Manganu Pietra Piana_technical parts/advices?


Posted: Mon, Jun 29, 2020, 12:43


I am planning to join friends for 3 days of GR20 from Stage 6-8 in late July as below.

- Ciottulu di i Mori-Manganu,
- Manganu-Pietra Piana,
- Pietra Piana-Vizzavona.

Manganu-Pietra Piana seems pretty hard and I saw/read there are some technical sections (one with chain, at Breche du Capitello).

I’m training myself, but I suffer from vertigo and I do not have experience with “technical parts” on the mountain and climbing.

1. Does the Breche du Capitello require technical abilities?
Is the part with the chain particularly long and really steep – requiring “actual” climbing?

2. Is there a way to skip the part using the chain?

3. Is there an alternative low trail from Manganu to Pietra Piana?


Posted: Mon, Jun 29, 2020, 14:31

I have to wonder how you are getting to Ciottulu di i Mori as there isn't any road access and it's almost 2000m in altitude. It seems a strange place to start.

1 It's steep rock, but not too long, and there are plenty of hand and footholds. I was there one time and the chain was missing and it wasn't a problem. It's not vertical rock and certainly not rock climbing, but take it carefully as you'll hurt yourself badly if you fall. The chain was there last summer, but it's not essential. Just hold onto it if you want to, otherwise hold onto the rock.

2 No you can't skip it. If you try to skip it you'll just end up on steeper rock with no chain.

3 No - you would end up adding days of walking. Just remember that thousands of people negotiate the Brēche every summer without any problems. If you have a problem with vertigo then there are a number of places that you might worry about but they should all be possible if you have some support from your friends.


Posted: Tue, Jun 30, 2020, 7:48

Thanks a lot for your reply.

Apologies, it is true, I was not very precise on the above: we are planning to go at Castel de Vergio by car and meet with other friends who are coming from Ciottolu di i Mori (as they are doing all GR20 North). Hope this makes more sense to you.

And thanks for the info: it is somehow “reassuring”.
I’m trying to “assess” potential difficulties in the trekking due to my vertigo issues; for this “chain part” it was really not clear to me and somehow "scary" as perspective/impression can change a lot in the videos depending by camera and framing.

I also think there will be some other parts not totally suitable for vetrigo, but I agree that being in company helps.


Posted: Tue, Jun 30, 2020, 9:51

If you check this video at the 12 minute mark, you'll see the chain at the Brēche. It looks scary, but if you look carefully, you'll see that the camera has been tilted to make it look steeper than it really is. A few seconds later, you'll see some steep, bare rock nearby that might also be a problem for you. Note that the video runs south to north, so everything will be reversed for you going north to south.