1105-Tour delle Maresse

Valle del Chiese


Cima Maresse, a mountain peak of merely 2,101 metres located in the southernmost part of the Adamello massif, may not be the most beautiful mountaintop in the area, but it offers a spectacular view of everything that lies beneath, stretching from Valle Aperta all the way to Valle del Chiese.

The Maresse Tour offers a 47-km cycle path climbing almost 2,100 metres ‒ only experienced bikers with excellent physical shape and technical skills should attempt this ride. The itinerary follows a series of old military tracks through the pass of Sella di Bondolo and the military stronghold Bocca di Bosco, which will put your athletic skills to the test.
If you are riding an eMTB, make sure to bring along a spare battery. Should you feel less confident about your stamina level, however, you may choose to drive to Malga Table instead, which will save you a good 1,100-metre climb. Nevertheless, the rest of the tour is still quite challenging.


The trailhead is located in the town of Cologna, and more specifically in the parking lot of the tourist office on the main road leading through Valle del Chiese. A narrow paved road running alongside the Chiese river will take you through the town of Prezzo and all the way up to the Bonipratiplateau ‒ which literally translates as “good meadows”. This alpine pasture stretches over a pleasantly flat area, very popular among locals for Sunday picnics.
It also hosts two mountain huts, or rifugi: rifugio “Boniprati” and rifugio “Lupi di Toscana”. The latter’s name, which literally translated means “wolves of Tuscany”, is a tribute to the Italian battalion of the same name that stationed here during World War I to stop the advance of the Austrian army, as one can read on the building’s wallboard.

After enjoying a well-deserved, energising break here, you may resume your ride on a paved path climbing steeply to Malga Table, where you may purchase some local mountain cheese.
The tour continues on a gravel road climbing through enchanting sceneries all the way up to Malga Clef. On your left, the old military track offers a smooth ride to the pass of Sella di Bondolo, but from here to Bocca di Bosco the road is steep and very irregular, making it a particularly arduous stretch even if you are riding an eMTB. Your efforts will pay off instantly, however, as you enjoy the view of the mountain landscape on the way, with its inebriating green veil, interrupted here and there by imposing rocky patches.

At Bocca di Bosco the path runs alongside a set of disused Italian military installations and continues on irregular terrain until reaching Bocca di Clevet.
Inexperienced bikers may find this stretch quite challenging, both uphill and downhill. After passing at the feet of Cima Maresse and while approaching Cima Pissola, the path takes a sharp turn to the right and continues downhill to the mountain hut named Malga Pissola.
This track is smooth and easy at first, but becomes steeper and narrower as you ride on, with outcropping rocks and tree roots obstructing the way. Experts may find it an exciting challenge, but everyone else may have to dismount and pull their bikes. In the next few years the path should be widened and made suitable for bikers of any level.

Near Malga Pissola a gravel road leads you back to Malga Table. Those of you who did not start here, but rode the whole way, may take the direct road to Castel Condino, following a steep and sometimes bumpy track through the wood ‒ for experienced bikers only. The road inclination decreases towards the end.

Before reaching Castel Condino, a cycle path on gravel road runs steeply downhill and then briefly uphill again, alongside a gurgling creek, until it reaches the town of Brione. Here the old military track will take you back to Condino, joining the cycle path that leads to Cologna
This is a tour of great difficulty, with challenging stretches that require an elevated level of expertise. 
Author: Uli Stanciu


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