The Velo della Madonna Hut is the most recent refuge in the Trentino mountains to be built by SAT, the association of Trentino mountaineers, and the second to be erected in the Pale di S. Martino by the association, which has been the proprietor of the more famous Rosetta Refuge for over one hundred years.

The Velo della Madonna Refuge is located on a rocky terrace at the foot of the lofty Cima della Madonna (2752 m) overlooking the Valle del Cismon. Its name was inspired by the Spigolo del Velo, one of the finest classic climbs in the Dolomites: 440 m of excellent, exposed rock on the north-west arête, scaled for the first time in 1920 by G. Langes and E. Merlet.

Before building the new Refuge in the Cadinot coombe, in 1966 the Primiero – S. Martino di Castrozza Branch of SAT had erected a 10-person bivouac Hut.  Click here to download the History of the “Spigolo del Velo” (PDF),  an article taken from the 24th July 1966 Issue of the CAI – SAT Bulletin marking the inauguration of the Velo Bivouac.

The Velo della Madonna Hut was inaugurated on 21st September 1980, and is located at a point where numerous, interesting mountain routes converge: as well as the above-mentioned Spigolo, there is the normal route on Cima della Madonna, a distinctly alpine climb, around grade II and III, the red markers making it easy to  follow the route opened by G. Winkler and A. Zott in 1886. Next to Cima della Madonna is Sass Maor (2812 m) and another enjoyable grade I and II scramble up the chimney between the two peaks, first scaled by H.A. Beacheroff, C.C. Tucker, B. Della Santa and F. Devouassoud in 1875 as they were making the first ascent of the peak.

There are also several cable-aided paths running from the valley up to the Velo della Madonna Refuge, including one dedicated to the famous italian writer, Dino Buzzati, and a more recent one dedicated to the mountain guide Camillo De Paoli; the “Velo” and “Porton” via ferrata climbings are also a means of getting to the Pradidali refuge.