Serra dell'Argentera

Page Type Page Type: Mountain/Rock
Location Lat/Lon: 44.17780°N / 7.30550°E
Additional Information Elevation: 10816 ft / 3297 m
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East side of Serra...


 North side of...
Serra dell’Argentera is a overshadowing and impervious rocky massif in the heart of Maritime Alps of witch is the highest elevation.

All its slopes are steep and rocky, the western side appear as a barrier high more than 800 meters, but still more grand is the north side, furrowed by the famous Lourusa colouir.

All its sides are in Italian territory, it overtops the Gesso Valley (located between two secondary valleys: Valletta and Rovina) and is included in the beautiful Maritime Alps Natural Park.

It is composed by crystalline rock (gneiss), very appreciated from the climbers thanks to its good quality.

It is formed of a main ridge with four summits: Cima Sud (3297m), Cima Nord (3286m), Punta del Gelas di Lourusa (3261m), Monte Stella (3262). Then there are other summits that are not usually considered as part of Serra dell’Argentera, however they are included in the same massif because situated in secondary ridges. The most important of them is Corno Stella (3050m), its SW face is one of the most famous climbing walls of Western Alps and the most popular of Maritime Alps.
The origin of the name Argentera comes from the Latin word “argentum” (silver, bright) and it is probably due to the bright aspect of the snow-fields that lasts on its sides till the middle or late summer.
From the summit the view is spectacular, in fact in a sunny and dry day, the view ranges from French Provence to Swiss Alps (Valais), to Central Alps and Apennines of Toscana and Liguria.
Serra dell Argentera - Map


Valscura lake. In the...
On its walls have been written the most important pages of historical alpinism in Maritime Alps : during the period between the end of IX century and the beginning of XX century a lot of climbers, arrived from different European countries, took by assault this mountain.

In the 1879 W.A.B. Coolidge (GB) and the alpine guides Christian and Ulrich Almer (CH) won the South summit.

Getting There

By car
Coming from North, take the Torino-Savona motorway and exit at Fossano; from here take the SS 231 road to Cuneo , then the SS 20 road to reach Borgo San Dalmazzo, From Borgo S.D. , following the SP 20 up to the Gesso valley up to Valdieri. Beyond this village there is a road fork: take to right to the thermal baths of Sant’Anna di Valdieri or to left to Rovine lake.

From the Ubaye Valley ( France ), drive east on SS21 road (Colle della Maddalena) and follow the previous itinerary at Borgo San Dalmazzo.

Coming from From Nice (Fr) and Ventimiglia, take the Tenda Pass SS 20 road towards Limone Piemonte to get Borgo San Dalmazzo and follow the previous itinerary.

Coming from Genova: take the motorway to Savona , then Torino-Savona motorway and exit at Mondovì, then Cuneo and join the first itinerary at Borgo San Dalmazzo.

By train
Using the Torino-Cuneo-Ventimiglia you can get off at Borgo San Dalmazzo station and take the bus.

By bus
There are several buses a day to Valdieri run by the Società Nuova Benese (Tel. 0171/692929); terminus: piazza Torino in Cuneo ; main stops: Cuneo and Borgo San Dalmazzo railway stations. From Valdieri to the Thermal bath of S. Anna di Valdieri and Rovine lake there is a seasonal bus service.

By plane
The nearest airport ( 30 km ) is Cuneo-Levaldigi, from which a limited number of national flights leave (Tel. 0172/374374). The international airport Torino-Caselle and Nice airport ( France ) are 100 km and 130 km away respectively.

Routes overview

None of the routes to Serra dell’Argentera is easy.

- The normal route is classified as “easy alpinism” in fact there are a few easy rock passages, but is very exposed with danger of fall of stones; the route starts from Rifugio Remondino, reaches the Detriti pass (3122 m), runs through a ledge across the SE face, then reaches the SE spur of S summit, 30 meters far from it. Height difference:1532 m

Other classical routes are:
- “Sigismondi ridge”, nice easy climbing route on the S ridge to S summit
- “Campia route”, another nice climbing route that follow the central spur of the W face

More information @ (Italian)

Red Tape

Within the borders of the Maritime Alps Natural Park dogs generally are not allowed, except on a few trails, and camping is forbidden (except for emergency situations). Off road Mountain biking is allowed. No fees are due.

Huts and Camping

Rifugio Remondino ( 2430 m ) Proprietary CAI (Alpine Club) of Cuneo , Nr. of beds 50
Guarded from spring to autumn.
Tel. 0039 0171 97327 - 0039 328.544.0495 The hut is described in another page.
Rifugio Bozano ( 2453 m )
Proprietary CAI Ligure Nr. of beds 43
Guarded from spring to autumn.
Tel. 0039 0171 97351
Base for all the routes of western face and Corno Stella.
Rifugio Morelli-Buzzi ( 2450 m ) Proprietary CAI Cuneo Nr. of beds 44
Guarded from spring to autumn.
tel. 0039 0171 97394
Rifugio Genova-Figari ( 2015 m ) Proprietary CAI Genova
Nr. of beds 60
Guarded from spring to autumn.
tel. 0039 0171 978138
Base for all the routes of east side
Bivacco Varrone (2091m)
Proprietary CAI Cuneo
tel. 0039 0171 67998
Base for Lourusa coulouir and Corno Stella
Bivacco del Baus ( 2650 m )
Proprietary CAI Ligure
Tel 0039 010 592122
Base for some routes on east side
There is a camp area close by the car parking beyond the thermal bath; it should be managed by the Park.

Serra dell’Argentera, Chiotas and Brocan Lakes seen from Cima Ghigliè

Maritime Alps Natural Park

Maritime Alps Natural Park...
It is the largest Park in Piemonte and one of the largest in Italy .

Several peaks more than 3000 m . high, lakes, grasslands, small glaciers, the abundance of Alpine fauna and of botanical species constitute a unique environmental heritage.

Twinned with the French Mercantour National Park since 1987, it preserves an alpine area of 100,000 hectares which was awarded the "European Diploma for the Environment" in 1993.

LINK of Maritime Alps Natural Park

Mountain Conditions

Weather forecast:
Piemonte and Valle d’Aosta
Regione Piemonte

Books and Maps

Alpi Marittime vol. II – Guida ai Monti d’Italia – Published by CAI-TCI (Italy)
In Cima, 73 normali nelle Alpi Marittime - Bruno, Michelangelo (Italian)
Argentera/ Mercantour Alps No 5 Hiking Guide - Paperback, plus Folded Map, Scale 1:25 000 - Published by IGN (France)

Argentera Mercantour Map & Guide, 5 - Scale 1:25 000 - Publisher: IGC ( Italy )
Alpi marittime e Liguri – Scale 1:50 000 - Map Published by IGC ( Italy )
Parco Naturale Alpi Marittime. Sheet 113 - Scale 1:25 000 - Map Published by IGC ( Italy )
Parco naturale delle Alpi Marittime, scale 1:25.000, Map Published by Blu Edizioni (Italy)

Additions and CorrectionsPost an Addition or Correction

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sarme - May 28, 2006 10:08 pm - Hasn't voted

New book

New book called "Meridiani Montagne n°20 - Alpi Marittime" is available in Italy newspaper kiosk since 15 May 2006. Good articles and photos. A great map.

Viewing: 1-1 of 1



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Maritime AlpsMountains & Rocks