Friday, October 3, 2014

Casera Senons MTB

Last year I rode up to Claut and then continued along Torrente Settimana to Rifugio Pussa.  Later I decide the best MTB ride from there would be the forest road to Casera Senons.  Today I finally got around to trying it.

I was well-warmed up by the time I reached Rifugio Pussa so I stopped to explore the meadows surrounded by mountains along Torrente Settimana .  Really pretty spot.  Then I headed up the dirt road toward Casera Senons.  The road is fairly steep gravel, then switches to concrete on the steeper sections.  There are switchbacks climbing through the fir forest, and as you get higher instead of concrete the steep bits are paved with large stones without mortar: incredibly bumpy even with a suspension fork.  Before long it's nothing but gravel even on the steeps.  Very hard because you must power up them seated  and half of your power is wasted in wheel-slippage.

Finally the steepness lessens as you enter the beautiful pastures below Casera Senons.  This is one of the loveliest places I've ever seen: autumn leaves and rocky mountains against a blue sky, all rising from a rolling green meadow.  I heard a stag deeply bellowing to attract mates, a very wild and primitive sound.  Tried to record it with camera but all you can hear is wind noise.

On the way back down I saw a black grouse with red head (gallo forcello) awkwardly winging from tree to tree.  They fly kinda like a chicken.

The ride home was long but mercifully downhill (mostly).  May try a hike from Pussa next time - Monte Pramaggiore climb starts there.      

Above Pussa, the rolling meadows along the trail

Looking across the lower meadows toward the west

After climbing to 1324 meters you reach Casera Senons

Ridge to south

Abandoned cows' stall with stone walls and wood shingle roof

Cima Nartais above stall

Close up of Cima with autumn color

View to northeast Vetta Fornezze

From Valle di Senons: Monte Chiarescon

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