Valsesia Natural Park – Val Sesia – Piedmont
A typically mountainous protected area of 6,500 hectares. Hiking, climbing and winter skiing
Alta Valsesia Natural Park is a regional protected area in Piedmont.
The Park extends in Val Sesia for 6,500 hectares a typically mountain and high-mountain area ranging from an altitude of 900 meters of the valley floor to the 4,600 meters of Monte Rosa.
The park includes:
– the upper part of the valleys forming Sesia river basin and its left tributaries: Sermenza and Mastallone streams
– the upper part of Val Grande, with Piode, Sesia and Vigne glaciers, and Turlo valley
– Rima in Val Sermenza high pastures
– most of the municipalities of Carcoforo in Val d’Egua, Rimasco and Rimella in Val Mastallone
– the Roj valley in Mastallone valley
Alta Valsesia Park touches 6 municipalities: Alagna Valsesia, Alto Sermenza, Carcoforo, Fobello, Rimella and Valstrona.
The inhabitants of Valsesia are descendants of the Walser, a population of German origin who migrated to these valleys in the thirteenth century. The Walser culture is still present and recognizable by the characteristic wooden houses (now made of stone), by the High German dialects, by the ancient and traditional costumes. The next Walser Feast will be in Macugnaga at the beginning of July 2021 >>>
The Park offers various facilities available to visitors:
– Visitor center of the alp park at Fum Bitz (1603 m), near Alagna, open in summer: with an illustrative itinerary of the fauna living in the park with a botanical garden.
– Naturalistic Museum in Carcoforo: in which the environmental characteristics of the park are illustrated.
– Park visitor center at Roj dairy in Fobello: dedicated to the human presence and agro-pastoral activities.
– The Vallè refuge in Rima (2175 m)
– The Massero refuge in Carcoforo (2082 m)
– The Park House at Brusà in Rima (1400 m)
The Alta Valsesia Park offers the opportunity to practice all the activities related to the mountains, alpine and cross-country skiing, easy walks, and climbing at all levels. Hikers can appreciate the Great Crossing of Valsesia, a 113 km route divided into 11 stages, each with a foothold at the end.
Flora and fauna
For its great variety of altitudes, from the valley floor to the glaciers, the park hosts many different species of animals, plants and flowers…
Plants and flowers
At high altitude, there are plants typical of rocky areas such as mugwort, gentian, saxifrage, etc., morainic and detrital areas (alpine androsace, saxifrage sulphine, glacier buttercup, etc.) and snowfield areas (alpine veronica, soldanella alpina, tussilage from the Alps, etc.).
At a lower altitude in the areas of alpine pasture there are the varied fescue and the curved sedge, alternating with areas with shrub vegetation, such as the green alder, and rhododendron and dwarf azalea bushes.
Lower down there are larch woods interspersed with wide subalpine pastures of golden oats, bistorta, alchemilla, sorrel, clover.
The wild and largely high altitude territory hosts mammals such as the ibex, the chamois, the marmot, the fox, the stoat, the marten, the weasel, the snow vole, the white hare. And birds like the golden eagle, the sparrow hawk, the rock ptarmigan, the black grouse, the rock partridge.
If you like the “real”, no-frills mountain, with a genuine culture and tradition, Alta Valsesia is the right place for you.
What if you get hungry?
A good opportunity to taste the traditional food of Piedmont>>> and its excellent wines>>>
(Photos from the website of the Sesia Valley Protected Areas