Great parts of the Rieserferner Group, or Vedrette di Ries, are situated on South Tyrolean territory, a small area, however, belongs to East Tyrol in Austria and forms the High Tauern.
Although the Rieserferner Group makes up a small part of the Central Alps, this area is an eldorado for experienced alpinists and climbers in summer, due to the ragged and striking mountain peaks, and for ski tourers in winter. The name of the Rieserferner Group derives from the homonymous glacier on the northern slope of the mountain group, located between Mt. Collalto (its highest peak with 3,436 m a.s.l.) and Mt. Nevoso (3,358 m a.s.l.), both situated entrambi situate al confine tra l’Italia e l’Austria at the border between Austria and Italy.
The Rieserferner Group, along with the Ankogel Group, Goldberg Group, Glockner Group, Schober Group, Kreuzeck Group, Granatspitze Group, Venediger Group and the Villgraten Mountains, form the High Tauern. Most of the highest peaks of Austria can be found in this 120 km long alpine region. In the High Tauern there’s also the High Tauern National Park, the largest protected area of Austria and the entire Alps.
The boundaries of the mountain group are formed by the Passo Gola mountain pass in the north, while the east boundary passes from the Rio Arvental to the Jagdhausalm mountain pasture. In the south, however, it passes from the Passo Stalle mountain pass at 2,052 m a.s.l. along the Valle di Anterselva valley to the village of Valdaora in the Val Pusteria. The foothills of the Rieserferner Group reach the town of Brunico. Parts of it are protected in the Vedrette di Ries-Aurina Nature Park which stretches into the Valle Aurina valley.
Highest peak: Collalto (3,436 m a.s.l.), first ascent in 1868 by K. Hoffmann, V. Kaltendorff and the alpine guides G. Weiss and H. Oberarzbacher from Riva di Tures
Major mountains: Mt. Nevoso, Mt. Collaspro, Mt. Sassolungo di Collalto, Mt. Cima del Vento Grande
Area: South Tyrol (Italy) and East Tyrol (Austria)