Varied mountain tour with ascent of the two short via ferratas Ifingersteig and Verdinserplattensteig
The tour takes us across the sun-drenched high plateau of Merano 2000, which is popular among outdoor sports enthusiasts of all kinds in summer and winter. We climb not only Meran's local mountain, the imposing Ifinger, but also the rocky Verdinser Plattenspitze. Interesting via ferratas lead to both peaks, which should by no means be underestimated, especially by newcomers to the mountains. The via ferratas can not only be used in combination as here, but of course also individually.
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There are no escape possibilities on the via ferrata, untrained mountaineers prefer to stay down, especially in the wet. The ropes on the Ifinger via ferrata may be too thick for the karabiners of the via ferrata set.
Complete via ferrata equipment (climbing harness, KS set, helmet, via ferrata gloves), hiking boots/climbing boots and possibly safety rope.
Piffing mountain station on Merano 2000 (1895 m)
32T 672374 5171821
Piffing mountain station on Merano 2000
From the mountain station Piffing we walk on a wide path in the direction of the Kuhleitenhütte. Continue straight ahead on path no. 3 (Kuhleitenweg). After about 1.6 km we leave the gravel path onto a narrow path that follows the ridge to Ifinger. We follow it until we meet path 19 near the Kuhleitenhütte, which leads us to the left up to Ifinger.
If you like, you can make a side trip to the Little Ifinger just before the summit, from where you have a good view of the rest of the way. Below the summit, the route to the Great Ifinger begins at a turnoff. From here the Ifingersteig is secured with thick ropes. If you are very sure-footed and free from giddiness, you can climb to the summit without any further safety measures, but the via ferrata set and helmet are recommended. First we follow a narrow path that leads into a stony band (A/B). Then we have to overcome some rock levels of difficulty A/B, briefly the difficulty changes to B/C. Then follows the key point of the climb: the crossing of a diagonal plate by means of friction climbing.
Arrived on the summit at 2581 m, we can not only enjoy the breathtaking view down to Merano, to the high Texel group and to the south far into the South Tyrolean Alps, but also see in northeast direction the rocky head of our next destination, the Verdinser Plattenspitze, in its entire splendour before us. But first it goes on the same way back to the Kuhleitenhütte, which lies on the green Gratkopf between the two mountains.
After a well-deserved stop we make our way to the top of the Verdins plate. Path no. 19 leads us along the ridge to the mountain until it makes a sharp turn and we stand at the foot of a scree field. An inconspicuous wooden shield and small red dots show us the way up into the gap between Verdinser Plattenspitze and Plattinger. When you reach the Scharte, the Verdinserplattensteig begins on the left to the summit. In case of difficulties up to B/C, the route follows the north ridge, alternating walking passages with beautiful climbing sections.
Once at the top of the Metallkreuz, the view to the east over the small, dark Kratzbergersee lake and to the Penser valley is particularly impressive, while in the north the barren, stony peaks of the other mountain range tower up. On the way back we descend via the via ferrata and the scree field below the Plattenspitze.
We meet path 19 again, but we do not walk back to the Kuhleitenhütte, but keep left. We pass the small chapel St. Oswald, where in winter there is also a ski lift. Continue along the path to the Waidmannalm, where you have another opportunity to stop for a meal. The wide trail 18A then takes you back to the top station of the Meran 2000 cable car.
Public transport friendly
By train to Merano, from there by bus line 1 to the cable car Merano 2000
On the Brenner motorway (A22) to Bolzano, then on the SS38 to Merano. Follow the signs "Meran 2000" to the bottom station
Large car park at the valley station of the Meran 2000 cable car