Ticino mountain hike on the Gazzirola

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    Ticino mountain hike on the Gazzirola

    Very long day tour (48km) from Rivera (440m) via Monte Bar, Gazzirola (2116m) and Denti della Vecchia to Lugano (278m).

    We arrive by train at 00:56 Rivera on. The sky is starry and the air is very mild. Immediately we shoulder the very light rucksacks (as opposed to the ski tours) and make our way towards Bironico, the next town. We pass under the railway and reach a very nice (at least in light) village called Camignolo (447m), There, the trail branches off the valley and winds its way into the forest. Even if the signposted path does not follow the marked path on the map, we prefer to follow the signs and reach Busio (P. 843), Signposted is now Gola di Lago, the large hilly plateau on which we want to set up our camp. It goes 150 Hm uphill, but we are not sure about the route for a short time, because the foresters seem to have pretty beat the last days, and many trees block the way. Once the Alpe Sta Maria di Lago (P. 1000) reached, it goes slightly downhill to the intersection called Gola di Lago, The sky is still clear, but the wind has increased and we are looking for something sheltered to sleep on. The trail towards Zalto, Bolla and Cpa Monte Bar winds more or less just along a shallow slope. Here and there are houses, with picturesque views of the now beautifully illuminated plains of Lugano. We doubt even if there is a place to sleep for us, because you do not want to just run away from someone in the front yard. So it's time to continue until we find a flat path in front of a renovated shed just after the bend to the east (near Pian Passamonte). Here we have a welcoming view to the south and can lay down on a soft grass pad. The mattresses and sleeping bags are quickly brought out and at 3:30 we sleep like the marmots.

    The alarm rings at 6 o'clock, two and a half hours of sleep have to be enough today. Halfway fresh, we pack the things together and get on the way. The sky is deep blue, no cloud shows, and a light wind blows around us. But when we join the Alpe P. 1194 Reach, this refreshes, and on the cross at P. 1418 He beats us pretty hard around the ears. With such a hair dryer you need definitely good warm clothes! Today Nordföhn is announced, ie the usual scenario of moist air in the south and dry, warm air in the north of the Alps is exactly the opposite. Our luck, we have that Ticino select. About the ridge, go straight on the Caval Drossa (P. 1632), a first vantage point. The view sweeps over Monte Tamaro and its ridge on the other side of the valley, and in the background rises already the Monte Rosa massif and the Valais four thousand. We turn away from it and walk on the tree - free ridge on the Monte Bar (P. 1816), The few snowfields are frozen ice-hard by the wind. At the summit it is 8:40 am, the wind hardly beats you, but the panorama is overwhelming. From here you can see the whole route of the day.

    It continues in easy up and down to Passo di Pozzaiolo (P. 1692)from where the last sweaty piece of road on the Gazzirola goes up. We do not meet anybody, and at 10:30 am we are on the summit, an elongated plateau (P. 2116), The snowshoes we did not need it, the snow is still rock hard. Up here you have a great view of the Alps. The Apennines can be seen, the impressive Monte Rosa east face rises up into the sky, and in the north dominates the Finsteraarhorn with its pointed summit. There are no clouds in all directions. In the east you can see the Bergell, with Piz Badile and Monte Disgrazia. To the south the steep forest landscape of Ticino between Lake Como, Lake Lugano and Lake Maggiore, A dream day today.

    From here, the path is almost always along the Swiss-Italian border, and landmarks accompany you over the ridge. At the "Südgipfel", (P. 2091)We meet two more hikers coming from San Lucio. On the way down over the long and flat ridge we come to Rifugio Gazzirola pass by, and meet some hikers who can now (the wind has abated here) in short pants and T-shirt ascend. At San Lucio, a beautiful Ticino stone church P. 1542, arrived, you are fully in the hustle and bustle. That's no wonder on such a beautiful day. But you can leave that behind quickly, if you follow the trail as we continue towards Batta di San Bernardoanother pass.

    Once there, first break is made. The wind is not blowing here anymore, and the sun is beating down on us with full force. It means well lotion! There are two possibilities from here: Either over the Cima di Fojorina, that would mean ascending again. Or north of it, along the slope, without altitude. Since we have practically exhausted our altitude meter up to here, we choose the second way. There is still good snow here, but the track is still quite hard and the snowshoes are not used. It smells of forest, and yet there is still the snow cover everywhere, at 1500 m. To the Catelina (P. 1602) around we reach the Cap. Pairolobut not without taking a break on a meadow before. It is now 13:45, and we still have a long way to go (luckily, but also behind us, hehe).

    From the cap. Pairolo, which is also busy, the path leads uphill and then follows the steep north flank of the Sassi Palazzi, Shortly thereafter, we branch off following a mark that quickly leads up to the second highest of the "Denti", the Sasso Palazzo (P. 1484), From here you have again a super nice view of almost the entire route of the day, as well as the cheesy green forests south towards Lugano and Lake Lugano. At this rock you can climb well, apparently, two climbers are just starting to rappel.

    After a short stay we go down again, follow the wooded ridge and find the trail again, which now always slightly downhill direction Alpe Bolla leads. There we are then at 16:00 o'clock, and now follow at least 800 Hm Runterweg, first to Cureggia and from there to the city to Lugano. In Cureggia Take another break on the terrace in front of the church, with a wonderful view of Il Salvatore, the "Sugar Loaf" of Lugano. Refuel bottles again, and it goes down the last altitude. Actually, we still wanted to keep our feet in the lake, but this is no longer true. We look a little at the promenade, walk through the old town and come after a short climb on the Train station of Lugano on.

    Very long hike (about 45km) with lots of up and down (about 2500 Hm) on a promising ridge in Ticino. Only on hiking trails, not a bit demanding, only conditionally demanding. Certainly a very nice snowshoe tour, but definitely make shorter or plan two days.



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