Alpi Apuane, as their name says, are comparable to the Alps rather than the neighbouring Northern Apennines, notwithstanding their distance from the alpine chain and their moderate height (the highest peak doesn’t join the 2000 meters of altitude). This fact is due to their steep and impressive faces, together with their geological origins. Monte Cavallo is a complex peak lying on the main apuan crest, between the Saddle of Cavallo and the Focolaccia Col. It’s shaped by a very long ridge NW-SE oriented, showing four fore-summits reaching approximately the same altitude; the highest point is lying in the middle of this ridge. Two others ridges are starting from the ends of the main one.
Cavallo has singular and symmetric shapes and it’s one of the best known and more frequently climbed peak in Alpi Apuane, in every season of the year; the beautiful and wide NE face and the SE one are often visited by the rock-climbers during spring, summer and fall, in reason of its interesting routes, while the Cambron Gully offers a very nice ice-climb during the winter months.
This sector of Alpi Apuane can be reached both from the Lunigiana region and Garfagnana region.
- Coming from A15 Motorway (Lunigiana)
From the A15 Parma – La Spezia Motorway take the Aulla exit. From here follow the SS 63 towards Cerreto Pass, then after Rometta turn to right, following SS 445 towards Fivizzano, Casola in Lunigiana, Minucciano, Gramolazzo and Gorfigliano. At the end of Gorfigliano take the road towards Vagli, then turn to right following the road to the Campaccio quarries and leave the car before entering the tunnel, after which the road becomes dirty.
- Coming from Garfagnana Valley
Getting to Castelnuovo Garfagnana take the road to Piazza al Serchio and Gorfigliano, then proceed as before.
From the tunnel either by foot or by a 4x4 follow the dirty road towards Focolaccia Col until you arrive underneath the NE face.
North-East Face counts some pleasant and interesting climbing routes, developing inside a singular mountain environment. From left to right:
- Gli Smemorati 6a, 250 m. - Via dei Cherubini 5b, 220 m. - Lovable 6a, 120 m. - Arte e Maniera 6a, 200 m. - Occhio alla curva 6a, 160 m.
On the narrow and shorter SE face you find six routes. From left to right:
- Paradiso Perduto 6a, 120 m. - Fog 6b+, 120 m. - Via dell’Architetto 6b, 90 m. - Fessura Centrale 4b, 100 m. - Via di Centro 4b, 100 m. - East Ridge 3a, 160 m.
- Canale Cambron
Difficulty: AD Exposition: North-East Starting altitude: 1630 Summit altitude: 1889 Difference in level: 270 m the ice-climb, the approach from Gorfigliano involves 1000 meters more Starting locations: Gorfigliano (Lucca, MS) Support: Bivacco Aronte al Passo Focolaccia
A worthwhile classic Alpi Apuane winter climb. Along the gully, on the rocks to the left, there are some equipped bealys (often with old pegs and slings, to be checked).