Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Maritime Alps Tour Day 10: Vallone del Gesso della Valletta -> Lago inf. di Valscura

Another blue cloudless sky in the morning. No breakfast sun for us due to mountain configuration issues. :-) We're underway by 8:45. We start by repeating yesterday evening's post-dinner stroll and heading up to the Rif. Regina Elena and then set out, slightly climbing, towards the other side of the valley and the path up to the Laghi di Fremamorta. The path is broad and easy to walk, genly ascending in switchbacks. Cool breezes, nice views all around, good climbing.
Up the side of the Vallone de Gesso della Valletta
After a while of this the switchbacks start to get a bit tiresome and we both want to do the climbing faster. This frustration is blunted temporarily by the discovery of a big patch of blueberries; we put the hike on hold for a good blueberry and water break. Continuing on we do the switchbacks ad infinitum and then we're up top. nice energy bar break looking out over the biggest lake (2371m) and the rock walls behind it, then we continue on the old military road past the other lakes.
On the military road past one of the lakes. Route in front nicely visible.
Up here we see the first people of the day (aside from the two who passed our tent site towards the Rif. Remondio at 6:30). Past the lakes and then a slow descent on the road into the next valley.

Lunch break at a crossroads with nice views across the valley to the beginning of tomorrow's hike. Some more people passing, and then the slow, gradual climb to the Rif. Emilio Questa. At the crossroads below the hut we make the difficult (but seemingly logical) decision not to walk up to the hut and then back the same way and continue on without a cool beverage. Some 15 minutes later this decision is proven to be based on false assumptions as we intersect another, higher, path from the hut. Oh well... We continue on to the Lago del Claus, which is really attractive (and even has islands!).
Island in Lago del Claus
Onward, onward, along the old royal hunting path, through a really impressive stretch that looks like a nice fieldstone wall laid on its side, real craftsmanship.
Order from chaos: a really beautiful stretch of the old royal hunting path.
On we go until we reach the day's goal: the Lagho inf. di Valscura. We ditch the packs, scout around, do some laundry, pump some water, have a rest, have some tea, and start to settle in. Oh... wind... strongish, coldish wind... not good! Let's find a more sheltered spot! We scout around some more, move the stuff, pitch the tent, make the dinner, tidy up, take a walk, and write the log.

No sunset tonight: there are just too many clouds in the way. Also: we forgot to do the tent site photo, doh!

Dinner: Soup: potato leek with dumpling enrichment. Main: soy bolognese with tomato zucchini soup, mystery spice mix (something I made a couple years ago that was in with the backpacking kitchen stuff), and polenta.

Approximate stats: 11.0 km, 1086m up, 625m down

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