An easy and fast stage on the Alta Via dei Monti Liguri, with only one initial climb (albeit substantial).
The day is marked by the ascent to Monte Carmo (1,389 m, the highest in the province of Savona), with a beautiful view of the Ligurian coast.
Absent water points.
We leave again on the Alta Via dei Monti Liguri and immediately start the climb (approx. 600 m height difference) in the woods, very decisive but easy until we reach Monte Carmo di Loano (1,389 m), the highest mountain in the province of Savona. The view opens onto the sea and the coast.
We lose altitude (approx. 200 m drop) and return to the beech and chestnut woods, arriving easily at the Giogo di Giustenice (1,203 m). Continuing along the AVML, the path soon becomes an easy carriage road with gentle ups and downs. Short detours allow us to visit the two old military forts, the Forte Merizzo and the beautiful Fort Tortagna. Right after, we are at Colle di Melogno (1,138 m), with its Forte Centrale.
Proceeding a little on the asphalted road to the east, we find a couple of accommodation facilities. Those who still have enough energy and want to continue on the next (long) stage, can go as far as the Rifugio Pian dei Corsi, 8 km from Colle del Melogno (barely 3 hours).
On 27 November 1944 Colle Tortagna was the scene of an obscure episode linked to the Resistance.
Following a harsh clash with the partisans of the 5th Garibaldi Brigade, 17 Alpini of the Cadore Battalion were captured and killed without any trial by the partisans.
Only a very young Alpino, a minor, was spared thanks to the intervention of the second lieutenant, Del Re (who, given the age of the subject, asked for his pardon). Therefore, he was able to report later what had happened to the comrades.
Today, immersed in the forest where the massacre took place, there is a commemorative monument.
At the end of the 19th century, three forts, Tortagna, Settepani, and Centrale were built by the Royal Army, to create a barrier on the Melogno hill and to protect themselves from an attack that, coming from the coast, could exceed the Colle del Melogno and, going up the Ligurian Alps, reach Piedmont.
In 2010 the Fort Tortagna, in an evident state of neglect (like the other two), was purchased by private individuals.
The moco from Val Bormida is a legume belonging to the cicerchia family which, although essential in the popular diet of the valley for centuries, risked disappearing during the 20th century. For this reason, it is now protected by the Slow Food Presidium.
It was once widespread and loved, as growing on poor soils without special care, it was very useful to the population in times of famine, who also ate it raw. Rich in beneficial properties, it is excellent in soups, broths, and purees or to accompany pork rinds or trotters.
The frizze are meatballs made with liver offal and pork sausage, flavored with juniper berries. Small balls of this tender dough are stuffed inside the pig's caul fat, which is subsequently cooked on the plate, heated in a bain-marie, or even fried.
Osteria del Cantoniere, 500 m from Colle del Melogno (along the route of the next stage). Tel. +39 348 157 029
Rifugio Pian dei Corsi, about 3 hours from Colle di Melogno ( along the route to the next stage). Tel. +39 345 023 5295 - +39 348 461 0407
Starting point reachable by car.
Departure point reachable by bus, starting from the city of Savona with a change in Finale Ligure.
Here the LINK to check the timetables.
Starting point NOT reachable by train.
Va' Sentiero is a grassroot project, thanks to the spontaneous contribution oft housands of people.
Even the most complicated dream, a 7,000km uphill dream,
can be achieved... together.