7.26.2017

Mountain - Hiking Itineraries: Lago Scaffaiolo at night

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Walking at night in the middle of a forest, no light but the tiny strip of starred sky just over the trail, no voice, noise but your steps on the invisible ground. 
In a group, yep, but now invible or made of vanishing ghosts, few steps away, aside because you know but you can't be sure until you don't touch them for a mistake, or you step on them... and the laughs explode like a bomb. 
Image may contain: mountain, sky, nature and outdoorWhy are we walking so fast?! probably because each one feels compelled to keep close to the one in front... that they can't really see. Beautiful but stressing, I'd prefer a slower pace to apreciate the night. But it's very late already, about 2 am, and it takes more then 1 hour driving from the place where we parked our cars to Florence. 
Image may contain: mountain, sky, nature and outdoorWe started our trekking at the sunset from Doganaccia (1547 m), on the steep CAI 6 path. We reached Passo della Croce Arcana (1675 m) and took a group picture at the momument for the First World War deads. Then we walked on the crest (CAI - GEA 00) climbing to the summit of Monte Spigolino (1827 m), the highest peak of the day. 
The view was simply stunning!
From Passo della Calanca (1737 m) we followed the crest to our final aim, the Lago Scaffaiolo(1790 m).
Image may contain: sky, cloud, nature and outdoorThere is a Rifugio CAI here, "Duca degli Abruzzi", the oldest refugee in the Appennino, but we sat by the lake and shared the food we had brought.
I felt a deep envie looking at the coloured tents illuminated from inside by the front lamps of lucky people preparing for to sleep...
Image may contain: sky, mountain, grass, plant, nature and outdoorInsteed we had a coffee by the refugee and we started our way down. Back to Passo della Calanca (00 CAI-GEA) we took the CAI path n. 66... then I don't know... we walk in silence and in the relative dark of the forest at night. 
Image may contain: sky, mountain, nature and outdoorIt isn't the first time I walk at night without a lamp, not even in the mountains, but it is the first time I do it in a group, and that makes a big difference. 
As I said, I feel the pressure. I keep thinking: "There is no need to go so fast!", still I keep speeding up, just like the others. 
Finally I slow down, I breath, I look up to the tiny starred strip of sky, I find my pace. Vanishing ghosts pass by. I think now I'm at the back of the invisible group. No matter. 
Image may contain: mountain, sky, grass, outdoor and natureThe night is warm, and cosy. I'm thankful.
....
...especially thankful to Andare a zonzo and to our guide Tommaso who organised and led this intense experience!

Time: 7 hours
Km: 18
Elevation:  700 m
Where: Appennino (Pistoia, Toscana, Italy)
Start and finish: Doganaccia (1547 m)
Summit: Monte Spigolino (1827 m)
Signals: CAI (red and white) 6, 00 and 61
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