Shortly before the First World War, an Italian and an Austrian mountain guides take part in a mountaineering expedition together. Not long afterwards they find themselves fighting on different sides in the same area in the Dolomites, fighting to conquer the same high pass (Col Alto). When the war is over, they meet again. Their friendship has survived the war. There are two other versions of the film. One was shot in french the same year as the original (Les monts en flammes). The other, shot in english the year after, was produced by the american Universal Pictures (The doomed battalion). Both uses scenes from the original german version.