One of the most majestic and well-known views of the Dolomites, maybe second only to the Three Peaks of Lavaredo, is the Pale of San Martino, the most extensive group of peaks of all the Dolomites, with some mountains that rise above three thousand meters; they form a real circular crown that encloses the Pale plateau, a place with unique, intense and lunar scenarios, characterized by the rocky limestone rock with a constant altitude between 2500 and 2700 meters.
To reach the famous peaks that make up the Pale, with names known as Vezzana, Cimon della Pala, Rosetta, Sass Maor and Agner, take the road that leads from Fiera di Primiero to San Martino di Castrozza, and here you can opt for different routes and itineraries, from the easiest to the most demanding with very difficult via ferratas, to discover the unique atmosphere of the plateau and the surrounding peaks. For climbers, this place certainly recalls the pioneers of modern climbing, and there are many in fact the classic routes found on the walls of the Pale, such as the Buhl on the Cima Canali. Starting from one of the mountain huts located in the area, like the Canali-Treviso, Giovanni Pedrotti or Mulaz, the routes are really close at hand, after a short approach.
The Pale Plateau, once found, excites for the complexity of the walk, forcing many deviations and ascents to avoid fractures in the rock. The particular nature of the place impressed the mountaineers who first arrived there at the end of the nineteenth century, and Dino Buzzati, a refined and pungent journalist and writer as well as an avid mountaineer, wanted to immortalize this plateau in the pages of his book, the masterpiece of Il Deserto dei Tartari (The Tartars’ Desert).
In addition to the summer routes to reach the peaks, the Pale of San Martino is a popular destination even in winter, thanks to the numerous ski lifts and simple connections to the Civetta and Agordino area.