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Mountain in summer

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Well, not one week after coming back from the sunny shores of Sardinia, in an attempt to escape the 38-42 degrees (centigrades) with high humidity we accepted the invitation of a good friend who owns a flat in Made, so, Saturday morning (yesterday) loaded the car and headed north, to the mountains.
Temperatures became immediately cool (in all meanings), with a wonderful 23 centigrades at 2 p.m., and after taking a "quick" lunch, we headed out for a stroll in the village, killing time till 7 p.m. when the cable car was said to open to reach the mid mountain Larici restaurant and dine...
Unknowingly, with our stroll, we took a path along the runs (which in summer, have been converted in a golf course, at least in the lower part) and step by step (like the proverbial thousand miles journey) almost unknowingly found oruself on a good path to reach the hut (restaurant) on time for dinner. One of our group (out of four) had elected to stay home, not feeling well...
So a quick phone call to tell him we were already at our convened destination and please to reach us with warmer clothes (we were out in shorts and tee shirt, planning to go home and change for the dinner before boarding the calbe car, a thing bypassed by our little stroll) for the evening. Of course the restaurant was crowded, but we had a pelasant evening, then boarded the cable car down to the vilage (it was 10 p.m, all dark, and the cows were sleeping in the open on the runs...ever seen cows grazing and sleeping on what in the wintertime become snowed runs?).
Nice , no wonderful to be walking around the mountains again...
Now as I type, it's 0800 a.m. and the sun outisde the window is shining at times, playing with the cloiuds which are gathering for the day (weather forecast isn't for a sunny day, but we'll see) and I am waiting for my Gf and friends to wake up for today walk...
Ahh, mountains...

P.S. Mr Prickly, are you here?  
post #2 of 8
Thread Starter 

Seven hours later we're back home, a sunny day hopping across the Swiss- Italian border up there in the 2000-2400 mt A.S.L.
We reached the Bertacchi hut in about 1h 40, there to chew some food and drink a coffee, then off to try and reach the Spadollazzo peak,

the path is steep and after about one more hour walk I decide that I've earned my day, the weather is gathering, with wind and clouds gathering, so, not safe for me to try to close the loop crossing into Switzerland and back to where we parked our car.

Rather GF and me decide to go back to the Bertacchi hut and then to descend to Made directly from there.

Oru two friends decide to finish the day job...

Back to the hut for a brief pause, some more chew, then off we go to the direct path to the village, we can see it down there it's not far, plus the sun is shining (I've got some heavy sun burn, despite two weeks sunbathing by the seaside)...while we climb down a loca lguy is climbing the same path, with his trial bike nonetheless!
Such a lovely walk, thanks to the poles which assisted us during the clib and during the descent, our legs did not suffer too much.
Well, I know what you're thinking : "What? No pictures?"...Yes, I've got pictures, as soon as I'll download from the camer, I'll post...

BTW it's now 6 p.m. and our friends aren't home yet, they ar due in anytime soon (they're ok, we talked on the cell phones dueing the afternoon...)and then...Pizza! 

post #3 of 8
No, Mr. N, I was on the Cote d'Azur (sigh). Mrs. Prickly doesn't even want to hear about the mountains in summer.
post #4 of 8
Thread Starter 
Oops, sorry to have touched a sore point. C'mon, Cote d'A, is also wonderful this time of the season, well, anytime it's wonderful. I'd be hardly pressed to choose where to go. Usually I am and end up staying at home instead of travelling to the sea or to the mountains...You know, kind of like in Buridan's donkey paradox...

The week end was really lovely (not that I don't like the sea in the summer, far from it, I'm as much a water animal as possible for a terrestrial biped, but couldn't turn away the offer to spend a week end in Made, escaping the high temps on the plains), the sun was shining and the temps were in the 17-23 degrees range. So cool that I let myself be induced in error (considering that I am coming out of a two week long period in the Sardininan sun) and have taken the worse sunburn on arms, forearms and face (particularly the nose) since I was a child.
The views, spectacular. Simply. Then, to discover I'm still capable to climb (walk) at a reasonable pace (for me, 1h 40') compared to the offcial 1h 30') from the Splugen lake to the Rifugio Bertacchi...a wonder.

P.S. My regards to Mrs Prickly and the boys! 

P.P.S. the friends came homee at 18.20, having taken a wrong turn on the path end ending on the Suretta glacier, a long way off our inital planned route. Still they arrived home safe and sound (a tad exhausted though)
post #5 of 8
Wow, that's a big detour! Can't wait to get back up there, but at this point it won't be until first snowfall. Be doing weekends in Liguria for a bit now, swimming, biking, etc.
post #6 of 8
Thread Starter 

Looking down (the village atthe bottom is Madesimo only the very first houses cvan be seen) :

Hey, it's a "ferrata" (look closely somewhere in front of the ppl, you'll see chains attached to the rock, you don't imagine the effect to "normal" people when someone says "I've done a ferrata"...ok I cheated, that's a "ferrata" but I don'0t know why, the path is so wide an F-14 could land on it)



Well, in truth after "summiting" we arrived in view of this beautiful alpine lake


 5 minutes later we came to our first resting point (notice the Epic ski stickers) :

Our first resting point, the rifugio "Bertacchi" (am a bit confused by the elevation declared, some map says 2142, some othet 2192, some other 2196 )
post #7 of 8
Thread Starter 
After the rest we took a path alongside the lake, heding for the Swiss border (in fact our next "hop" was a path shadowing the border)
I wanted to have a closer look at those snow patches

But our path soon turned away from those patches, and began to be closer to a "proper"
climb than to a hike.

We gave it a go for a little bit longer (something more than 1 hr) after passing this second lake

But as the path was not too clearly marked and we had to proceed in a sort of blind reckoning,..

The Spadolazzo summit, the real turning point of our hike was not in sight.. When the weather started to change and we met two people who told us that it was still 1,5 hrs away, decision time arrived for me...My forces were a bit on the "low", and we (two of us, me and GF) were not correctly equipped for something that was getting closer to a climb with each step we were taking, so, we had to turn back and descend to the Bertacchi hut once again, our two firends decided to continue...
Clothelines at Bertacchi (drying clothes not ours):

And after a second rest stop we took the direct path (a steeper path) down to Made, a path I doubt I could have climbed "up" but with very nice sceneries :

post #8 of 8
Hey Matteo, just getting a look at these photos now (still not able to view in office for some reason). Great stuff. Mrs. Prickly and I went for a hike up there years ago and accidentally wandered into Switzerland. There's an abandoned border station up there; only indication you've gone over is a concrete Swiss flag on the ground. No one there, obviously.
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