2012 April ~ Ticino Trekking Pascua

Bonna Pascua! 

That's what we thought when we changed our plans for the Easter weekend, as originally we had planned on going by bike from Olten to Lausanne...but the weather forecast for this part of Switzerland (or actually any part except Tessin) was not in favor of this plan. 

On Friday morning, 7.04 am, train to Bellinzona. After the first stop it got so crowed that we had to change seats a couple of times, but we learned our lesson and reserved seats for the way back later on. After arrival in Bellinzona, quickly on the bus to Cresciano, what we found out a paradise for boulderers. Amazing how many people actually carry their mats on trains and buses!

From Cresciano (265m) up, up and up, towards Ruscada. We arrived at Alpe di Corött (1507m) by our estimated  time, but we aborted the plan of continuing up to the Alpe di Croslee, as the path finding was not clear and we weren't sure about how much snow would be on that side and altitude... later on we found out that this was a wise decision, as we would not have been able to get there without snowshows. Anyways, Alpe di Corött to our surprise did have the winter rifugio open, so we made ourselves comfortable and explored just another couple hundred meters higher also Alpe di Pontei (1696m). For MELA a personal new max of altitude gain per day... 1431m. 

Dinner was delicious, a soup followed by pasta cooked by DO, dessert a yummie banana cake with a night cup of tea. By 9pm we were already tucked into our sleeping bags and listening to the waterfalls and birds out there.

     

Saturday morning - rain! Waiting around a bit we flipped through a book somebody had left behind, by the interesting title of "Liebeszauber", something like Love Spells... lots of BS in there, but one really funny thing stuck with us, mentioned in the paragraph of exchaning the rings and vows.... apparently in past times part of the bride's vow was the promise of being a "playful companion in bed" for the groom. I wonder why after the pageant eras this was left out?

Eventually we decided to face the rain, it wasn't gonna stop anytime soon, so we made our way down the valley again. Over snowy slopes, hanging bridges along a wild river, flanked by huge trees. Truly a hidden beauty, this valley of Cresciano. 

 

Back in Bellinzona we fortunately didn't have to look too long for a room, found one in a bed & breakfast 5minutes from the train station, 100 CHF incl primera collazione. The dinner at Hotel Croce Federale was a desaster - whenever Tripadvisor decides to publish our review we'll insert the link here.

Sunday, the weather forecast was promising, so the plan for Sunday and Monday was exploring the hills and mountains up from Claro. Starting there we went first up in direction Monastero, but turned right at 412m, passing the Molino di Monastero, towards Cavri (yes, again, and another Cavri). Further towards our lunch place Parusciana (1170m) where I again needed several tries until I got a decent self released image of us...

From there we hiked toward Alpe Domas, and Cap. Brogoldone in search of the Alpe di Motta... but Brogoldone was first on our way, after an eternal ascent and me getting more and more in need of a rest... The rifugio was pure luxury, first thing we did was opening a beer that was available there! After the fireplace was lit, DO again made a wonderful dinner, while I tried to get a shot of the setting sun over the southern mountain of Ticino.

 

 

Oh, and by the way - Brogoldone is on 1910m, so Mela pushed the max again to over 1600m per day *big smile* 

Easter Monday ~ and a peak for breakfast! 

I had had the thought the night before, as the Monte Molinera was practically in the front yard of the Capanna...and snow conditions didn't look too bad. At a quarter to 9 we were standing on top, with an amazing 360degree view and the prominent Pizzo di Claro as a background for our peak picture.

The hike down to San Vittore was long and demanding....today, as I am writing this, four days after, my tighs are still sore. 

We rewarded ourselves with a lunch in the only restaurant that was actually open, La Brasera. Look here... www.ristorantelabrasera.ch. We were clearly not dressed for fine dining, and the waiter was somewhat confused by our appearance. He actually actively offered us tap water and one of the more economic starter plates. This made us laugh, as once again the old saying was confirmed "Kleider machen Leute" ... 

 

 

 We had a wonderful four days in Ticino - Bonna Pascua! 

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