Between soil and water. Some hairpin before the colle del Nivolet road, near the Losere ponds starts the ancient mule track built by the Savoy for the royal hunts. The Bastalon indeed, today used by the Gran Paradiso National Park ranger, was a wooden shelter of the real rangers.
Wonderful high altitude path next to the highest edges of the valley bordering with the Vanoise french Park. The almost flat path runs along the glacial basin of the Serrù lake. It represents an incredible opportunity to observe the alpine environment in its entirety; ibex, chamois and typical Alpine fauna typical of high altitudes frequent the Lake, the prairie houses curious families of marmots, while eagle and bearded vulture often fly over with an eye to the nearby valleys, extraordinarily shaped by the erosive action of the numerous glaciers.
From Valnontey hamlet follow a dirt track that, climbing up the Valley, leads to the Valmianaz village, perhaps the best example in Cogne Valley of local architecture, both as individual buildings, and as components of a conglomeration. Along the way is definitely worth stopping by the well known Prà Suppiaz peat-bog, very delicate damp environment, so we suggest to approach with caution to be able to observe the typical aquatic vegetation and fauna (grass snake, common frog, etc).
The departure is from Piamprato Soana (the village at the end of the Valley that extends from Valprato Soana), located in a pleasant grassy basin and surrounded by pine forests. Take the dirt track that leaves the village and, after crossing the stream, climb the Vandilliana Alp, pasture still used by shepherds, 1881 m above sea level.
3h 30’ (circuit total time from the bends over Noasca)
Scent of History. A nature path just upstream of Noasca, partly furnished with explanatory panels, goes through villages in the historic Valley of the Roc once inhabited the whole year and enriched by remains of frescoes. This wonderful example of combination between history of the territory and nature finds its maximum expression completing the circuit that continues until Pianchette, crossing a confy and fresh beech forest. house of many animal species of the Park.
At the end of the road of Rhêmes Valley lies the village of Thumel, from which, ignoring the farm road on the right which climbs towards the refuge, follow the wide path that starts at the end of the paved road. From the entrance of the trail, past a bridge, continue along the Dora di Rhêmes. Crossing a marshy plain, continue to climb until you cross the dirt track again that leads to a characteristic roman bridge lapped by an impressive waterfall. Passed the bridge and changed the hydrographic side, you reach the Lavassey alp and, as last short uphill section, you arrive to the hut.
From Campiglia Soana, parish and municipality in the past, you climb along the dirt track leading to the Azaria plain. Before reaching it, take a well indicated deviation on the right for the sanctuary of Saint Bessus. The cult of Saint Bessus is one of the oldest in the Alps and still today unites community of mountain and plain: on the 10th of August every year, inhabitants of Cogne and Val Soana meet for worship at the bottom of the cliff where the sanctuary grows. The sanctuary is located along the ancient road that links the Cogne Valley and the Canavese.
The picturesque village of Piamprato, in the homonym Valley going up from Valprato Soana, offers numerous walks, more or less difficult, starting mostly crossing the village. We proceed along the wide track to reach the broad and beautiful plateaus above populated by marmots and grazing herds, next to Grange Prariond. For climbing lovers it's possible to reach the rocky plateau on the left orographic side of the valley, before entering in the village.
From Rhemes Notre Dame, departed from the small village of Bruil, follow the signs for the Entrelor Hill. The trailhead is located right next to the Park house, home of the surveillance service in the Valley (Oreiller hamlet). At the first fork in the trail continue as shown on the left to the Sort Valley.
608 (Bochettiera) – 610 (Boschietto) – white and red.
Departure can be both from the small village of Forzo and the really near Molino di Forzo, going up to Tressi and from here following the path to the medium-size Forzo Valley. Starting from Tressi, after crossing a rocky outcrop where you can see a beautiful shrine placed in the rock, it continues in the Valley arriving at the bottom of a balcony, on which stands the village of Boschietto and its characteristic church recently restored. It's likely to sight hibex and camois.
Leave the car in the Piazzale Campiglia Soana, take the dirt road that leads to Pian of Azaria. The route has only some climb to reach the broad plateau of the basin at the bottow of the rocky ridges of Rancio. A typical alpine forest mixed of deciduous and coniferous accompanied along the way to end in Gr. Barmaion only with beautiful specimens of spruce and larch trees. Beyond the pasture, the forest gives way to the alpine meadow, rich in colorful blooms frequented by important species of butterflies and other alpine insects.
It starts from the small village of Thumel, waymark n.11; after crossing the creek, we begin a long but enjoyable uphill in a forest of conifers (spruce, larch and stone pine) to get up to the huts of the Vaudaletta, subject of an important process of functional recovery by the park authority. From the naturalistic point on view the area is very interesting: it's possible to sight camois, marmots, rock ptarmigan and the mountain vegetation is well represented. The more experienced can continue towards the Leynir hill, from where a spectacular view on the Rhêmes Valley and on Gran Paradiso w
From Ronco Canavese, main village of the Soana Valley, where the Visitors Centre dedicated to traditions and biodiversity in the valley is located, you can take the path to the Nivolastro village, one of the best examples of alpine architecture in the Soana Valley. Along the whole path it's easy to get suggestions on the social life of the past: you can observe the special votive chapels built for protection and resting of travellers as well as a distinctive abreuvoir just before the village.
Simple loop hike that allows you to enter in the wide valley of Valeille, dominated by glaciers. Through a beautiful forest of larches and spruces, populated by numerous songbirds and squirrels, you reach a balcony facing the beautiful waterfall of Lillaz: here we recommend you to follow the various waterfalls along the path, sometimes steep, that enter back in Lillaz near the hydroelectric station.
Departure from the main hamlet of Rhêmes Notre Dame with clear signs, passed the Dora di Rhêmes, climb up the Entrelor valley. Don't consider the deviations to the Sort valley or to the Chaudanne village and after some uphill sections in the woods you will come close to the precious Entrelor alpine pasture, also called Pian delle marmotte. Entering the Valley you reach the next characteristic pasture called Plan de Feye where wildlife sightings, particularly Chamois and marmots are frequent.
Departure from Piamprato Soana from where take the dirt road that leaves the village and crosses the first meadows to then go along the stream. Passed the turn-off to the Colle della Ballard, continue along the track, going through some bends to coast Grange Prariond, then continue until a small parking lot. From here keep going on the trail up to the Grange Ciavanassa, bypassing on the right. Along the margin, a larch forest, you arrive at a second building to then bend to the left towards the engraving of the Royal Canal.
The frogs reign. There are many surprises in a mountain hike: after an ascent suddenly a valley, a waterfall and a stream occur, crossed by a wooden bridge, larch trees, votive chapels, steep ravines, small lakes among pasture and roche moutonnée, aerial panorama, showy blooming.. but be careful: the frog life need to be respected: do not collect tadpoles!
If you want, it's possible to climb up more over the Bardoney valley and reach the Loie lake to then go down to Lillaz on a route, sometimes steep, but definitely panoramic.
Leave the car in the parking lot in Thumel, continue along the road until you reach the path with the waymark 12. Crossing a bridge, take the path on the left; passed the Dora di Rhêmes through a gangway, go forward into the Valley of the Gran Vaudala torrent. After a steep climb, you reach a plateau where you come across the Gran Vaudala Alp. Now, once arrived to a fork in the road, continue along the same path on the left.
After parking in the confortable car park in Chiapili di sotto, next to the ski-lift or around the equipped area just ahead, continue along the street that goes to the Nivolet Hill, during the winter period it can be travelled over with skis or snowshoes. Simple route that winds between the two slopes of the high Orco Valley which offers a wonderful view over the high Valley near peaks bordering with the french Vanoise National Park. Crystalline forests of conifers north facing, grasslands covered with snow south-facing, peaks, valleys and glaciers all around offer one of the most magnifice
1h 30’ (to reach in Chaussettaz) + 40’ to reach Casotto del Sort
Sometimes you find places of old legends that seem to have reflection in the atmosphere breathed. The Cucco Castle, rocky outcrop topped by an iron cross, was said to be a place frequented by witches who celebrated the Sabbath ... A little higher up, you can also see many trees singed ... strucked by lightnings? Who knows!