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    Valle da Riei

    Cresmino (Onsernone) - Streccia - Oratorio Sant'Anna - Verscio

    Route Details | Route Description | Comments about this tour (0)

    Valle da Riei

    Cresmino (Onsernone) - Streccia - Oratorio Sant'Anna - Verscio

    Published on 30.12.2016 by GabrielleMerk - Tour Date: 26.12.2016

    We mapped this particular tour for maximum sunshine on a winter day (when there is little snow and mild weather in the Ticino then this tour can be done year-round) and were not disappointed! Furthermore, the tour offers some spectacular views of the Melazza Valley with the villages of Terre di Pedemonte (Cavigliano, Verscio and Tegna) all the way across the Maggia Delta and Lago Maggiore to the peaks of Monte Tamaro and Monte Gambarogno.

    Starting in the Onsernone Valley, you quickly move to the Southern Flank of Pedemonte and marvel at the contrast of the warm sun compared to dark winter shadows below. The trail is easy enough for the first half hour through typical Ticino forests and past some lovely rustici homes.

    After a short steep ascent, the most interesting part of the trail takes you unexpectedly along a steep cliff wall on a narrow trail through two fascinating short tunnels whose entrances and roofs are so low you must bend down to go through! The trail is wide enough and there are guard rails on the downhill side, but it would be best to be vertigo-free to pass this section.

    About 1 hour and 15 minutes into the hike the trail turns northward into the Riei Valley, which we follow all the way back (on the upper trail -- there are several short wet sections in winter and spring where small rivulets come off the cliffs) to the little hamlet of Streccia, a surprising and sleepy oasis in a well-groomed clearing. From here you could descend into the Maggia valley; in any case, there is a small rise above the hamlet where you get a good view of Monte Cardada-Cimetta in the Maggia Valley.

    Descending through the hamlet and along the river Riei are loads more surprises, including lovely stone walls encasing a stone path, great afternoon lighting in the leafless trees (in winter) and a Grotto which unfortunately is only open from Easter to October.

    At the little arched bridge lower down one could descend directly to Verscio, but a nicer alternative is the detour via Oratoria Sant'Anna, perched wonderfully above Tegna and Verscio with more superb views into the valley. A great place to soak in the late winter afternoon sun!

    The trail from here to Verscio is easy to descend as it is nicely paved in stones and passes several shrines... this was probably the pilgrim's ascent from the valley to the church above. And Verscio is a lovely typical Ticino community worth a stroll through before heading to the train station.



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    Published on 30.12.2016 by GabrielleMerk - Tour Date: 26.12.2016

    Route Details 

    Download GPS-File / SwitzerlandMobility Map
    Download GPS-File / SwitzerlandMobility Map
    Time Required
    3 hours
    10 km
    357 m
    587 m
    Season Start / Season End
    February - November
    Level of Difficulty (Hiking)
    Points of Interest
    Streccia, Oratorio Sant'Anna.
    Starting Point
    Cresmino in the Onsernone Valley
    Starting Point with Public Transport
    Return with Public Transport
    Places to Eat
    Verscio, Grotto Da Rosy near Streccia (open Saturdays and Sundays plus holidays between Easter and end of October)
    Things to Note
    - At the Cresmino, Funivia bus stop is a farm that sells home-made goat salami. - If the temperatures have been freezing, there will probably be icy spots where the water crosses the path and therefore too dangerous.

    Route Description 

    00:00 From the Cresmino Funivia Bus Stop head South 300m along the road, the trail leaves the road to the left.

    00:30 Arrive at a junction. The trail downhill goes to Cavigliano. Take the trail uphill to the left, direction Streccia.

    00:40 Here is another junction, take the trail on the right toward Streccia. Here starts the most interesting part of the tour along a narrow trail on a cliff wall. There are cable railings. You have to bend down to traverse the two tunnels.

    01:05 Arrive at another junction where there is a shrine. Continue straight on toward Streccia.

    01:25 Arrive at the Monda trail marker. Continue straight on. Here the trail turns northward into the Riei Valley.

    01:30 Reach a junction where the trail marker points only to the downhill trail. Even though it indicates that this is the trail to Streccia, we stay on the upper, non-marked trail, which leads to Streccia from above and is more interesting to walk. The trail can get narrow (also along cliff walls) but not dangerous.

    01:40 Yet another junction, this time we follow the trail to the right, past clusters of stone houses right to the back.

    01:50 Reach the top of the cable car. Here there is a little side trail to the top of the mound, where you can look down into the Maggia Valley. Slightly to the East along the trail is the "heart" of Streccia with its fountain and church / shrine. We continue along the trail between these houses and downward along the creek, where the groomed trail winds between beautiful stone walls (direction Verscio).

    02:15 Reach the stone bridge over the Riei river. Cross the bridge and continue on the other side of the bridge, toward Oratorio Sant'Anna. Continue straight along this trail avoiding side trails until you reach the church perched on the flanks of Monte Zucchero.

    02:35 Reach the Oratorio. There are picnic tables here and a walled-in space in front of the Church (cannot go in the Church) with fantastic views across Locarno and the Maggia Delta.

    From here the trail goes past the Church a bit, and then at the junction take the right hand trail toward Verscio. The trail is totally paved with stones and easy to descend.

    02:55 Reach the top of the village of Verscio. Be careful not to turn left into any of the alleyways. Continue fairly straight until you reach and cross the bridge over the Riei river that comes out of the valley you were just here. From here follow the road straight down to the train station (with a slight right, then left, on the main road).

    03:05 Reach the train station at Verscio.





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