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Adula / Rheinwaldhorn spring ascent

Published by Obviously , 18 June 2017, 14h40.

Region: World » Switzerland » Tessin » Bellinzonese
Date of the hike:14 May 2017
Hiking grading: T3 - Difficult Mountain hike
Mountaineering grading: F
Geo-Tags: CH-GR   CH-TI   Gruppo Rheinwaldhorn   Gruppo Cima di Pinadee 
Height gain: 1000 m 3280 ft.
Height loss: 2600 m 8528 ft.
Access to start point:Dangio, Paese
Access to end point:Dangio, Paese
Accommodation:Capanna Adula UTOE

We began from Dangio, Paese (not to be confused with Dongio) and headed on the red/white trail eastward and upward.  From Dangio to Soi, the trail is mostly a rocky road and can be covered fairly quickly and easily.  From Soi to Capanna Adula CAS, the trail becomes a proper hiking trail and steepens - it's pretty with the pine trees and is very well maintained.  Again, it's not very steep.  The CAS hut lies just at the top of a steeper section and had quite a bit of snow still.  From Capanna Adula CAS to Capanna Adula UTOE, most the the trail was covered in snow, with the rest being wet, slippery grass, but wasn't terrible.  You can see the UTOE hut from the CAS hut.

The hut was completely empty, so the four of us had it all to ourselves.  Plenty of firewood and fire starting supplies were around and the self-service kitchen was well equipped for cooking, but it is quite small.  The fountain outside the hut was flowing and we were glad we didn't have to melt snow for water.

From the UTOE hut, we followed the marked trail upwards through the snow and followed the cairns for several hundred elevation meters.  The glacier was completely covered in snow, allowing us to pick whichever line we wanted to ascent, but also hiding any crevasses.  We chose a high line and stayed close to the rock ridge on the left.  Snow was deep and we postholed most of the way up.  Near the Adulajoch, we went onto the ridge proper and it was a quick, compact snow line up to the summit.  Visibility was high, but for some cumulus clouds.  We were the first people to sign the Gipfelbuch in the month of May.  From hut to peak, it took us about 4 hours.

The descent was quick as we step/slid down the glacier.  Because the snow was quite heavy and warming up, and with a better vantage point to choose a route from, we stayed lower and got off the glacier as quickly as possible.  We had lunch at the UTOE hut, drank some coffee, cleaned up, and headed back down to avoid some incoming storms.  We made it to the CAS in record time, sliding down nearly half the trail.  For those with knee problems, the hike from the CAS hut to Dangio isn't too steep and it's a beautiful walk down. We nearly ran the last few kilometers to catch the bus.

Hike partners: Obviously

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