The day hike to the Rifugio Stevia mountain hut and the Col dala Pieres (also written Col dla Pieres) summit is one of the finest hiking tours in the Italian Dolomites.

While most people visiting Val Gardena make a beeline for the Seceda Ridgeline, only a few know about this exciting alternative in Puez-Odle Nature Park.

This hike delivers mesmerizing views of Sassolungo/Langkofel, Sella Group, and the famous Odle/Geisler peaks from an entirely fresh perspective. 

Rifugio Stevia and Col dala Pieres Day Hike

Val Gardena Day Hike - Rifugio Stevia to Col dala Pieres Circuit
  • Trailhead: Col Raiser Gondola Mountain Station
  • Distance: 13.7 km loop
  • Difficulty: Difficult
  • Highest Point: Col dala Pieres (2747 m)
  • Elevation Gain / Loss: 1220 meters ascending/descending 
  • Time Needed: 6 -7 hours
  • Trails: 4, 3, 17b, 17, 2, 2-3, 4
  • Route: Col Raiser Top Station (2106 m) – Rifugio Firenze (2037 m) – Forcella Piza (2489 m) – Rifugio Stevia (2312 m) – Forcella Piza (2489 m) – Col dala Pieres (2747 m) – Forcella Forces de Sieles (2505 m) – Rifugio Firenze (2037 m) – Col Raiser Top Station (2106 m). 
  • Where to Stay: Selva di Val Gardena, or Santa Cristina in Val Gardena, South Tyrol.

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Col dala Pieres Hiking Map

Recommended Hiking Gear for Col dala Pieres 

We recommend wearing a sturdy pair of hiking boots, preferably grade B/C like the women’s Hanwag Tatra II GTX / Meindl Schuhe Island Lady (what Kati and I wear) or the men’s Hanwag Tatra II GTX. Hiking poles are very helpful as well for this hike. We highly recommend these Black Diamond trail poles

Other hiking essentials: a reusable water bottle, polarized Cat 4 sunglasses, rain jacket, sunhat, and camera. We love our Sony Alpha A6000 mirrorless digital camera. It’s lightweight, easy to hike with, and captures landscapes beautifully. 

When to Hike to Rifugio Stevia and Col dala Pieres

When to hike to Rifugio Stevia and Col dala Pieres, Val Gardena, Dolomites
Trail 2

Early June to mid-October. Time your visit with the Col Raiser gondola summer operating times. The Col Raiser gondola is generally open from late May until mid-October.

Without the gondola ascent and descent, this hike would be impossibly long (at least 11 hours). 

Getting to the Rifugio Stevia Trailhead

By Car. The hike begins at the Col Raiser gondola top station. If you’re traveling by car, drive to the Col Raiser valley station in Selva, Val Gardena. There’s a large parking lot with 217 spaces. 

By Bus. If you’re traveling by transit, you can reach Col Raiser by bus. From other destinations in Val Gardena, take bus 350 or bus 471 to the Dosses stop in Santa Cristina. Read this Val Gardena bus schedule for more help. From Dosses, you can hop on a free shuttle that runs between Santa Christina and the Col Raiser valley station in the morning, from 8:30 am to 12 pm, when the chairlift is operating. 

Col Raiser Gondola Prices

When you get to the valley station, purchase a round-trip ticket. In Summer 2019, the price was 20 EUR for a round-trip ticket for adults and 14 EUR for a round-trip ticket for kids (ages 6-13). If you’re an Alpine Club Member, show your card, and you’ll receive a 1 EUR discount. 

Rifugio Stevia and Col dala Pieres Trail Description

Col Raiser Top Station to Rifugio Firenze/Regensburger Hütte (25 minutes)

Regensburger Hütte (Rifugio Firenze), Val Gardena, Dolomites
Regensburger Hütte / Rifugio Firenze

Starting at the Col Raiser gondola top station, you’ll hike 25 minutes to Regensburger Hütte, a lovely mountain refuge in Puez-Odle Nature Park. This easy path is ever-so-slightly downhill. 

Rifugio Firenze to Forcella Piza/Pizascharte (1 hour)

At Rifugio Firenze, the signpost indicates 2 hours to Rifugio Stevia and 2.5 hours to Col dala Pieres. 

Walk across the outdoor terrace of Rifugio Firenze and follow the wide gravel path downhill. As you slowly descend along trail 3, enjoy the views of Langkofel.

Rifugio Stevia Day Hike, Val Gardena, Dolomites, Italy
Trail 3 leading from Rifugio Firenze

Keep your eyes out for 17B, a narrow trail that cuts left into the forest. You’ll take 17B all the way to Forcella Piza (Pizascharte, Furcela Piza), the saddle between Muntejela (2643 m) and Mont De Stevia (2555 m).

The ascent to Forcella Piza takes an hour. 17B initially leads gently uphill through the forest. When you clear the treeline, the path continues to ascend towards a rock wall (Muntejela and Mont De Stevia).

The final stretch to the mountain pass traverses a scree slope, which is secured by wooden logs made into steps. 

Trail 17B to Forcella Piza (Pizascharte, Furcela Piza), Val Gardena Dolomites
Trail 17B to Forcella Piza

Forcella Piza to Rifugio Stevia (20 minutes)

When you get to the Piza saddle, you can head left directly to the Col dala Pieres summit, or right to Rifugio Stevia (Stevia Hütte / Ütia de Stevia).

Even though you’ll have to backtrack to this very point to continue the hike, we recommend detouring to Rifugio Stevia for lunch, or just a drink. It takes about 20 minutes to walk down to the mountain refuge. The views of Sassolungo (Langkofel), the Sella Group, and Cir Peaks are just fabulous. 

Trail to Rifugo Stevia, Val Gardena, Italian Dolomites
Trail to Rifugo Stevia

Rifugio Stevia to Col dala Pieres (1:30 hours)

From the hut, head back the way you came and continue along Trail 17. At the Piza saddle, the sign indicates 1 hour to Col dala Pieres (2747 m). Following the ridgeline, the ascent to Col dala Pieres is very moderate. In every direction, peaks and ridgelines create a multi-layered masterpiece. 

Hike to Col dala Pieres and Rifugio Stevia in Val Gardena, Italian Dolomites
Cir Peaks and Sella Group

Col dala Pieres to Forcella Forces de Sieles (45 minutes)

Approaching Forcella Forces de Sieles, Val Gardena
Approaching Forcella Forces de Sieles

From the summit of Col dala Pieres, the trail continues along the mountain ridge, gifting you glorious views of the spikey Odle (Geisler) peaks. The level trail will eventually dip over the ridge at the saddle Forcella Forces de Sieles (2505 m). This section is quite steep.

Forcella Forces de Sieles to Rifugio Firenze (1 hour)

Geisler / Odle Peaks, Puez - Odle Nature Park, Val Gardena
View of Geiser (Odle) Peaks along Trail 2

In dry conditions, the descent from Forcella Forces de Sieles isn’t overly difficult. There are some ropes to aid your passage through tricky areas. But, as long as you have sturdy boots and hiking poles, it’s NBD. If you don’t have alpine hiking experience, forget what I said. Depending on your experience, this can be difficult. 

When you get to level ground, continue along trail 2 in the direction of the Geisler peaks. The long stretch to Rifugio Firenze is spellbinding. The Odle (Geisler) peaks steal the show with their brilliant dagger-like formation. 

Trail 2, Val Gardena Dolomites, Odle / Geisler Peaks

Rifugio Firenze to Col Raiser Top Station (20 minutes)

Take the exact route that you took coming here. The Col Raiser chairlift closes at 5:30 p.m., so unless you want to descend another 900 meters, try to catch it. 

Read Next: Best Day Hikes in the Dolomites

Where to Stay in Val Gardena

We recommend staying in Selva di Val Gardena, or in Santa Cristina for this hike. Here are some great hotel options:

Hotel Rodella in Selva di Val Gardena

Hotel Rodella is a mid-range accommodation situated above Selva di Val Gardena. We loved watching the sunset from the hotel; it almost feels like you have VIP tickets to the Sella and Langkofel burning Dolomites show. Furthermore, the rooms are comfortable and filled with light. And, the location couldn’t be more convenient, as it’s walking distance to Col Raiser Cable Car.

Book your stay at Hotel Rodella.

Look for accommodation in Selva di Val Gardena.

Dorthotel Beludei in Santa Cristina, Val Gardena

This 4-star hotel serves visionary cuisine. When I say this is the best place to eat in Val Gardena, I mean this is THE BEST PLACE TO EAT IN VAL GARDENA. Dorfhotel Beludeidazzled us with its spa area, luxurious rooms, and professional staff.

Book your stay at Dorfhotel Beludei.

Look for accommodation in Santa Cristina.

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