Lake Denza and Presanella hanging glacier

Activity time
Durata in ore
Distance in km
An excursion which is of geological, natural and glaciological interest, a scenic and panoramic sight of the harsh but striking north face of the Presanella.
A striking trail, which will remain, impressed in your memory for its majestic location, characterised by glaciers, alpine lakes gravel pits and snow covered gorges. On reaching Rifugio Denza, following the «German Path» you will do a full circle passing Lake Denza.

Route info

11.5 km
Activity time
6:16 h.
Uphill Elevation
1205 m
Downhill elevation
1267 m
Technical skills
Physical effort
Highest point
2665 m
Lowest point
1856 m
Height difference
809 m


APT Valli di Sole, Peio e Rabbi


We recommend doing this excursion from the middle of May until the end of June, in order to be able to admire the wonderful view of Cima Presanella and the flowering and perfume of the beautiful Alpine Rhododendrums which characterise the area.

Safety information

The trail is well sign-posted with the red and white SAT signs with their relative number in black.

  • Choose a route which is suitable and in line with your preparation.
  • Leave information of your itinerary and approximate return time.
  • Pay attention to the signs and indications found on the way.
  • Do not hesitate to return if necessary.
  • In case of accident or emergency, call 118.

The information supplied can be subject to change or alteration, for this reason its value should not be taken as final. It is impossible to avoid any inaccuracy on inexactness, due to rapid climatic or environmental changes, which can take place without notice. We therefore accept no responsibility for any eventual alterations endured by the consumer. It is advised, however, to always check the weather and environmental conditions before any excursion.

Please note that the practicability of the itineraries in a mountain environment is strictly linked to the contingent conditions and is therefore influenced by natural phenomena, environmental changes and weather conditions. For this reason, the information contained in this page may have changed. Before leaving for a tour, make sure the path you will approach is still accessible by contacting the owner of the mountain hut, the alpine guides or the visitor centres of the nature parks, the info offices of the local tourist board.

Starting point

Pozzi Alti car park


E - Escursionistico (Hiker)

By car passing the village of Vermiglio in the direction of Velon you reach a junction and a recently repaired old military dirt road, which leads to the ex-fort Pozzi Alti (1.884m). The 6km long road is accessible without a permit. If you wish to walk this road instead of driving, take the SAT 233 which leads to the fort (1h 30mins), one of the original Austrian-Hungarian forts which defended Passo Tonale. From the car park take the SAT 233 which ascends slightly, cross the steep walls of the «Crozi di Stavel», the naturally carved paths on the side of the mountain and a short tunnel until the signpost indicating SAT 206 which ascends directly from Stavel. This brings you in Val Presanella, where the setting opens up and presents a magnificent view of the Cima Presanella: at this point continue along the SAT 206 in the direction of Rifugio Stavel «F.Denza» (2.298m) which is located directly beneath the north face of the Cima Presanella (3.558m) the highest mountain in Trentino.

The itinerary continues on the SAT 206 «Sentiero dei Tedeschi» which ascends to the Vedretta della Presanella (2.650m) along the slopes which arrive to the margin of the glacier. A position of great glacial interest. From here a descent towards Lago Denza until reaching the rifugio. It is possible to vary the route back by car without returning by way of the same path. Take the SAT 234, which ascends the vast basin hollowed by the rocks to Passo dei Pozzi Alti (2.650m), and which offers spectacular views towards Bernina and Vioz. Finally descend the north side, which at first is an open space before becoming quite bushy, and following an old mule-path dating back to the First World War and which leads to the car park at Pozzi Alti.

Public transportation

The Verona-Brennero line to Trento and from there take the local Trento-Malè-Mezzana line to Val di Sole, from where there is a bus connection to all the villages. For times visit

How to get there

Coming from the south take the A22 motorway and exit at Trento Nord. Coming from the north exit at S. Michele all’Adige. Continue in the direction of Cles, Val di Non, Val di Sole and Vermiglio.

Take the SS42 to Tonale and Vermiglio.

Once in Vermiglio follow the signs to Velon. Straight after the Hotel Baita Velon take the dirt road to the ex Forte Pozzi Alti.

Where to park

Pozzi Alti car park (6 km from Vermiglio)
Waterproof clothing, both lightweight but warm (1st layer, in contact with the skin should be in polypropylene, 2nd layer insulating wool, and a 3rd waterproof layer such as an anorak in goretex or nylon, and long trousers) gloves, walking shoes (Not trainers) and a hat. A change of clothes, rucksack.
Caution in the mountains