Martin on the TGO Challenge 2017

Martin on the TGO Challenge 2017

Monday, 5 July 2010

A Trip to Parco dello Stelvio

We slept well again at the Azzurro campsite, which considering its lakeside location was surprisingly free from insects of either the flying or the crawling variety. The weekenders having returned home - this morning many pitches were occupied by caravans and tents (usually both) with shutters and awnings drawn until next Friday, when their owners will no doubt return from the city - the place was quiet. Just a few retired folk remain, and a few Dutch and German tourists - the poor minority who can't afford to rent villas!.

Another storm, around midnight, lit the sky and cleared the air, forcing us to close our doors and encouraging a slow start after allowing the sun to dry off the tent - we never know when next it'll be used.

The short drive to Riva, a pretty town at the head of Lago di Garda, saw us back in sticky 35C heat. That didn't really spoil our visit, as we gently wandered around, in the knowledge that we would be returning here on a less sultry occasion, if not on this trip.

Today's picture was taken from the top of Riva's Torre Apponale, a C13 tower with fine views over the hazy lake, and across colourful rooftops to enticing mountains.

After a delightful alfresco lunch in an arboretum in nearby Arco, we commenced phase three of this holiday (phase 1 = cities, phase 2 = Lago di Garda area) and headed through those mountains, up to the Stelvio National Park, where we are camped (yes, we decided to use the tent) in a delightful spot just outside the village of Trafoi. We are up at about 1550 metres where the air is cooler. Long trousers and fleeces may come out later, and sleeping bags will be used in anger for the first time this trip.

The campsite is far enough from the main road for the bird song to happily drown out any roaring of combustion engines as cars and bikes start their 1200 metre ascent to the top of the Stelvio Pass, which, if my memory serves me, featured in a 'Top Gear' escapade.

There are lots of nutcrackers, but I can't work out what is singing so tunefully - larks or maybe just blackbirds. It's lovely.

We are pleased to hear that Dot is enjoying our broadcasts and that they are bringing back happy memories to that particular well travelled member of our audience.

However, we know most readers won't have visited this part of the world. It's a fine area, even in a heat wave.

Jamie - you should come if you haven't been before! You could get someone to deputise for you at the Altrincham Festival, just like we did. Thanks for that go to 'Stay At Home Hazel With The Huge Wallet' - we are sure she did us proud at the Festival whilst her crazy husband was bagging 11 Munros in a weekend. So that's the South Glen Shiel Ridge done then?

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1 comment:

Gayle said...

So, you'll be cool enough to put the sleeping bags to use tonight? Last night in North Yorkshire it was too hot for that (slept the night in just a silk liner). And I was in an area where I'd never been before. Bit like if I'd been in Italy, then?

(Okay, perhaps not...)