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Recommend some trails in Italy?
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Ashley Brown
(ashleyb) - F
Recommend some trails in Italy? on 09/01/2009 20:41:34 MDT Print View

Next month I'll be in Italy with my GF for a few weeks and we're looking for a couple of good hiking trails.

We're not entirely sure which region(s) we are visiting yet, since it partly depends on where we want to hike. But chances are we will be visiting Tuscany, maybe Sicily, possibly the lakes region. We'd probably only go to the lakes region if there was a great hike we wanted to do though.

So any suggestions? Anything from 2-4 days would be good. Unfortunately my GF insists we save some time for seeing the sights and not sleeping in a tent. Crazy, I know.

We both like a mix of alpine and forested/green areas. Anything with some nice views, beautiful isolated camping spots, and interesting things to explore would be great. My GF loves picking berries on the trail. On our last hike in France we ended up at a tiny hot spring in the middle of nowhere, which was awesome after 4 days on the trail.

Anyway, if you have any ideas let's hear them!

Cheers, A

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: Recommend some trails in Italy? on 09/02/2009 00:34:55 MDT Print View

Hi Ashley

There's an Italian start to the Via Alpina starting at Trieste I think and going N to Switzerland. Some of that might be interesting.
We're just back from doing the Swiss part of the Via Alpina.

PS: the raspberries, blackberries and wild strawberries were all luscious!

Edited by rcaffin on 09/02/2009 00:35:38 MDT.

Ashley Brown
(ashleyb) - F
Re: Re: Recommend some trails in Italy? on 09/02/2009 01:25:39 MDT Print View

Thanks Roger. Yes, I read a bit about the Via Alpina on the lighthiker blog a little while ago. The more alpine sections of that walk might be getting a little chilly by mid-October... but it is a looong walk, so no doubt there is plenty still to choose from.

I did the Tour de Mont Blanc about 5-6 years ago in October and it wasn't too cold at that time (though it was getting chilly).

I hope there are still a few berries left by the time we get there! Aren't those little wild strawberries bursting with flavour! Nothing like the farmed ones.

Woubeir (from Europe)
(Woubeir) - F - MLife
Re: Re: Re: Recommend some trails in Italy? on 09/02/2009 01:41:39 MDT Print View

Well, it entirely depends on where you are staying in Italy.
On the French/Italian side you got the Maritime Alps National Park which should be a mix of wild mountains with a mediterrenean flavor.
Up north you got the Mont Viso area which has some nice trails but it can be a bit rainy (during a trip we made overthere in the French Queryas, the only time we had rain was when crossed into Italy to circumvent the Mont Viso.
Further north is de Gran Paradiso National Park which is dominated by the Gran Paradiso itself en should house the largest population of ibex in Europe. Never bin there myself but it's on my list. BTW, camping is strictly forbidden overthere.
On the Swiss Italian side, there's the border with Swiss Wallis which shows the largest concentration of 4000 m peaks in the Alps. Beautifull from the Swiss side, I don't know exactly how it looks from the italian side but you got mountains overthere like the Matterhorn and the Monte Rosa. Further east, there's the lakes area (Como, ...). Then there are a number of smaller ranges like the Adamello, Ortler, etc ... And totally different than the rest are the Dolomites.

If you are able to get it somehow, the book "Walking in the Alps" from Kevin Reynolds (300 pages, publisher is Cicerone) gives a good overview of nearly all the mountain ranges in the Alps with a lot walking sugestions. For detailed descriptions, you would still need a detailed guide but it's a good start.

did you do the green and red part of the VA in Switzerland.

Ashley Brown
(ashleyb) - F
Re: Re: Re: Re: Recommend some trails in Italy? on 09/04/2009 04:07:27 MDT Print View

Thanks for your suggestions Tom. I'll see if I can get a hold of that book. Not sure whether we are going to actually end up going up into the Alps. We may just be in Tuscany and Sicily in the end. I guess we will end up going to some national parks and exploring whatever trails we can find. Hopefully there will be plenty to choose from.

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: Re: Re: Re: Recommend some trails in Italy? on 09/04/2009 16:42:27 MDT Print View

Hi Tom

Ah, yeah ... good question! I forget the colour coding.
We started at Sargans and went to Lenk and then Truttlisberg Pass via the Swiss Via Alpina (Route 1) and Kev Reynolds Alpine Passes.
Didn't fancy Montreux - too tourist, so took the Kev Reynolds route to Gsteig. I think this is on the European Via Alpina, or Swiss Route 82.
From Gsteig we went to Godey via route 82 and the Poteau des Etales. Incredible limestone pavement country, but the descent of the Poteau in the dry is alarmingly dangerous to say the least. In the wet ...
From there we went over Pas De Cheville to Solalex and then to Barboleusax. Cog trains down to Monthey (noisy place) and up to Champery, cable car to Planpraz.
We then reversed the GR5 (done previously) to Reyvroz, turned left and followed the Leman Balcon over Hermone (wonderful views) to Col de Feu, then went cross country on yellow tracks etc to Thonon.
Stayed for a couple of days pending plane flight in the Hotel le Comte Rouge at Thonon - highly recommended as inexpensive and the cook/owner was excellent!