I slept much better the second night at Rifugio Vajolet. Maybe the single malt whisky after dinner on the second day had something to do with it? :)
By 9 o’clock I was on the ascend towards Passo Coronelle (Tschagerjoch, 2630m), which would take me over to the west-facing side of Rosengarten’s main ridge. The ascend was a little precarious, on a relatively steep slope with lots of loose gravel. Around 10 o’clock I reached the pass, which is really just a narrow notch in the rock. The views, mostly to the west and east, are wonderful, and it was a clear blue day, almost free from haze as well. The absence of clouds made the light quite hard of course.
Descending on the western side of Rosengarten from Passo Coronelle to Kölner Hütte (Rifugio Alessandro Fronza alle Coronelle) was a little bit sad because it meant leaving the more secluded areas of the Vajolet Valley on the eastern side behind me. It was a little bit early for lunch when I arrived at Kölner Hütte so I just had some snacks and a coffee before I continued on the Hirzelweg trail, which leads to and around the southern end of Rosengarten. It was a Saturday and in the late morning, this popular trail was becoming really crowded – large groups of people, loudly chatting, stopping in the middle of the trail and blocking it – the previous two days were definitely more to my liking. :)
From the southern tip of Rosengarten I hiked back down to Karerpass where I had started. On the way down to Welschnofen I stopped at Karersee (Lago di Carezza) – a picturesque lake with the Latemar massif as a backdrop. It is astonishingly beautiful, and incredibly busy because it is accessible right from the street. A large parking lot provides enough space for busloads of tourists and souvenir shops. As you can imagine, I didn’t stay there too long, but soon continued the drive down to Bozen (Bolzano) and the freeway back home…