Baita Segantini is an alpine pasture hut directly facing the Pale di San Martino (Pala Group) massif in the Italian Dolomites. This scenic destination in Parco Naturale Paneveggio – Pale di San Martino will take your breath away. However, your experience will be greatly impacted by the time of day that you visit.
Relatively easy to access, Baita Segantini is extremely popular among families. Come mid-day, and the trail will be crawling with people. Therefore, we suggest a late-afternoon hike, in which you end your day at Baita Segantini with an unforgettable sunset.
This loop hike combines the visit to Baita Segantini with the Monte Castellaz summit and takes 3:30 hours to complete. While it might be tempting to just hike to Baita Segantini, the views from Castellaz are something you don’t want to miss.
Baita Segantini and Monte Castellaz Loop Hike
- Trailhead: Passo Rolle, Trentino, Italy
- Type of Trail: Circuit
- Distance: 9.5 km
- Elevation Gain/Loss: 436 meters ascending/descending
- Difficulty: Easy
- Time Needed: 3:30 hours
- Route: Passo Rolle Parking Lot (1960 m) – Rifugio Capanna Cervino (2082 m) – Monte Castellaz (2333 m) – Baita Segantini (2174 m) – Rifugio Capanna Cervino (2082 m) – Passo Rolle Parking Lot (1960 m)
- Where to Eat: Rifugio Capanna Cervino or Baita Segantini
- Where to Stay: Hotel Colbricon Beauty & Relax in San Martino di Castrozza
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When Can You Hike to Baita Segantini and Monte Castellaz
Early June until mid-October, weather depending.
Baita Segantini is open daily in the summer from 8:30 am until 6:00 pm. Their summer season kicks off during the second week of June and continues until the end of September. At the Segantini hut, you can eat regional specialties such as dumplings, goulash, polenta, mushrooms, yogurt, and Apfelstrudel.
Baita Segantini and Monte Castellaz Trailhead
You can hike to Baita Segantini from Val Venegia or from Passo Rolle. For this particular hike, we recommend starting at Passo Rolle.
Passo Rolle (1989 m) is a high mountain pass connecting the Fiemme and Primiero Valleys in Trentino. The pass is a 15-minute drive from San Martino di Castrozza, the popular resort town in Primiero Valley.
Directly at the pass, there’s a large free parking lot. In Google Maps, this parking lot is called Parcheggio Malga Juribello, though we didn’t see a sign indicating that name when we arrived. Park here. GPS: 46.297579, 11.7893.
Related: Best Day Hikes in the Dolomites
Baita Segantini and Monte Castellaz Trail Directions
Passo Rolle to Monte Castellaz (1 hour)
From the Passo Rolle parking lot, cross the street with caution. Follow the gravel road up to a signed trail intersection. Bear right in the direction of Capanna Cervino and Baita Segantini. It takes about 15 minutes to walk to Rifugio Capanna Cervino.
From the Capanna Cervino mountain hut, proceed along the road in the direction of Baita Segantini for another 10-15 minutes. When you reach a signed trail intersection, turn left towards Castellazzo, leaving the road. It’s so tempting to head straight, but we promise it’ll be worth it. After turning left, you’ll hike beneath a chairlift and follow a grassy and then loamy track towards the solitary Monte Castellaz mountain.
After about 420 meters, turn left at the signed intersection, and horizontally hike across the southwestern slope of Mount Castellaz. The rocky footpath is more or less level at first but becomes increasingly steep as you gain elevation.
When you plateau, you’ll be greeted by the white Cristo Pensante (“Pensive Christ”) sculpture, which seems to guard the summit.
Explore the various viewpoints along the Castellaz ridge. From this elevation, the northern chain of the Pala Group looks like it’s jutting out of a sea of rolling green waves. The view is to die for. With its pale-colored 3000+ meter peaks, each uniquely beautiful, the Pala Group also looks like a gathering of giants turned to stone. From right to left, you’ll see Cimon della Pala, Cima della Vezzana, Campanile Travignolo, Cima Silvano, Cima dei Bureloni, and Monte Mulaz.
There’s a plaque in Italian indicating that Monte Castellazzo was fortified by the Italian Alpini in the First World War to safeguard Passo Rolle and other nearby artillery positions.
Monte Castellaz to Baita Segantini (1 hour)
From the summit, start the descent along the north flank of Monte Castellaz.
Shortly thereafter, the trail divides. When we hiked this trail, the right path was roped off for safety reasons. So, keep “left” and continue descending.
The trail eventually levels and you’ll hike across grassy pastures along a loamy track. As you hike towards the Pala peaks, the trail ascends gently and then makes a wide-berth around Costazza, which looks like a grassy hill.
The trail joins a flat, gravel track. Continue wrapping clockwise around Costazza. Soon, you’ll arrive at Baita Segantini. As you progress, you’ll see a serpentine road snaking its way up the Val Venegia valley. The photography options are endless.
Sunset at Baita Segantini
Just beyond the Baita Segantini mountain hut, there’s a small lake. In the early afternoon, this lake looks like a murky pig’s bath. At golden hour and sunset, this brown lake transforms into an enchanting reflection pool.
You’ll see a line of photographers with tripods here, all eager to capture the magic of Pale di San Martino at sunset. From this perspective, the oval-shaped Mount Mulaz forms the backdrop of Baita Segantini.
Just before sunset, the Pale mountains light up in saturated hues of yellow and orange, burning like flames. A few minutes later, the peaks turn rose and violet. And then, far too quickly, the light goes out, and it looks like someone blew out the candles. Sunset at Baita Segantini is an unforgettable experience.
The best places to watch the sunset are directly at the lake, facing Baita Segantini, or at the top of Costazza.
Baita Segantini to Pass Rolle (40 minutes)
After sunset, follow the gravel road to Rifugio Capanna Cervino and then down to the parking lot. There’s also a more direct footpath that cuts across the slopes, which you can take as well.
You may want to bring headlamps for the descent.
Passo Rolle to Baita Segantini Hiking Map
Where to Stay in San Martino di Castrozza
The best place to stay for this hike is San Martino di Castrozza. This resort town is a mere 15-minute drive from Passo Rolle. We stayed in an apartment because we wanted maximum flexibility. We love hotels in the Dolomites, but we didn’t want to schedule our day around meals.
Budget | Residence Taufer is an affordable apartment-style accommodation, located 1 km from the center of San Martino di Castrozza. Apartments are clean and fully equipped, with all necessary appliances to make your stay here comfortable. The check-in/out is easy and uncomplicated. There’s a welcoming bar downstairs, where you can order espresso, drinks, and snacks throughout the day. And, the views of the Pala Group are sublime!
Mid-Range | Residence Langes is a top-rated apartment-hotel in the center of San Martino di Castrozza. Apartments are spacious, clean, and functional and have fully equipped kitchens. Guests love soaking in the outdoor whirlpool facing Pale di San Martino. There’s also a hotel bar on the ground floor.
Mid-Range | San Martino Mountain Residence is a new and modern aparthotel (8 apartments only) in a quiet area of San Martino di Castrozza (15-minute walk to the center). Apartments are thoughtfully designed and stocked with all necessary amenities. Guests have access to an outdoor whirlpool, Finnish sauna, hotel bar, sun terrace, and garden. Breakfast is available for 6 EUR per person if booked the day before.
For a more traditional hotel set-up, check out Hotel Colbricon Beauty & Relax.
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Learn More about the Pale di San Martino Dolomites:
- Val Venegia to Rifugio Mulaz Circuit Hike
- Rifugio Rosetta to Rifugio Pradidali Circuit Hike
- Cima della Vezzana Summit Hike
- Top Things to Do in San Martino di Castrozza
Plan your trip to the Dolomites:
More Hiking Trails in the Dolomites: