Skip to main content

Good day for a hike: 2500 feet, 23 km and 7.5 hours

A hunk of bread, a wedge of aged sheep's cheese, a couple canteens of water and some fruit. I regret not being able to share a more thorough and detailed trail description but this was more for practice and not for the lofty views. Ever since the movie The Way, we both had to know what one 20 kilometer day (12+ miles) would feel like if we were to embark on, at most, the 40-day 800 kilometer Camino de Santiago in Spain. That's a lot of walking. I think I would get real skinny if I missed a meal.

Lecco's mountains are covered in so many up-and-down trails that all you need do is get to any village above the lake. We started at an altitude of 670 meters and walked up another 762 to the top of Monte Tesoro in Valcava. That's a height difference of 2500 feet, 8 kilometers and 2.5 hours at a steady pace with Maddie and Mr B in tow. From there we made a loop trip back down, stopping often to munch on vittles and to take a look around. Altogether a total of 23 kilometers or 14 miles in 7½ hours, and a lot of interesting sights.

We'll try to get up here again after it snows...the view must be something awesome.

With a panoramic viewpoint like that, I'd say this would be prime property if you had the cash to fix it up.

You'll inevitably stumble across a tiny chapel when hiking in these mountains, and they make perfect places to stop for a rest or some peaceful solitude and spiritual enlightenment? I peeked into this one here to see a statue of the Holy Mother and Child.

In english they're known as barn swallows but in Italy we all know them as rondine (rohn-dee-neh). Apparently someone or some people take very kindly to these birds because an entire courtyard is outfitted with birdhouses on the building walls. The sign reads “Respect the rondine and its nest. The rondine really needs a lot of friends.” I didn't see any signs of the barn swallows but it's a common weather expression to say that if these birds are flying low, that means it's going to rain.

If you looked closely in the top pic, an arrow points to the Smurfs. Well smurf or no smurf and who gives a smurf anyway? This inn seems to be the hangout for the Puffi (pooh-fee) as they are known here.


Bella said…
Rowena, I've said it before--I live vicariously through you! I don't know where you get the stamina and the energy. I got tired just reading your post! hee hee! Did Maddie and Mr. B join you on the hike? I saw Maddie in one of the shots! Oh, and I wish I had the cash to fix up that little stone shack! Imagine star gazing up there! Pure bliss!
Rowena said…
Bella - if you're virtually coming along for the ride I suggest you calm down and take it nice and slow. This is not a foot race! You were trying so hard to keep up that you missed the part in the 2nd paragraph where it reads, "We started at an altitude of 670 meters ... at a steady pace with Maddie and Mr B in tow."

You really think those 2 would allow us to leave them at home?!! ^-^
K and S said…
man, if I missed a meal, I would be so grouchy!
Rowena said…
Kat - I don't doubt that one bit, and it amazes me how much Satoshi can still pack it in after already eating so much. I wish I had his stomach capacity.
K and S said…
I swear he was a goldfish in his past life...
Ciao Chow Linda said…
What a gorgeous place to hike.
Rowena said…
CC Linda - I always feel like I can touch the sky when I'm doing walks in this area.
Nice pics... I love to do hiking... Good job! Keep posting....

Popular posts from this blog

Medieval castles but not a knight in sight

Counting castles...what we need now is a lively jousting event and fair maidens. Valle d'Aosta is the land of castelli (castles), and spotting them is almost like engaging in a game of punch bug. I felt that it wouldn't be right to leave out such historical detail, but the sharp'll see what I mean in the photos. Now I don't know if it's due to Walt setting the standard on what a castle should look like, but through the dozen or so times that I've been here, not once did I make any real effort to appreciate these medieval landmarks that have withstood the test of time - save one. That would be the Castle of Sarre (3rd image), where we had our wedding photos taken. I believe that most castles are open to the public, and further info can be found here at Valle d'Aosta Castles . The Disney ish -looking one is Castle Saint Pierre (at right). It's a small world after all. Parking sign [P] and picnic tables (not shown) in front of Cast

A Campari moment

So...the lawn is done. The shower (and a double-sized one at that) scrubbed down. The floors mopped. The "kids" bathed, dried, and nails clipped. The monstrous old fennel cut down and ready to cart away. The kumquat fertilized, dinner done (oxtail soup), and the terrace swept for the 10th time because the "kids" think it's perfectly okay to leave the chestnut peels after devouring those that fall in the yard. The best part? Having my lardo d'Arnad photo featured in an italian restaurant and hospitality magazine, Italia A Tavola . I'm pretty stoked, and was sent a pdf copy of which I've snipped a part here.

A tour of Lake Garda's western shores

If Quantum of Solace had chosen to film elsewhere, I might've never made the effort to visit Lake Garda. Two days and two nights only allowed us to scratch the surface, not nearly enough time to explore the high mountains with the dogs, or check out all of the Slow Food restaurants in this part of the region. Next time it'll have to be 5 days minimun - at least to find the very spot where that photo above was taken! All of the towns along Lake Garda's western shores are very touristic, appealing greatly to german and dutch visitors. We chose to stay in Gargnano mainly because I was able to find a reasonably-priced hotel that allowed small pets, but also for the fact that Benito Mussolini (Italy's last dictator) spent his final days at Villa Feltrinelli which is located on a private stretch of beach in Gargnano. The luxury hotel is an historical building which has been restored with truly impeccable taste (you have to see the website) commanding upwards of 6265+