The Orco Valley (Valle dell' Orco) is located in the Gran Paradiso National Park, which is situated to the north of Turin and west of Milan. This valley is famous for its granite crack climbing, which is said to be the best in the Western European Alps.
The epic big walls of Sergent, Caporal and the Torre di Aimonin provide long multi-pitch Trad routes, which can accessed with minimal walk-ins. The style of climbing involves plenty of splitter cracks, delicate slabs and some excellent face climbs across a wide range of grades. Generally the routes are well protected using trad gear such as cams and nuts, though the majority of the delays are bolted. Hence it is easy to retreat from routes if the weather closes in.
There are also many single pitch sport routes that line both sides of the valley around the villages of Ceresole Reale, Locana, and Sparone. This makes it easy to find the sun or shade depending upon the time of the year. The bouldering scene is growing as there are many boulders that litter the valley floor, particularly around the main campsite.
Best time to climb? The best time to rock climbing in the Orco Valley is from late May through to early October.
How to get there? The best approach to Orco is to fly into Milan or Turin airport and hire a car. Most climbers stay at the camp site in the main valley.