As the aerial cable-car of San Carlo slowly ascends to Robiei, one is surprised by the massive Basodino glacier that one suddenly sees. This high alpine hike begins at the artificial lake of Robiei, at an altitude of 1891 m.a.s.l. The hike follows the lakes Lago Bianco and Lago Sfundau all the way to the Cristallina Pass, 2568 m.a.s.l. Initially, there is still some very sparse vegetation but soon the area becomes more and more barren, with only rocks and pebbles littering the ground. In the background one constantly sees Mt Cristallina, the massive back of Mt. Basodino and to the North the Gotthard chain. Descend via the Val Torta to Capanna Cristallina, an ideal resting spot before one attempts the last piece of the tour. Passing through the Alpe Cristallina one winds up in Ossasco in the Val Bedretto. The entire trip from Robiei to Ossasco takes about 5 hours, and the trails are well-marked. But be sure to take along rain gear, squalls sometimes arise out of nowhere bringing clouds and fog with them. It is also advisable to carefully listen to the weather advisory prior to leaving on this tour.
How to get there:
Drive or take public transportation from Locarno to San Carlo in the Val Bavona via Maggia/Bignasco. In San Carlo take the aerial cable-car to Robiei
The careful planning of a tour will ensure that you also derive the maximum pleasure and enjoyment from it. Please take the time to contact the local information centre and enquire about route and weather conditions before setting off. Your intended trail may be fully or partially closed, depending on the time of year and weather conditions.