Alta Via 2 (day 2): Rifugio Genova to Rifugio Puez + Via Ferrata Piz Duleda
The second day on AV2 is incredibly scenic and features some of the best views in Parco Nazionale Puez-Odle within the first couple hours. If you’re looking to add a bit of extra adventure, there are also 3 short side trips and a great via ferrata easily incorporated into the day’s itinerary!
This comprehensive guide to Day 2 of Alta Via 2 contains detailed section times, route recommendations, adventurous side trips, via ferrata, and heaps of insider tips— use it to plan your hike & then refer back on the trail so you always know what to expect!
For a complete Alta Via 2 planning guide, check out this post: COMING SOON
Alta Via 2: Day 2 overview
Stats quoted here are for my recommended “adventure route” that incorporates side trips, summits & via ferrata whenever possible (in brackets, see stats for the standard AV2 route with no additions).
- Trail hours: 6.5hrs (4.5hrs standard AV2)
- Distance: 12km (12km standard AV2)
- Elevation gain & loss: 850m up & 700m down (900m up & 750m down)
- Side trips: 3 quick viewpoints described below, Via Ferrata Piz Duleda (carry-over; 2C)— rating system
- Huts: Rifugio Puez
Side trip: Zendleserkofel (30min)
If you fancy a quick morning jaunt for excellent views, leave your pack at Rifugio Genova and set off up the gradual hill (Zendleserkofel) just behind the hut.
In a matter of minutes, you’ll have a spectacular vantage point over the hut itself and many of the surrounding peaks within Parco Nazionale Puez-Odle. It’s an iconic photo opportunity well worth the time!
Rifugio Genova to Sobutsch (+ quick side trip, 30min)
Setting off properly from Rifugio Genova, hike a short distance back up the hill, ascending the ridgeline for an absolutely unbelievable panorama of dramatic limestone peaks.
From the ridgeline, you can follow a side trail a short distance upwards for a higher vantage point over the peaks. It will hardly even take 10min to get up, take photos, and return, so it’s worth the brief detour!
Sobutsch to Forcella di San Zanon (30min)
The route contours towards another trail junction only a few minutes away (there’s a large crucifix right near the trail markers, so you’ll know when you’ve arrived).
Side trip: viewpoint at Forcella di San Zanon (15min)
As before, this trail junction offers an excellent little spur trail that brings you to the top of a hill overlooking the dramatic tower of Forcetta. There are some great views to be enjoyed here!
Forcella di San Zanon to Forcella della Roa (2hrs)
From Forcella di San Zanon, the trail continues to curve around the hillside, gently traversing a rocky trail. Below the peaks, the route ascends steeply up some manageable scree via a series of switchbacks.
The final section of the trail is a bit of a push, but it’s worth it for the view from the top!
Via Ferrata Piz Duleda (45min)
From Forcella della Roa, there are two possible routes to Rifugio Püez. The first descends into the rocky basin more directly to the hut, but the more scenic option stays high all the way to the base of an easy via ferrata, which carries you up and over a pass before dropping to connect with the other trail in the lush meadow below.
There are several opportunities to put on your helmet and harness before you reach the first cable, and at some point you’ll also want to stow trekking poles— the final section is best enjoyed with 2 hands.
Over a series of 6 cables and a conveniently placed ladder, cross beneath Piz Duleda. You can’t quite make out the full route when you’re standing at Forcella della Roa (and we didn’t even know there was a via ferrata here until we were practically on top of it!), but it begins in a rocky gully just out of view and eventually gains the top of Forcella Nives at 2,740m.
The route is easy to follow, marked often by painted “3A” signs indicating the trail number, and the views as you look backwards from the cables towards the namesake Piz Duleda are truly jaw-dropping. It’s a slightly spicier route than the previous day’s Sass d’Putia, but still very attainable for beginners.
Forcella Nives to Rifugio Püez (2hrs)
After unclipping from the via ferrata cable and reaching the high point at Forcella Nives, put away your helmets and harness to drop steeply along a rocky trail towards Rifugio Puez.
Finally, the route reconnects with the other AV2 option (that descended through the scree to avoid the via ferrata) and wraps around a hillside on the left towards the hut.
Like the via ferrata, you really can’t see Rifugio Puez until you’re within spitting distance, but the final 20-30min of the day are very gradual and you should arrive at the hut with plenty of time before dinner is served at 6.30pm.
Night 2: Rifugio Puez
Although the scenery is beautiful and the 4-course dinner was very tasty, I didn’t really care for the dorm rooms in Rifugio Puez, which are stacked to the rafters with 3-level bunk beds. Try to get here a little earlier to score one of the lowers beds! Reserve Rifugio Puez on their website.
- Rooms: 31€ (12pax dorm only) OR half board
- Food: A la carte or half board (74€ for 3 courses, includes 15€ breakfast)
- Showers: 4€ for 4min
- Connectivity: None
- Alpine club discount: -11€ half board
RIFUGIO GUIDE COMING SOON
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