ERSAF activities at Melloblocco 2015
MASINO VALLEY, A REGIONAL FOREST IN TWO WORDS
The Forest of Masino Valley extends in the homonym valley for 2,945 ha.
It consists of two areas: the Valle dei Bagni di Masino (367 ha), in the western side, where there is a well known spa, and the Val di Mello (2,578 ha), in the east side, a beautiful alpine paradise.
The territory of the Forest, in the municipality of Val Masino (SO), is owned by the Lombardy Region and is managed by ERSAF (Regional Agency for Services to Agriculture and Forestry).
Pastures, deciduous forests, coniferous woods and rocky peaks form the backdrop to an unique mountain alpine landscape.
Morphologically, areas exhibit the qualities of the classic alpine parks with rugged granite peaks, glacial deposits and accumulations of debris slope. In the valley, the landscape consists of striking portions of pastures, surrounded by coniferous forests (spruce, fir and larch) and hardwood (beech, sycamore, ash, rowan and birch).
BAGNI DI MASINO
The Forest of Bagni di Masino shows a small forest of beech and fir trees, between huge granite boulders covered with moss.
This is just a transit point for hikers seeking the splendour of glacial parks and the majestic peaks, while for tourists is the occasion for a stop at the hot springs, for a picnic in the areas of equipped rest or to discover the various ERSAF proposals, as the climbing path among the boulders, the sensory trail and orienteering activities.
ERSAF deals with the management of the forest and performs activities for the promotion and enjoyment of the area through:
• Information Center (open in summer) where you can get tourist information, consult maps for hiking and brochures
• „The House in the Forest“ (Casera dei Bagni di Masino), managed by Legambiente Lombardia, an NGO, offering hospitality and educational activities
• the tactile sensory trail for the blind and visually impaired
• the path climbing on boulders
• path for orienteering activity
VAL DI MELLO
The Val di Mello is a valley of huge beauty, deeply incised by the glacial activity with the classic U-shaped profile and is a natural paradise for everyone, most experienced by climbers on spectacular granite walls, but also by occasional hikers for pleasant walks to the discovery of a place rich in traditional culture.
Here is the birthplace of „bouldering“ and a favourite destination for lovers of „bouldering“, when applied to countless boulders in the valley.
The valley has been protected since 2009 by the institution of the Natural Reserve Val di Mello, of which the Regional Forest represents more than half of the surface.
The regional property extends on the slopes where the glacial parks open with the pastures. On the north-facing slope, giving way from the entrance to the amphitheatres of Arcanzolo, Mezzola, Temola and Romilla, which constitute up to LIFE Path, the area to the Integral Reserve. These areas, once grazed in the summer, now are left to the natural evolution.
Continuing, the head of the valley is occupied by the great amphitheatre of Pioda – Remoluzza – Cameraccio, a pasture still grazed where there are the bivouac Kima along the trail Rome and some buildings, recently renovated and given in concession to shepherds and Mountain Wilderness Association.
The regional property stops at the Valle del Torrone, in the municipality of Mello, to resume with the valley of Zocca, other area used for pasture and given a concession with the alpine building. The valley Zocca is travelled by trail from the valley floor to the refuge Students, also situated along the trail Rome. The steep climb is interrupted in the natural basin, known in dialect as „zocùn“; here is to search the reason for the name of the valley: from a flood plain where the river flowing lazily to feed a wetland at high altitude.