Monte Caplone

  • Monte Caplone
  • 1976 m.
  • Primary factor 1234 m.
  • Italy
  • Location: North 45:48.134, East 010:38.483 (GPS at the summit)
  • Difficulty: (YDS) class 1.
  • Climbed July 11. 2012.


How to get there:
This peak is west of Lake Gardia (Lago Garda) in Northern Italy. Locate the village Gargnano on the west side of the lake. Take the road that climbs up from the lake at this point. You should check that this road will serve the small village of Magasa. The road is medium narrow as it winds its way up to a reservoir (Lago di Valvestino), along this on its right hand side, before climbing further into the valley up to Magasa. Just as you are about to enter Magasa, a road goes sharply right with a sign saying Cima Rest. Take this road. The road will reach a local hilltop with a sign on your left hand side. There is parking for 2 cars on the left just before this sign. Park here, this is the trailhead, location N45:46.901, E010:37.625, elevation about 1210 meter.
Here is an overview of peaks climbed at my Europe 2012 summer trip.
Route description:
A very clear farm road heads across the field and uphill to some local buildings. Follow this road, ignore signs and trails that fork off. Continue steeply uphill and across this first hilltop. Continue to follow the main road as it descends on the other side of the hill, then reaches a local col before it gradually climbs, sort of heading right. You will soon find a number of trail signs. There may be a sign saying Monte Caplone, in any case, the correct route is now a trail leaving the road and going uphill to your left, you should take the trail that is highest and sort of follows the top of a local ridge.
Continue uphill and through the forest until you emerge into more open grass land. Before this, you have crossed a nice little stream (small waterfall) that provides good drinking water. Higher up on the grass, you will see a fenced in area on your left. Keep right and continue to climb as the trail becomes less distinct. You will soon run into a small farmers road. Follow this road uphill until it hooks up with an old military road from WW-I. This location is N45:48.268, E010:37.679, elevation 1790 meter.
Take this road to the right as it first descends and even pass through a small tunnel. These roads are impressive evidence of the work and efforts during the (completely meaningless) war between Austria and Italy (1914-1918). Follow the road until it crosses the main crest just north of Monte Caplone. From here, a smaller trail will lead you directly up to the summit.
We had escaped from bad weather up in north-east Italy and established camp at a nice (4 star) hotel on the west coast of Lake Garda (Malcesine). A quick look at the map revealed 3 local peaks each having more than 1000 meter of prominence. These would be my goals for the next 3 days. I decided to start with Monte Caplone. Leaving after a nice breakfast, I arrived at the trailhead around 1130 and started hiking at 1140.
The route was nice and the details of the old military road were interesting as always in this region. I reached the summit at 1310. It had been obscured by clouds when viewed from below, but now it cleared and I had a pretty good view. Leaving after a nice 15 minute rest, I was back at my car in one hour.
I drove home taking the Lago Garda ferry across, thus avoiding the traffic near the north end of the fjord. Waiting for the ferry, I looked at some nice swans. This crossing is also a fine viewpoint for looking across at Monte Baldo.