The forca dell'Alpino (2,302 m) is a very high aerial cutting between the first shoulder of the Creton Culzei to the east and the so-called Pannocchia del Creton di Clap Grande to the west. It connects the De Gasperi refuge and the valley of Clap Grande with the characteristic, secluded Cadin di Dentro where we find the bivouac Damiana.
A proposal with an almost mountaineering flavour, and because you are close to the peaks, and because routes requiring a certain level of commitment are not lacking (there are vertical equipped rocky sections and the possibility of finding snow in the gully that drops into the Cadin di Dentro). A path not to be underestimated then and only suitable for those with a good level of fitness, mountain experience and familiar with passages of a certain type. A wonderful environment. A suggestion not to be missed! Equipment for a via ferrata and a helmet recommended for a relatively long stretch bellow the saddle on the south-facing side, where the original path, which has become unusable due to falling rocks, has been modified by the construction of a equipped by-pass.
Best time of year
From the chapel behind the De Gasperi refuge (reachable from Sappada via the Elbel pass using itinerary ns. 3 + 5 in 3:45-4:00 hours), take a path that, after crossing a small wood, pushes north into the great valley of Clap Grande, climbing it with tight turns (attention: chance of landslides) as far as the rocks at the base of Creton di Clap Grande. Ignoring the trail on the left that goes to the saddle of the same name, continue across the grassy / rubble-strewn ground aiming for the gully leading to the Forca dell'Alpino that closes up like a narrow funnel. The passage continues only as far as a large boulder that has crashed down in recent years, blocking the route. Here you have to go left for a fairly long stretch following the via ferrata positioned on the adjacent vertical wall of the nearby Pannocchia. Then, a gravelly and debris-filled slope reaches the high saddle. From here the excursionist descends steeply and rapidly along a gully (with snow until late in the season) as far as a rock jump (with handles and steps) before following a track that crosses the huge scree and soon reached the Cadin di Dentro close to the Damiana bivouac.
To return to Sappada use routes n. 11 or n. 12 (both in reverse). For very well-trained and experienced hikers there is the alternative route, n. 13.