A medium-length stage with little positive difference in height, quiet, and pleasant.
Mostly in ups and downs in the woods, it is sealed by the beautiful villages of Monteviasco and Piero, where time seems to have stopped.
The descent from Alpone to Viasco can be problematic in case of rain, due to the steep and muddy bottom and some slightly exposed passages.
MTB: the cross path from Viasco to Monteviasco has some very critical sections, extreme caution is required.
We start in the direction of Pradecolo, in quiet ups and downs in the woods. Once at Rifugio Campiglio, we can enjoy a coffee on the beautiful terrace overlooking Valle Veddasca. We start again on the comfortable path that runs along the head of the Valle Arasio, on the northern slope of Monte Lema (1,629 m): at times it is necessary to make space between the ferns.
We come to the beautiful church of the Madonna della Guardia and right after, we are in the town of Alpone. We go down a steep path (approximately 350 m drop), being careful with the slippery mud. We are in the inhabited area of Viasco and below us we glimpse Piero. In front of us, on the opposite side, Monteviasco.
We walk on a wide and comfortable halfway path, which goes around the valley, passing some very suggestive, abandoned, and enveloped mountain pastures. After the last one (Alpe Fontanella), the path, although panoramic, becomes more complicated for some (short) exposed and aided parts, on very smooth rock slabs.
We reach the charming hamlet of Monteviasco, from which we descend (approximately 400 m drop) on comfortable cobblestone up to the Piero bridge. Before crossing it, it is worth going to visit the nearby mills. Finally, we cross the Giona torrent and go up briefly to Piero.
The hamlet of Monteviasco can be reached on foot or by cable car.
According to a legend, Monteviasco owes its birth, at the time of the Spanish domination, to four fugitive soldiers whose surnames (Manzoni, Morandi, Cassina, Della) are still widespread today. To escape their loneliness, with a stratagem, the four decided to kidnap just as many young girls of the village of Biegno, thus giving life to the village of Monteviasco (the Hostel Quatra Brighent takes its name from this story).
In the plain of the Giona stream you can see the Piero Mills, built in the 18th century, used until the end of the 19th century and restored at the end of the last century.
The territory was rich in terraces where rye, wheat and chestnuts were grown.
During the period of the youth protest, a large group of young Milanese anarchists from the extra-parliamentary left moved to Piero, reviving the country with their vitality and their imagination.
You can still admire some colorful murals they made in the village and on the nearby mills.
In the municipality of Monteviasco and Piero, fresh cheeses have always been produced. They are made from freshly milked goat's milk, raw and whole: the Curiglia cheese is highly recommended.
These cheeses have a sweet and pleasant taste, without the typical goat flavor, linked to the aging of the milk.
Rifugio Madonna della Guardia, Alpone. Tel. +39 338 638 9076 - +39 338 102 7852
Ostello Quatra Brighent, in Monteviasco. Tel. +39 0332 990021 - +39 333 219 9768
Agriturismo Kedo, in Piero. Tel. +39 333 430 6701
Starting point NOT reachable by car.
The closest location reachable by car is the Rifugio Dumenza car park.
Departure point NOT reachable by bus.
The closest location reachable by bus is Dumenza with a change in Luino, starting from the city of Varese.
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.