5 - 6
FATMAP difficulty grade
The Branca Hut has so many amazing peaks and is such a great location it seems rude not to spend a few nights here.
Pizzo Tresero, 3594m, is an obvious and fine objective, with a number of different descents.
To start the skin you can either ski all the way down the zig zag road to the valley floor, or after 1 zig zag and a flat section, cut out on a long diagonal L to then skin or more likely crampon up a short steep section to flatter terrain.
Assuming you ski down the icy zig zag track, watching your speed, stop at the bottom at about 2330m and put your skins on.
Ascend up the N side of the steeper terrain,heading SE and passing an obvious gunbarrel descent gulley.
You can also skin up this, but the skinning track is normally lost from down tracks. Continue gently up onto the glacial snout then turn W and slightly more steeply for a short while, before accessing easy open glacial slopes heading more SW then flattening off.
Just after this point you will see many more tracks from above that are descending into the top of the gunbarrel descent you have skirted.
The way ahead is fairly obvious.
Beyond you is a big icefall.
You pass to its R, heading NW onto the ridge at about 3220m.
Here you turn SW, then S and continue on up in a more W direction in the shade of Punta Pedranzini, to a small saddle between the two peaks.
Turn R and walk up the easy ridge to the summit.
You can elect to carry skis if you are feeling brave enough to ski from the summit, but most leave them at the saddle.
There are many options for the descent, including reversing your line of ascent.
Alternatives include hugging the steep slopes under Punta Pedranzini (this is the track marked) then taking fresh tracks to the R of your ascent line.
The gunbarrel is an attractive fun line (this is the track marked) but quickly gets skied out.
The ascent route in descent allows a wider traverse on mellow open slopes with more chance of fresh tracks.