Itinerary for trail runners
Nestled in spectacular mountain scenery characterised by rocks, cliffs and wild nature, San Carlo in the Bavona valley is where you'll find the lower terminus of the aerial cableway that ascends to Robièi, the starting point of this tour.
Certainly the most convenient and energy-saving way of reaching Robièi, the cableway offers a chance to view this fascinating tract of nature from the air. It takes just 15 minutes to reach the altitude of 1900 m: delightful Robièi is at the foot of the Basodino glacier and near the Basodino dam, which affords a wonderful view of the Ticino Alps. The Basodino Glacier, the most impressive and important glacier in Canton Ticino, has a shimmering white peak that reaches up to 3273 m before a magnificent arena of granite and gneiss.
The trail starts at the upper terminus of the cableway and follows the left-hand bank of Lake Robièi. Right at the beginning there’s a lengthy ascent with an altitude gain of 500 metres, followed by a slight descent to the lake. A long section of asphalted road leads past the lake. At the fork, take the unsurfaced path that rises slightly again instead of following the road to Lake Bianco. The lake glistens in the sun and crystals sparkle on the path.
Robièi is known for its mineral wealth. Navigating gentle ups and downs, you follow partially exposed passages past Lake Nero before tackling the short ascent to the highest point of the tour. On reaching the end of the lake, the path turns off to the Alpe Lielp, where you encounter cows, goats and pigs: this is where the excellent Vallemaggia cheese, butter and ricotta are produced. From Alpe Lielp you can continue downhill to the Basodino hut, looking out for marmots, ibexes and chamois as you go. At the upper terminus station, take the cableway back down to San Carlo.