Saturday, 24 August 2013

Maritime Alps - Rifugio Questa to Rifugio Remondino

Sat. 24 Aug
Laghi di Fremamorta from Colletto di Valasco
We left the refuge after a good nights sleep and breakfast of bread, toast and and jam. The path to Rifugio Remondino (our destination for today) took us down towards Valasco for a short way, then turning east skirting the crags below T. Di Tablasses on the N22 and into Valle Morta on the N18. This is a dry valley with patches of grey dust covered snow. The route followed an old military road over Colletto di Valasco (2429m).

Looking north towards Colletto di Valasco
from Laghi Fremammorta
Over the col the descent was gentle towards the 3 lakes of Laghi di Fremamorta. We took a detour to Biv. J. Guiglia a steel shed that contained 9 beds and a central table all in the space of a garden shed!

We continued to the last of the 3 lakes then headed North on th N26b which turned E below Spechio di Fremamorta. The Junction at Gias della Losa with the N26 could be easily missed but the path ahead takes an incline over a rocky buttress. 
The descent was steep on a narrow unmade path then joined the main N15 after a series of switch backs into V di Ciriegia and the valley below Rifugio Regina Elena. We stopped under the shade of a tree for lunch.

Lindsey was keen to keep going so we only stopped long enough to eat, then started the 700m climb up to the refuge on the N11. The ascent was about 2km and relentlessly steep with tantising views of the refuge above that seemed to get no closer. Despite this we managed to keep within the 2 hour suggested time on the sign post, completing it in 1hr
45 min. The cloud had come into the valley giving us a cooler ascent and it started to rain heavily just after our arrival.

Rifugio Remondino
The location of the refuge is spectacular, perched high on a rock overlooking the Piano della Casa del Re and the mountains along the French border. Behind the refuge, we were surrounded by steep rock and scree slopes and cirques full of snow. This was our route for tomorrow! Thunder and lightening roared around the mountains and rain seeped in through the windows. Chamois came withn 30 m of the but but vanished once the storm started. Rifugio Remondino (2430m) is a modern 3 storey tower the beds are in dormitories. Ours had 6 beds, showers cost 5euros. 
Ascent 1172m
Descent 1004m
Dist. 12.3 km

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