Monday, September 26, 2016

Swiss-Italian Border Hike Day 3: Crampiolo to Alpe Veglia

After a surprisingly good breakfast (clearly catering to the typical customer) we head off under blue skies (though not yet in the sun) towards the Lago delle Streghe (Lake of the Witches). This turns out to be a very pretty small lake in the woods with some nice mirroring of the surroundings. Around the lake through the woods we go and the slightly down to Alpe Devero. Here we walk around the huge field, half moor half pasture, and through a small herd of cows  to the small cluster of houses at Piedimonte. Here we turn up into the woods and start climbing. Up, up we go, now in the sun, past a cluster of buildings at Buscagna, past a shepherd with a big herd of goats, along a high valley (oh the views!), up another step and past a group of three hikers to the next high valley (oh the views!), along the valley and through a herd of cows to the end and then up, up to little tower above the pass Scatta d'Orogna.

Here we find a reasonably wind sheltered spot to eat lunch, greet the group of three hikers as they go by, and then head off again when the wind and the shade gets to be too much (the sun is unfortunately behind clouds part of the time now). The path now leads us down, around a small hanging valley, and then around a nose into the next valley. This is a great piece of path: narrow, high above the valley floor with cliffs towering above, secured with chains at one point, very very nice.

In the Passo di Valtendra we see another big herd of goats (no shepherd this time) and bid the views behind us goodbye before turning down the other side. The views aren't quite as good since the clouds are a bit low and the sun is mostly gone. Now a nice path through rocks leading us down, down, down to the next step. Here we pass the three Germans again and then head down to the next step. Across and down, now in the woods. It'd probably be really nice in the sun, but shadowed at the end of a long day this stage starts to drag on a bit. After a final bit of descent we hit Alpe Veglia and our hotel, which would have awesome views of the Monte Leone if the clouds weren't so low. We settle in, have a cool beverage, shower, nap, have a very good meal (yay! Polenta!), and then head off to bed after a bit of stargazing.


Stats: 17.0km, 1001m up, 1029m down, 7:05

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