Locals enjoying Lake Como: hiking to San Lucio
I hope you will enjoy this new series: locals enjoying Lake Como area
This fist piece is from Federico, owner of our beautiful Hotel Loveno
The sky is clear, the air is warm. Stuff and traffic are not for me, it’s the right day to go and enjoy a cool walk. Let’s see where could go. A place far from the crowd, maybe with a beautiful view of the mountains surrounding the lake and not too challenging, this year the training is low.
The right place is San Lucio, Romanesque church located at the pass that connects Italy to Switzerland, above the end of Val Rezzo.
This place is far from the usual tourist routes of the central lake.
Reaching it is not easy, the road that leads to the small town of Buggiolo, at the bottom of the Val Rezzo, is long, narrow and impervious, but this is the price to pay for a slice of paradise.
Better to go by foot because the first part of road winds through a dense forest of beech and chestnut trees where the sun does not arrive and I can enjoy a little fresh air.
Also, the choice to use boots allows me to use the car to get to the starting point of my walk. Unfortunately by public transport is not possible to go, because the bus line C27(Porlezza – Val Rezzo) to Seghebbia is operating just once a day in the morning to bring students at school and once around lunchtime to take them back home.
Arrived at Buggiolo with the car, you need to continue on the paved road for about a kilometer and a half until you reach Seghebbia. Leave the car in the parking at the end of the village and find the sign, white and red, of the path “4 Valli”, n. 3.
After a first stretch that develops over pastures, you will enter in a beautiful beech forest and proceed along the path, now the important is not get lost (I am joking, but, you will meet some crossroads with other paths, keep following the red and white signs of the path n. 3)!
The stretch in the woods is about two and a half kilometers long with a drop of 250 meters, after having walked it, you’ll find a military road.
Follow the road that climbs smoothly and enjoy the splendid panorama that opens towards the mountains of the lake, but this is just the beginning, still too low. you have to get to the pass of San Lucio!
In the end, after one and a half kilometers of peaceful walking with a constant slope, you’ll be there. Here on the watershed saddle, the view stretches from the Italian and Swiss Lepontine Alps, the Grigna, the Grignetta, the Garzirola, the Pizzo di Gino, the Bregagno and, towards the west, the Swiss territory begins with the Val Colla and its gentle degrade.
A look at the beautiful Romanesque church built around 1300 and dedicated to San Lucio, a shepherd, and dairyman who lived in this area between the 12th and 13th centuries and martyred here.
Now, however, views and alpine architecture are enough. In short, beautiful climb, beautiful view, beautiful little church rich in history, but it’s time to put the legs under the table (time to eat something!). There is the embarrassment of the choice. There are two huts that offer typical local dishes, one in Italy and the other in Switzerland, just a few meters from each other. The first is located in an old renovated Guardia di Finanza barracks, let’s not forget that this is a land of saints, but mostly smugglers. To this, we owe the presence of so many barracks along the entire Alpine ridge that divides Italy from Switzerland and that now, after the “bricolle” age, they have become shelters and refreshment points.
LOCAL TIP: If you choose to stay on this side (Italian side) of the border you can have polenta uncìa, sausage, a nice ice cold beer and, not to be outdone, a slice of cake. Now the reality that surrounds the place seems different to me, more clear. A wooden bench greets me on the beautiful terrace of the shelter and, kissed by the sun and with a full belly, I share this beautiful spot with the hikers who have come up here on foot or by bicycle. Among them, there is a family, father, and son, who have come from the Swiss side with two trial bikes, strictly electric, because motorized traffic is forbidden and reserved only for those who have a special permit.
Someone asks where we get on the road that continues to rise. I am flattered to be considered an old expert of these mountains, more for the expert than for the old. I begin to describe the ascent to Mount Garzirola (2.116 meters) that overlooks the San Lucio pass.
But it is getting late, it’s time to go back. The descent is quite, I take it easy enjoying the scents of grass and flowers and the wonderful sunset over these little-known mountains.