The ancient way of the pilgrims, among the tops that were cradle of the village of Borgotaro, looking for traces of the ancient hospitality given back in time to the devoted trekkers.
Starting point: La Ramata (Borgo Val di Taro)
Cai trail number 843
The track starts in La Ramata, on the border wuth the Municipality of Bardi. The territory of Borgotaro cross th crest here and goes down in the Ceno valley. It goes up the side viewing the fields of Ceredasco, to the crest in Pradetto, following the Cai trail number 843.
From Pradetto follow the crest, among woods of beeches and dark pinewoods, until you reach a small church called Maestà di Caffaraccia. The church dates back to the beginning of the 19th century and it is said that it was built bu and austriac prisoner of the contingent assigned to the contruction of the road of the Val Vona.
From there the trail goes right, halfway down, to the open space of Pradonico, not far from the Buono lake. The field is dominated by a little church dedicated to the Deads of the Resistence. Follow the road going down, passing the aqueduct with fountain, then get out of the woods in the village of Rola.
La Rola is a terrace hung on the Taro valley, facing the Cogena and the Molinatico mountain and, on a clear day, the view arrives to the Prinzera mountain and the Pianura Padana. A few hundred meters down there are the first houses of the village of S. Pietro.
This village has also two churches (S. Cristoforo and S.Pietro), the houses stand along the Southern side of the mountain, to the sun and repaired in wintertime.
In Pilone there is a 19th century altar where, according to the popular tradition, mysterious facts take place, here leave the main street and take the croassroad to Vadonnino, ancient court of the Manara marquees. The track goes on near the crest of the Cappella mountain, then it goes down towards the Taro river on asphalted road through former vineyards stoney terracing.
Pass the bridge on the Vona river and follow the bike route along the water, until Borgotaro arriving near the palazzo dello Sport, then go towards the bridge of San Rocco, to cross the Taro river.
Pass by the 18th century church of San Rocco, that houses a Via Crucis by Gaspare Traversi, and go up to the monumental cemetery, where is the Sacrario dedicated to the Partisans Deads and victims of the IInd World War. A road on the left goes up to the Mulino dell'Aglio, a mill still working with waters until a few years ago, with three millstones for chestnuts, corn and wheat.
The track goes on a cartroad in the village of Galoppina, so named because it was the last part of the track on which horses could have been sprun on before climbing the Appennines. The trail is flat here and crosses fields divided by old hedges of hawthorn and blackthorn.
After the village of Valletta tha tracks climbs up and gets into turkey oak woods and small fields, until getting to the church of S. Vincenzo.
From S. Vincenzo go down to the bridge on the Tarodine, where is the provincial road of the Pass of Bratello until the village of Valdena, then turn to the municipal road to the church.
Near the church leave the asphalt and take the track into the woods of ancient chestnuts. The track goes up on the feet of the Cucco mountain, through the chestnut wood and then a plantation of black pine, until it reaches the moor near the Pass of the Borgallo where the track ends.
Cover photo: Bardi's Castle, photo by Alessandro Bonvini via Flickr
Borgo Val di Taro (Emilia Romagna)
Strela di Compiano (Emilia-Romagna)
Villafranca in Lunigiana (Tuscany)
Santa Maria del Taro (Emilia-Romagna)
Castiglione Chiavarese (Liguria)
Varano de' Melegari (Emilia-Romagna)
Varese Ligure (Liguria)
Varese Ligure (Liguria)