Daily Archives: 14 August 2015

Incomplete maps

August 14th

Almost a disaster – we ended up in the wrong valley!  How?

There was a thunderstorm last night and it rained on and off all day.  Sally and Roger offered to take my car (still with kayak) to the Bregaglia valley where we should be in two days.  After a lot of sorting out of clothes, maps, food, etc we all left for the Splügen Pass.  Sally and Roger left us here and drove on in two cars.

Very strong cold wind, some rain.  No summits possible so we took a lower level route to the Rifugio Bertacchi.  Here we sat out a thunderstorm and heavy rain, and left again at 2.20 p.m.

Two very recent Swiss maps (2009 and 2014) showed a marked trail from the Passo di Niemet, half an hour from the hut, over the Passo di Sterla into the Valle di Lei, without any other paths.  At the top of the climb we were in fog and greeted with a very strong wind and driving rain, and followed the red/white and yellow marks. In these conditions we must have missed a turnoff.  Later, much lower down, we emerged – very wet – from the fog and began to realise something was wrong – too late!  No other option but to go down to the village of Madèsimo (as it turned out to be) and find somewhere to sleep.

Night: Hotel Ristorante K2, Madèsimo

Distance:  22,0 km
Walking time:  6 hours 40 minutes
Vertical distance:  1140 m uphill; 1710 m downhill