Piano Ruggio is a vast prairie at high altitude (1535 meters above sea level), between the peaks of Coppola of Paola, Timpone della Capanna, Serra del Prete (2181 meters above sea level) and Grattaculo. During the winter season this area is covered by snow. In spring littered with a wonderful variety of flowers, shining in the fall in thousands of colors. The vegetation is dominated by sprawling beech and coniferous forests. This plateau is the starting point for the classic trekking excursions in the Pollino area. From here you can reach the peaks, but also the Belvedere of Malvento, a panoramic terrace that can be reached in half an hour on foot, from where you can admire the pines Loricati, without having to adjust to significant height differences. On the western edge of Piano Ruggio is the famous mountain hut De Gasperi, a meeting place for hikers and a must to recharge yourself after the excursion.
Continue on the road that leads from Piano Ruggio to "Madonna del Pollino". After a few kilometers you reach the "Colle dell'Impiso", which is the starting point for the most exciting hikes in the park. This point is indeed the main access road to the “Piani di Pollino”, passing through the "Piani di Vacquarro". Once you reach the "Piani", the choice of trails is really generous: Monte Pollino, Serra Dolcedorme, Serra di Crispo and Serra Ciavole with peaks over 2000 meters above sea level, which can be reached from here. For those who prefer less difference in level, but do not want to miss beautiful landscapes, the "Giardino degli Dei" and the "Grande Porta del Pollino" near the Serra delle Ciavole would be the best. From “Colle dell'Impisto” you can reach “Colle Gaudolino” (1684 meters above sea level), a vast plateau at the foot of the western wall of Monte Pollino, where there is a wooden shelter accessible to visitors. Worth knowing: The name "Impiso" derives from the term "impiccato" (hanged), because on this hill the brigands were executed until the end of the 19th century.
They are two of the most rewarding routes in the middle Pollino. The classic paths start on the east side (through the Casino Toscano and the Grande Porta del Pollino), from the northeast (from Lake Duglia or Lago Fondo), from the north (from Acquatremola and over Piano Iannace) or from the west (start in Colle Impiso and by "Piano Iannace" by Pollino). You can also reach the Serra della Ciavole through the beech forest "Fagosa", where you can admire the "snake trees" of Piani di Acquafredda. These "two Serre" (the most oriental) can also be reached during the winter time. For this you should be equipped with the necessary snowshoes (provided by our staff) or ski mountaineering equipment.
The highest and most representative peaks of Pollino. Reaching the summit is a real challenge, but there are also the less demanding variants, such as the path that leads through Colle Gaudolino to the summit of Monte Pollino. The Dolcedorme is undoubtedly the highest peak of the Pollino Park with 2,267 m. above the sea level. From this point you can see everything. The most demanding variant is the "most directly", which leads from Valle Piana to the south ridge "dei loricati" and requires a difference in altitude of 1,400 meters. On the way back we follow a ring road that leads up the ridge of the "Murge di Celsa Bianca" up to the Varco del Pollinello before returning to Valle Piana.
Difficulty: EE (high) - Lenght: 12 km - Difference in level: 1.400 m - Duration: 9 h
REQUIRED EQUIPMENT: hiking boots (sturdy shoes), rucksack (backpack), hat and anorak. Depending on the season and weather conditions, it is advisable to carry a thermal jacket, fleece and quilt. The trekking poles are provided by the guides.