6 - 7
FATMAP difficulty grade
A ski tour packed with peaks and couloirs in the stunning Fanes National Park in the Dolomites - the Ciamin Circuit is a total gem.
Start the day at the luxurious Rifugio Fanes (2,060m) and descend the valley on the cat track - an easy ski that will help to get the legs warmed up.
At around 1,823m put on your skins and begin the steady but sustained skin up to the Forca Di Ciamin at 2,395m.
The slope is west/north west facing. The views at the top of the col are fantastic and you can see all the way over to Tre Cime Di Lavaredo to the East.
There is always the option to retrace your steps here if legs or conditions dictate. The bootpack up to Ciamin requires ski mountaineering experience, a head for heights and avalanche awareness.
The hike takes you just to the right of the summit of Ciamin itself (2,610m). Once at the top, put on your skis and descend the Gran Valun - a steep but not hugely intimidating face.
This north facing slope can hold fantastic snow.
After some cracking turns, the obvious line takes you in a slightly north easterly direction before the jewel in the descent appears on your left - the Val Dal Sei - an impressive and narrow but not excessively steep couloir that faces northwest. The Val Dal Se gradient is around 35-40 degrees and offers fantastic skiing and cold snow sheltered from the sun.
Descend between the spectacular walls of a classic Dolomites couloir and follow the obvious line that leads back to the main track.
At this point you can either head to the nearby Rifugio Pederu (1,548m) for a wee snack or just crack on with the 4-5km skin back up to the Rifugio Fanes. After a long day, the 500m of ascent can drag but thoughts of a few beers on the terrace in the sunshine will keep you going!