13028 feet/3971 meters
Lombardia/Graubünden (Bernina), Italy/Switzerland, Europe
Last update: April 15th, 2002
© Copyright by
Rahel Maria Liu
Biancograt to Piz Bernina (left), Piz Scerscen (middle), Piz Roseg
(right) (August 2001)
© Copyright by
Rahel Maria Liu
During a long time the Piz Scerscen
(pronounced: cherchen) did not have any name because it has been seen
as part of Piz Bernina. But indeed it is a big massif on its
own with rock on the south (italian) side and firn and ice
on the north (swiss) side. It goes from SW to NE, from the Porta da
Roseg to the Bernina. On the swiss map, the Piz Scerscen is marked with
3781m: The first rock tower between Porta da
Roseg and P. 3875.
P. 3875: The 'Schneehaube' with its little white
firn cap, which is immediately noticed from people watching from the
swiss side. The rock ridge has become a firn ridge.
3971m (SAC)/3967 m (
Vanis ): This main summit is a free located rock tower, seen from
the Piz Bernina.
3954m: This E-summit is reached from the main
summit via a small, almost horizontal ridge.
3895m: On this point is a widely visible tower,
which is located in the Fuorcla Scerscen, a saddle, to which the
ridge has been going down.
The ascents from the swiss side are altogether in firn and ice and
quite difficult, especially the N-flank with its hanging glaciers,
which falls down with ice faces and ice breaks to
the Vadret da Tschierva. The ascents from the italian side
are mostly rockclimbs.
The Piz Scerscen got its name when people become interested in the
icenose. It was climbed for the first time in summer 1877 (22th of
Septemer) by Paul Güßfeld with the guides Graß and
Capat. It got directly famous and is a standard ice tour till today.
The nose is a ice break of the huge high firn plateau. In 1870, Heim
and Güßfeld measured an absolute height of 60 meters. Ulrich
Wieland, one of the most famous ice climbers of the 1930s estimated 100
meters in 1929, 30 m of it with 90°. Other people even estimated it
still higher and as overhang. Erich Vanis, who climbed it 1958,
thought, that it was abou 50 to 60 meters high and with an average
steepness of about 50°. The main reason why it has been estimated
easier in later times is probably the advance of technical aid
(crampons and ice screws) which lets the climbers belief that it is not
as difficult as the first climbers thought.
A. From the swiss side:
2. NW-ascent ('Eisnase'/icenose):
- SS, 8-10h from Tschiervahut (today
scarcely ever climbed and not recommendable, even not as descent when
having climbed up the icenose) (SAC)
- S, 6-7h from Tschiervahut (SAC)
- 700 hm (face), 40°-45°, at the icenose
till 60° (1-2 rope lengths), 3-4 h (from the Fuorcla da l'Umur) (
B. From the italian side
- SS, 8-10h from the
- ZS, III-IV, 6-8 h from Rif.
- ZS, III-IV, 7-8h from Rif.
7. Traverse from SW to NO (Piz
- ZS, 6-8 h from Rif. Marinelli
- S, III-IV, 6-8 h from Porta da
1. To the Piz Scerscen:
2. To the Tschiervahütte:
- a. You come from the Tschiervahütte: cross
the glacier with direction to the W-foot of Piz Umur, from there you go
the steeper snowflank up and on the glacier along the west side of Piz
- b. You come from the Rif. Marinelli.
- You reach the hut from Pontresina: on foot
(1h), by mountainbike (to rent at Roseg-inn) or with coach (reservation
by phone necessary!) to the Roseg-Inn (1999) in Roseg
valley. You only have to follow the wide road.
- From Roseg-Inn, you cross the river via a
bridge and go along the river till the way goes up over the hangs. You
follow the way all the time and reach in 2 h the Tschiervahütte.
- You reach Pontresina by train or car on the
road no. 29 from Samedan. You reach Samedan on the road no.
27 either from the NE (Zernez, via road no. 28 from Davos in the N or
from Bozen in the E) or from the SW from St.
Moritz. To St. Moritz a few kilometers on the road no. 27
from Silvaplana (and the Lago di Como). To Silvaplana,
you can come also from the N from Chur on the road no. 3. To Chur: On
the A13 from the N from the Bodensee.
When To Climb
Summer (june to september)
Camping and/or Accomodation
There is a camping ground in
Morteratsch, 10 min. by train from Pontresina.
1. From the swiss side:
Tschiervahütte (2580 m):
2. From the italian side: Rif. Marinelli
Mountain Conditions and General Information
1. GENERAL INFOS:
- Coacher (for reservation): 0041/81/8426057
- Roseg-Inn: 0041/81/8426445
- Touristinfo (Pontresina): 0041/81/8388300
1:25000 no. 1277 Piz Bernina
(1:25000 no. 1257 St. Moritz)
1:50000 no. 268 Julierpaß
to order at
Alpen, Vol. 5 (Bernina-Gruppe)
Vanis , Im steilen Eis. Munich 1980.
Flaig , DAV-Gebietsführer: Berninagruppe. 11.th ed.