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Incompiuta Colodri main.JPG


Bepi’s house was a humble cabin right below the face of Monte Colodri. In front, on the left, was a dry and badly trampled field, where the climbers parked their cars – maybe eight places in all, but it was enough. There were large boulders all around, where, either after climbing or because the weather was very bad, we enjoyed challenging ourselves on those miniature walls. We didn’t call it bouldering yet, but, as was the case seventy years before, it was considered part of climbing too. Roberto Bassi, Hainz Mariacher, Manolo, Luisa Jovane ... the strongest of the moment. To us, penniless novices, all we could do was watch, or at most show off Lucio, who was a marvel on the rocks with his rippling muscles, and in this case he saved our ragtag bunch.

Bepi was a strange person. Sometimes he offered us something to drink, but usually only if there were girls with us. His house was full of stones, and he told us that in those stones he was looking for the foot he lost in the war. Inside the small house was a stove where a large pot of water was always boiling. I remember the smell of smoke and his romantically nonsensical stories.

My friends are taking the long route while I climb up directly, leaving behind on my right the pizzeria at the base of the face, which used to be Bepi’s house. On the left, a mesh fence blocks the entrance to the old parking lot, and trees have grown too close to the boulders, making it impossible to climb them now. I look up at the unchanged rock wall of Monte Colodri. Although it is still early, an oblique winter light is already highlighting every secret.

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East wall of Monte Colodri (Arco di Trento)

Via L’Incompiuta

Grill, Rabanser, Kluckner, Heiss

May 3–4, 2012

General notes

Approaching Arco from Trento, on the right just before town, you can’t miss the beautiful face of Monte Colodri. Once extremely busy because of its interesting classic climbs, but very greasy, it is now, after years of partial neglect, experiencing a resurgence in interest thanks to routes such as l’Incompiuta. This climb, one of the most beautiful in the entire valley, follows an impeccable logic, connecting extremely climbable dihedrals with beautiful slab sections. In fact, the distinctive characteristic of this route is precisely its classic style of climbing, with many standard pitons placed in the style of Ivo Rabanser, an artist in this field; the possibility to use nuts and friends for protection; and the belays with bolts and slings, secure when climbing and convenient for a quick retreat. Eliminating something, the route also becomes feasible for intermediate climbers, while free climbing the entire route requires navigating at least 6c.

Difficulty: one sequence of 6c+ and some of 6b, 6a obligatory

Time: 3–5 hours

Elevation gain: 350 meters

Equipment: standard climbing gear, friends and medium nuts


The attack is straight up from the pizzeria/pub at the base of the wall; blue writing with the names of the route setters indicates the beginning of the climb.

1) Climb vertically, move left and then return to the right, traversing below overhangs to complete a difficult sequence protected with various pitons. When you reach a sling, do not belay but continue to a belay with two bolts. (30 m V and VI with a sequence of 6b)

2) Traverse to the left using small handholds. A sling on an expansion bolt protects a very delicate traverse that takes you to easy rock. Belay higher up, beyond a small pillar and at the base of a beautiful dihedral. (35 m VI then a single sequence of 6c/6c+ and V)

3) Climb up to a fantastic undercut flake that allows you to traverse to the left and enter a very pronounced dihedral (obvious piece of rope); you climb the entire dihedral, belaying very high on the right, blue arrow. (60 m V+ and VI with some sequences of 6a, the pitch can be divided in two, some friends are useful)

4) In common with the Katia route, climb the greasy and obvious dihedral and then traverse to the right on ledges to the base of another long dihedral; alternatively, you can immediately move to the right and reach the same point on rock that is not too difficult. (25 m V then narrow trail)

5) Climb the dihedral, which is a fantastic climb; two large nuts may be more useful than friends. Higher up, a smoother section presents slightly greater difficulties, but here the protection offered by the pitons is secure. The belay is on a sling to the left of the dihedral. (30 m V+ and VI with a section of 6a+)

6) Continue in the dihedral, climbing some overhangs, and belay to the left of a small tree. (60 m V+ and VI, sequences of 6a, the pitch can be divided)

7) Now you climb on beautiful slabs, first easily, and then to the right an undercut flake presents some very delicate sequences on fantastic rock. (40 m V and VI, a sequence of 6b)

8) Slightly to the left, climb a small dihedral with good holds and exit on the left near a spike. (30 m V and V+)

9) Toward the left, climb up the small pillar and then, moving slightly obliquely to the right, climb some slabs interrupted with gray cracks. After about 40 meters you exit on top. (40 m V+)


Climb up to the cross; from there, on an easy trail heading south-southwest, you can reach the start of the via ferrata, which will quickly lead you back to the parking lot.

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