Cima Tuckett, classic ski mountaineering in the Ortles Cevedale massif


Mountain guide Eraldo Meraldi presents Cima Tuckett (3462m), the classic ski touring route in Stelvio National Park, Ortles – Cevedale massif, Italy.

Cima Tuckett, also called Tuckett Spitze in German, is located in the Trafoi-Thurwieser subgroup of the Ortles – Cevedale massif. It takes its source between the Passi di Campo and the Passo di Tuckett on the south-eastern part of the Madaccio glacier. Its beautiful pyramid-shaped SE face overlooks the Campo glacier and is made up of extremely friable rocks, while the northern slope is covered with ice and, when covered with snow, elegant.

The mountain is named after the English climber Francis Fox Tuckett, one of the first to explore these mountains. The name was given by the famous mountaineer cartographer Julius Payer who, on September 12, 1866, made the first ascent to the summit via the northern ridge with mountain guide Johann Pinggera. The 1931 IGM map calls this summit Punta delle Baite.

The interesting and steep NW face was first climbed on August 14, 1931 by mountain guide Bormio Celeste Sertorelli and great ice climber Giuseppe Pirovano. The first ski descent was made on July 7, 1971 by Heini Holzer, the famous chimney sweep and mountain guide from Tubre in Val Venosta.

During World War I (1915-1918) the 1st Austrian Front was located here and in summer you can still see what remains of the many barracks, while in Passo di Tuckett it is interesting to note the remains of the former Rifugio Locatelli, built by CAI of Bergamo in 1937; this served as the basis for the beautiful and difficult climbs of the Trafoi – Thurwieser region and also for the once popular crossing from the Stelvio Pass to the Rifugio V Alpini in the Val Zebru. The Ninotta bivouac (3380m) is located slightly above and to the east of the pass, on the ridge that leads to the southern pre-summit of Madaccio di Dentro. Built on the basis of a military barracks, this bivouac is still in good condition and can accommodate up to nine people.

Modern mountaineering and ski mountaineering take little account of these bivouacs located in areas that are now more accessible; it could be very interesting to spend a night in a lonely place, enjoying the silence and maybe a magical sunset enjoying the beautiful mountains and savoring the slow pace of the evening, a prelude to a starry night that always fuels new dreams and brings peace to everyone’s heart.

TOPO: Cima Tuckett, Gruppo Ortles Cevedale