Analysing terrain data
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The exposure grade does not take into account objective hazards (stone fall, seracs, etc) but only the consequences of the skier falling.
Low Exposure (E1): Exposure is limited to that of the slope itself. Getting hurt is still likely if the slope is steep and/or the snow is hard.
Medium Exposure (E2): As well as the slope itself, there are some obstacles (such as rock outcrops) which could aggravate injury.
High Exposure (E3): In case of a fall, death is highly likely.
Extreme Exposure (E4): In case of a fall, the skier faces certain death.
Unfortunately, the ‘Forcella Staunies’ chairlift shut down in the summer of 2016, so a great deal more effort is now required to enjoy the popular steep lines of the Cristallo mountain range and this discourages lots of skiers.
Take the Son Forca chairlift, then follow the slope to where the old ‘Forcella Staunies’ chairlift was.
From here, skin up the old ski slope to the middle station, then continue further up to the steep wide couloir at the top of Forcella Staunies.
Attach the skis to your backpack and continue climbing up on foot (crampons are usually recommended).
You will need to rope up as you have to climb up a very steep ladder behind of the chairlift station.
This is the beginning of the famous via ferrata "Ivano Dibona”.
Normally, the iron ladder is buried under snow and you'll have a very steep 10m gully to climb.
At the top on your right, you have a bolt that you can use to belay your partners (sometimes an ice axe can also be useful). The descent starts on the other side (the Northern side), it is relatively steep and narrow for the first 100 meters.
Be careful when there is lots of snow, especially windslabs.
Drop in, ski the first section with jump turns, the couloir then makes a turn to the skier's left.
Be aware of the rocky cliffs before the couloir gets wider and less steep. Now you can enjoy lots of turns now and go further towards Forcella Verde.
Keep skiing down the valley and join a last steep slope, traversing across the skier's left under a rocky ridge ("Prà del Vecia" is the name of this valley on the Tabacco trail map).
Once you get down into the gully, beware of the boulders (they are usually well marked), once you reach flat terrain, take the skier's left and ski down among the trees in order to reach the cross country ski slope, that you should follow to the left until you reach the Cimabanche bar / restaurant, which is right in front of the bus stop, where you can head back to Cortina (check the bus time table in advance). Equipment needed: an ice axe, a harness, slings and carabiners plus a 30 metre rope which could be useful for the technical approach up to Forcella Staunies.