I’m hoping for more days like we used to have in winter – bright, clear and cold. The weather so far this year has only given us very few of them. Looking through my photos for December 2005 I come across these snaps which were taken on a walk in the area of Colle Cipollaio just south of Monte Altissimo. (There’s my post on the “very high” mountain so beloved of Michelangelo at https://longoio.wordpress.com/2013/06/28/taking-the-michaelangelo/)
From Castelnuovo di Garfagnana we follow the road towards the mountain mining village of Arni and stop just short of the Cipollaio tunnel, which connects the east and west parts of the Apuane and is the only through road in this part of the range, near Campanice.
Here, on the left, CAI (Club Alpino Italiano) path no 10 winds up to the Passo Croce where it joins path no 141 which then turns into path no 11. Near the abandoned mountain alpeggio (summer grazing settlement) of Fociomboli we join path no 128 which takes us back to the start.
It was a highly enjoyable circular walk (the ones I like best) and all of the time we were tramping through deep snow. I don’t think I’ve spent so much time walking in the white stuff and I felt I could have done with some snow shoes.
Throughout the day was very clear, and lovely views could be had of the surrounding mountains, including the Monte Altissimo, Monte Freddone and Monte dei Ronchi.
On our return we stopped at a café-bar which once served the workers at the nearby closed Henraux mine (see my post at https://longoio.wordpress.com/2013/06/13/losing-ones-marbles/). Although we were glad of the warmth its stove provided us the establishment seemed to me to be more in place in a Siberian camp.
I hope that soon this winter I’ll be able to enjoy such fabulous walks again!
(And if I not able to, I’d definitely want to return to this area in summer to see it in all its green glory. The peat bog at Fociomboli particularly fascinates me as it is the only such one in the whole Apuan mountain range and it would be interesting to see what wild plants grow there).