccio/Rosengarten Latemar-Regglberg - 1:25.000 - sheet 029 - Tabacco

Miscellaneous pics




Parents refers to a larger category under which an object falls. For example, theAconcagua mountain page has the 'Aconcagua Group' and the 'Seven Summits' asparents and is a parent itself to many routes, photos, and Trip Reports.

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