Valgrande National Park – the largest wilderness area in Italy
Val Grande: the largest wilderness area in Italy, but also an outdoor museum of the ancient civilization of the Alps. The abandonment of the alpine summer pastures and of the deforestation practice led to the return to wilderness: nature becomes the master. The richness and variety of the vegetation represent one of the greatest attractions of the area, with impenetrable woods and a “very colored” flora. A Park with many secrets: timid animals, steep deep valleys, crystal-clear waters in gorges protected by overhanging walls, and charming views, from Mt. Rosa to Lago Maggiore.
There are minimal amenities available during the trek, therefore a good sense of adaption and collaboration is necessary.
Duration: 4 days
Departure: june - september
Price: 380,00 eur per person
- accommodation (3 nights) in mountain huts
- FB – breakfasts and dinners in mountain huts, 2 packed lunches
- english speaking guide for the whole tour
- train & transfers from Domodossola (from other locations prices on request)
- costs of transportation for getting to Domodossola
- anything not mentioned under “the price includes”
Finero – Bocchetta di Terza – Pian di Boit
The hiking route begins from the old village of Provola and goes up along the torrent Il Fiume among a shady beechwood. After one and a half-hour walk you ascend the steep slope up to the panoramic pass Bocchetta di Terza from where you can have a spectacular view over the mountains and the valleys of the area of the Park. If you are lucky, you will also get to see chamois and birds of prey. After a short stop to eat your packed lunch, the path goes down the grass-slope till the alp “Alpe Terza” and continues through a thick beech-wood to the destination site: the alp “Pian di Boit”.
Dinner and overnight at the hut of the Valgrande Cooperative at the Alpe Pian di Boit. The hut for the hikers is a bivouac and has a simple sleeping room with mattresses put on a wooden floor and a big kitchen/dining room with a fireplace. No toilets in the hut. A good sense of adaptation and of collaboration is required. The dinner will be cooked together with a vegetarian menu based on organic food. The sources of energy used during the stay are mainly renewable ones. In fact the hut is heated by a wood-stove and has a solar panel for the small amount of energetic supply.
Alpe Pian di Boit – Pogallo– Cicogna – Alpe Velina
After a rich breakfast in the hut you will descend along the Rio Pianezzoli and you will reach the historical alp of Pogallo full of stories of mountain dwellers, woodcutters and partisans. From Pogallo along the historical “via Sutermeister” bordering the gorge of the torrent “Rio Pogallo” you will reach the village of Cicogna, the “capital” of the Val Grande National Park. If the weather is good and hot you can dive into the emerald-coloured waters and take the advantage of stopping to enjoy your packed lunch.
After a short visit of Cicogna you will continue the exploration of the Val Grande in the valley of the torrent “Val Grande” passing old abandoned alps, once rich in vineyards and orchards. As soon as you have reached the Alps of Velina in Baserga locality, Piero will welcome you in the hut of the Association “Tre Veline” and he will tell stories about his life in strict contact with nature. Dinner and overnight at the hut of Baserga.
Alpe Velina– Corte Bue’– Alpe Ompio
After breakfast you will leave Piero and the alp Velina and you will descend to the bridge which crosses over the torrent “Val Grande”. The steep slope leads you to the alp Corte Bué where you will stop and enjoy your packed lunch in front of the magnificent view of the Monte Pedum in the very protected area of the Park. You will have a glance of the ruins of the huts which speak about the history of this alp, where nowadays there are the bivouacs of the Association “Gruppo escursionistico Val Grande”. You will continue the hike bordering the north slope of the Pizzo Faié until you will reach the hut of CAI Fantoli situated at the Alpe Ompio. The dinner with local food will be served while admiring the sunset on Lake Maggiore.
Alpe Ompio – Bracchio – Mergozzo - Fondotoce
After a coffee with a nice view over Lake Maggiore you will go down to the village of Bracchio through a vegetation of chestnut trees while enjoying some glances over the small lake of Mergozzo. Leaving the wild nature of the Park behind, the lively sounds of the village of Mergozzo, which is one of the most appreciated destinations of lake tourists, remind you of civilization.
After a refreshing stop with the possibility of swimming in the waters of the small lake and of enjoying a pizza or sandwich in one of the lively pizzeria / café of the village, you will continue the hike along the “sentiero azzurro” to the railway station of Verbania Fondotoce. The arrival is foreseen around 16h00.