Monday, June 07, 2010

Hiking in Fuipiano Valle Imagna (Bergamo) - part I

Valle Imagna

Il tetto della Valle Imagna (the roof of Imagna valley). We liked this hike so much that four days later I cooked up some yummy Hawaii-style eats and we went back for more. Trails around Lecco and Como may boast magical views of the lakes, but just 19 miles northwest of Bergamo the landscape is no less enchanting. This photo was taken high above the village of Fuipiano Valle Imagna (pop. 240, bottom left). We live over the mountain range in the far distance - you can barely make out the line of signal towers at the crest - so that gives an idea of how right in the middle of hiking heaven we are.

From Fuipiano Valle Imagna to Zuc di Valbona - 50 minutes

A metal crucifix marks the location which is easily seen from Fuipiano on a clear day. Once at the top, you'll have a pick of great spots to spread out a picnic lunch, but be forewarned that getting there means a very steep climb that will give your thigh, calf and derriere muscles a workout! In the photo below, you can just make out the exposed trail on the right that climbs along the face of the mountain.

Looking up from Fuipiano Valle Imagna

Right, left, right, right. Take those directions at each fork along the way and it will lead to the above-mentioned 20% grade that ends at a storage building before finally curving up to Zuc di Valbona. Google map: to get to where the trail begins, upon reaching Fuipiano (A), drive to the end of via Milano (B). There are a couple of parking areas on the side of the road. From here an asphalt passage (authorized vehicles only) goes up to private pasture and you'll soon meet the first fork in this itinerary. This trail coasts along the 579 until it (#579) branches off into the forest after the last fork. Heading in the direction of the red arrow, the ultra steep climb soon comes into view.

Zuc di Valbona itinerary
sentiero 579 crucifix at Zuc di Valbona shot from another zuc
Rambling through cool pine forests the killer knee workout on the return alpine flowers

15th century village Arnosto

Don't miss the nearby località of Arnosto (look for white on brown signposts) when visiting Fuipiano Valle Imagna. It has been restored to picture postcard condition and even has its own page - Amici di Arnosto - on Facebook.

Località Arnosto



Blogger Frizzy and Bird said...

Why is it that a hike here just doesn't have the same...excitement or interest as they do in Europe and Italy?

12:23 AM, June 07, 2010  
Blogger K and S said...

man, that looks like a mean hike! though a very beautiful one.

1:20 AM, June 07, 2010  
Blogger Rowena... said...

Frizzy & Bird - I've asked myself the same thing...can't pinpoint what it actually is, but I don't get as amped over hiking as I do here in Italy.

Kat - I'm getting in all the practice I can for Mt. Fuji! Every single weekend if it isn't too hot. ^-^

7:54 AM, June 07, 2010  
Blogger K and S said...

good for you :)

8:08 AM, June 07, 2010  
Blogger Anne in Oxfordshire said...

I can remember this area , although didn't do hikes..One day I think we will have to go back again and experience it for ourselves.

Are you going to climb Mt Fuji ??

8:36 AM, June 07, 2010  
Anonymous casalba said...

Couldn't help smiling half way through this post: the detail you went into giving directions - even a google map... like I'm really going to do that! Even the promise of a picnic and great views at the top... nope, I'll just follow you here, thanks.

10:35 AM, June 07, 2010  
Blogger RONW said...

a hiking-and-food blog. Cannot get anymore healthier than that.

11:24 AM, June 07, 2010  
Blogger Sophie said...

What a lovely hike & what a lovely & beautiful scenery!!


11:25 AM, June 07, 2010  
Blogger Rowena... said...

Anne - my dream is to one day climb Mt. Fuji, so until that day comes, I'm getting in all the practice that I can!

Casalba - I'm sure that it has something to do with our dependency on the navigator, but I'm covering my bases in the event someone writes and tells me that they couldn't find the trail! Most italian itineraries just tell you to park at the top of the town...we always end up stopping in at the bar for directions!

RONW - it's something in the air I tell you. Let's just hope I don't start uploading yodeling videos on this site.

Sophie - the nice thing was not having the place crowded like how Lake Como typically is during summer. So much easier to enjoy the beauty in silence.

11:12 PM, June 07, 2010  
Blogger Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Love the pics, especially the one of Arnosto.

1:43 PM, June 09, 2010  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Next time you guys are in Bergamo let us know. We usually go hiking on Sundays. I'd like to start exploring more of Lecco too.

9:27 AM, July 27, 2010  
Blogger Rowena... said...

scatteredmoments - take a look at this site for Valle Vertova. We are waiting until the temps fall until we do some hiking around there. Will definitely let you know unless you beat us to this place!

9:24 AM, July 28, 2010  
Anonymous Princess Fifi said...

PrincessFiFi - OMG!! Myself and a friend decided to do the walk suggested in Fuipiano Valle Imagna this past weekend. Although we battled a little to find the start of the trail we were soon on our way... Wow! what a walk, what a view and overall What a day... I'm used to hiking in the gentle hills of Derbyshire, England and a few bumps they call hills around the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa. My legs were not prepared for this one and are now feeling it but ready to do it all over again.... The only thing missing for us was our beloved dogs that we left back in South Africa. But for anyone thinking about tackling this hike - GO FOR IT!!! Worth every second... thanks for the suggestions and look forward to more...

3:25 PM, May 30, 2012  

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