Ascent of Monte San Primo on 2013-05-09

Climber: Lee Newton

Other People:Solo Ascent
Date:Thursday, May 9, 2013
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Monte San Primo
    Elevation:1685 m / 5531 ft

Ascent Trip Report

On a family holiday to Lugano, I took a day to climb two close-by prominent summits. Leaving our accomodation at just before 6am, the traffic was as light as the road through Como and up the side of Lake Como was tortuous. I had chosen a southern approach for Monte San Primo, partly to avoid driving even further on the twisty narrow roads, and turned away from the lake to Zelbio, climbing many hairpin curves, and passing through the village. A few km further, the starting point for the walk at Piano del Tivano was obvious with a campsite, a couple of restaurants, and plenty of parking where I arrived at 07:30. After exchanging pleasantries in monosyllables and mime with a friendly farmer, I set off up the track past the campsite and the farm. This was like a dry stream bed which, higher up, became choked with deadfall, making progress tiresome. Noting that a path ran beside but above the streambed on the map, I thrutched and slithered my way out of the steep-sided valley until I found it. This was little better, with I guess about 15-20 years growth since it was last cleared. After wrestling my way through, I finally came at about 1300m altitude, to open grassy slopes, which were steep at first but eased slightly towards the top. I hit the ridge just east of the summit and arrived to find the ubiquitous large cross draped in Tibetan prayer flags. The views were hazy and the higher Alps already in cloud, but Grigna Settertrionale and Pizzo di Coca were prominent to the east, with the top station on Monte Generoso obvious to the west. Directly across the lake, I could see the day´s second objective, Monte di Tremezzo. In descent I chose to walk east to Cima del Costone and descend the south ridge form there, which was much better. Even after hitting forest, it was more open on the ridge until a barbed wire fence pushed me back into the valley where I started. I exited on the main road just east of my starting point and started the drive around the lake towards Tremezzo.
Summary Total Data
    Elevation Gain:706 m / 2316 ft
    Elevation Loss:706 m / 2316 ft
    Distance:6.5 km / 4 mi
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail, Open Country, Bushwhack
    Weather:Pleasant, Calm, Partly Cloudy
Ascent Statistics
    Elevation Gain:706 m / 2316 ft
    Distance:2.5 km / 1.6 mi
    Route:Il Vallone & South face
    Trailhead:Piano del Tivano  979 m / 3215 ft
    Time Up:1 Hours 25 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Elevation Loss:706 m / 2316 ft
    Distance:4 km / 2.5 mi
    Route:S ridge of Cima del Costone
    Trailhead:Piano del Tivano  979 m / 3215 ft
    Time Down:1 Hours 0 Minutes

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