Green River(Creedance Clearwater Revival) - A River Stroll, Badia to La Villa,Dolomites,Italy - 3rd June 2016

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June 3rd 2016
Published: June 9th 2016
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We weren’t sure how the legs and muscles would feel when we woke this morning after yesterdays hike up to the church but surprisingly we guess they were OK.

However, we aren’t going to punish them with two hikes of that nature in two days. Rather today we will take on the more serene river walk which involves an elevation change of 100metres.Gosh we did that in the first couple of hundred metres yesterday.Todays walk will be a ‘pussy’!

We will still go prepared though for a change in the weather should it happen. We were certainly glad to have our rain jackets yesterday even for the light rain that came on for 20 minutes or so.

The weather is the same as yesterday with low cloud here and there on the mountain tops and blue sky breaking through overhead.

It is very quiet up here on the side of the road to San Cassiano, which is a dead end valley so it’s only locals and people starting their hikes further up that use the road. Even the few motorbikes we have seen cannot be heard as we are two of three houses back from the road and these houses are solid in construction and the timbers used seem to swallow up the noise.

Yesterday had been some obscure holiday at least in the Badia area and the shops were closed so today we need to seek out a Despar and top up the groceries. Then we will take on the walk up the river and back down the other side.

As you would expect the river sits in the very bottom of the’ U’ of the valley and although the walk was only going to take us up 100metres over a couple of kilometres the river was still running quite fast. Mind you there is still snow melt happening in the mountains and in the end it has to go somewhere and the river is the lowest point around so it all gets here eventually.

We decided to do the walk taking on the uphill first. It is always good to get the hard bit done first. Anyway the Despar is located at Badia which is down river from where the San Cassiano road enters the main valley.

The start of the river walk and car park was adjacent to a pub and we thought that might be handy to visit when we got back as we would probably be ready for a beer. If it is open, that is.

The path was on the right hand side of the fast flowing river heading upstream and with the trees also to our right the views of the mountains on that side of the valley were mostly obscured. However looking across the river we had views up to the bare rocky mountain face we walked below yesterday. From here it took on a different look being a bit further away and the grandeur and size looked even more impressive.

We had noted from the map that there are fish in the river but were surprised to find a number of ‘private fishing’ signs as we progressed. Whether they were for just a short stretch of the river or whether it was the whole area was unclear. There was no one fishing as we walked up and down the river. It was hard to believe that you could fish in there today with the river running so swiftly anyway.

About half up Gretchen had one of those momentous moments that life brings.

‘We have been here before’! she exclaimed.

Now we had especially made sure that we included the area on the BBA V3 as we had passed through and stayed a couple of nights in 2009 in a location down from Bolzano thinking that was where we could ‘do some walking ‘in the Dolomites. Only to find out that although there are mountains in that area there weren’t any obvious walking trails near where we had stayed.

What made her sure we had been here before was a massive land slip on the left had side of the river which was healing over gradually but was still quite obvious that something pretty dramatic had happened there in recent times.

On the BBA V2 in 2013 we had stayed for 3 nights up in a mountain valley but had no linked it to the next valley down the river and the small village of La Val where we had stayed.

She was sure we had passed the slip as we drove to our apartment in La Val and later when we got home we checked the 2013 blog and sure enough we have been here before! Must be age catching up with at least one of us as I could recall the slip we had passed but couldn’t place the one we now stood opposite as somewhere we had been before.

We crossed the river on a bridge just below the village of La Villa taking in the mountain behind the village which will probably be the target of tomorrows hike. And by the look of the lower gradient of the mountain it will be a hike to remember!

There is a cable way that would be useful to the top of the mountain but it only starts summer operation in a couple of weeks so it will have to be legs to carry us to the top if that is the trail we decide upon.

Even though it was only a 100 metre altitude fall back to the starting point our pace was just a little quicker. It may also have had something to do with the dark clouds that were building at the bottom of the valley and the lower cloud that was now obscuring the rocky peaks. We have got our rain coats in the backpack but it would be better if we completed the walk before any rain arrived.

On the return we did observe the slip area that in late 2008 had apparently destroyed a couple of houses. Nothing had been built in their replacement and perhaps the area has been set aside as a reserve because of that massive slip. One wonders what it was like for the immediate houses just outside the slip zone seeing what was happening at the time.

We got back to the car before the light rain arrived and as the pub wasn’t open drove back home for a cold beer from the fridge. It hadn’t been anywhere near the challenge of yesterday but we still deserved a cold one!

The trail had been quite different to yesterday with spring low alpine flowers in abundance that we hadn’t seen further up the mountains yesterday.

The walk had taken us a couple of hours so we had the rest of the afternoon resting up and reading and preparing ourselves for tomorrows hiking challenge.

PS:the river was sort of green in colour or perhaps more icy blue,never mind,we love this song by the great Creedance Clearwater Revival so enjoy it while you read the blog.As always it is available on YouTube.We didn't see any dancing girls or bullfrogs either!

Additional photos below
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9th June 2016

Where are the buttercups?
Interesting to read of fields of yellow dandelions what about butter cups? Also wondering about St Bernard dogs lumbering along carrying barrels of brandy attached to their collars?
14th June 2016

Couldn't make out any that were buttercups but the dandelions were certainly in profusion.No,didn't meet any St Bernards although we could have done with a brandy after the hike on the third day!

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