Sebastian set the route through the Val Grande. He has been there three times, so he knows the local conditions. At first I was a little surprised why we should need four days for about 40 kilometers, but then let me enlighten: the valley is overgrown, the paths are not very well developed and the orientation seems to be difficult. Therefore, the distances on the days with altitude difference are even single digits. In addition, hiking in a group of five can be a bit more cumbersome. In case of doubt we have enough time to enjoy the area - and there should be plenty of territory there.
For mental preparation, I visited an exhibition with great photos from the Val Grande, which is just to see by chance. Area there is actually a lot!
Creation of the packing list
Another step to prepare is to create a packing list. The equipment should be light, for this area with many ascents and descents over several days, I aim at a baseweight of less than eight kilograms. The challenge will be that we will be out somewhere between the heat and the cold. In addition, the months of May and June are the wettest months. So comes from the T-shirt and shorts on warming midlayer and the rain gust. The conditions on the Monte Zeda I estimate rather cool, especially at night, so must be taken there as well.
The nights are spent in the Alpi, so the tent can fortunately stay at home. These Alps are worked by the National Park Administration and supplied with firewood twice a year. Otherwise they are spartan, you sleep on the floor or in wire bed frames and can be glad, if the hut roofs are tight (or not just sheep the Alpe as winter quarters have used). Obviously there should be cookware (which I do not really trust). Therefore, I still pack the bivouac sack to be independent of the Alpi at will and local conditions.
A few kilos come together already
- Clothes: just under 1 kilo
- Sleep system with bivy bag: just over a kilo
- Backpack, sticks etc: 1 kilo
- Nutrition and cuisine: 3 kilograms
- Sanitary, water filter and Medikit: 500 grams
- Camera and technology: 700 grams
The food we can save a bit, as we are on the way to the Alpe Archia food and stay overnight. Nevertheless, 2.5 kilos of food come together, which corresponds to about 7000 calories. That makes a total of 6770 grams of backpack weight and 2650 grams on the body. With a bit of water, I then scratch at the 10.5 kilos. This works well, I think.
Some (weight-) highlights from the packing list are
- Hardshell: Raidlight Top Ultralight Jacket 169g
- Primaloft Sweater: Montane Fireball Smock 260g
- Rain pants: Inov8 185g
- sticks: Black Diamond Distance Carbon Z 290g
- Sleeping bag: Yeti Fever Zero 280g; Silk inlaid 115g
- Biwaksack: Black Diamond Twilight 315g
- Sleeping pad: Thermarest Z-Lite, shortened 360g
- Cooking system: Evernew Appalachian Set Ti 172g plus Esbit 168g
- Backpack Raidlight 30+ plus Frontbag: 940g
To one or other piece of equipment I will then after the tour say something else.