Tuesday, June 13, 2017

A Hike from Maresana to Selvino

Hiking route from Maresana to Selvino along trail 533.View of Salmezza from 533.
Left: Hiking route from Maresana to Selvino along trail 533. Right: View of Salmezza from trail 533.


Length: ~14 km (8.7 mi)
Duration: 5 hours one way
Elevation: minimum @Maresana (546 m) (1,790 ft), maximum @ Salmezza 1057 m (3,467 ft), total elevation gain 857 m (2,812 ft)
Location: Italy, Lombardy, Bergamo, Parco dei Colli di Bergamo and north

The Walk

A lot of our hikes start or end on Sentiero - Trail 533. It’s a major hiking trail that’s close Bergamo city center, easy to get to, and from the 533 you can connect up to the larger network of trails. Trail 533 connects Bergamo (Monterosso neighborhood / via Quintino Alto to be exact) to Selvino. We tried a week ago to do the walk but flopped and made it only to Monte di Nese (see A Short Hike from Bergamo to Monte di Nese). This time we got a lift to Maresana to cut the city walking out as well as starting out a little earlier in the day.

Trail 533 is relatively easy to follow. It’s not too steep and a large part of it is under the cover of trees. The trail drops you on the southwest side of Selvino. Once you reach Selvino, there is another kilometer or so to get to the top of the funivia (cable car) to head back to Bergamo. We, fortunately, got picked up by the partner of our hiking companion.

We drove around Selvino looking for a restaurant, which were all inexplicably closed on a Tuesday. We called it quits in Selvino and headed to the Oca Bianca Osteria in Treviolo. Oca is “goose” in Italian, and as you might expect, the menu featured a couple of goose-related dishes. All in all, a delicious dinner in a nice atmosphere made a great way to finish the hike.


You can take the number 6 or 9 bus to Quintino Alto and catch trail 533 from there to start the hike. From Selvino, take the funivia (cable car) to get down to Albino, and from there take the tram back to Bergamo. To get to the Oca Bianca from Bergamo, take a number 5 bus.


During the hike, we saw at least 20 plants we could identify. Among them, the usual suspects (clover, rose, and vetch) as well as four different types of orchids. Feeding on the flowers, we saw  [Zygaenidae] Zygaena filipendulae or the Six-spot Burnet moth, a black and red-colored day-flying moth.

[Family] Genus species – Common name in English (Common name in Italian)

[Asteraceae] Arnica montana – Wolf’s Bane, Mountain Arnica (Arnica)
[Apiaceae] Astrantia major – Great Masterwort (Astranzia maggiore)
[Asteraceae] Centaurea montana – Perennial Cornflower (Fiordaliso montano)
[Asteraceae] Cirsium erisithales – Yellow Thistle (Cardo zampo d’orso)
[Campanulaceae] Phyteuma sp. likely scheuchzeri
[Caprifoliaceae] Knautia arvensis – Field Scabiosa (Ambretta comune)
[Fabiaceae] Lotus corniculatus – Garden Bird’s Foot Trefoil (Ginestrino)
[Fabiaceae] Securigera varia – Purple crownvetch ()
[Fabiaceae] Trifolium rubens – Red Trefoil (Trifoglio rosseggiante)
[Geraniaceae] Geranium sanguineum – Bloody Crane’s Bill Geranium (Geranium sanguineum)
[Lamiaceae] Thymus vulgaris – Common Thyme (Timo commune)
[Liliaceae] Ornithogalum pyrenaicum – Spiked Star of Bethlehem (Latte di gallina dei Pirenei)
[Orchidaceae] Anacamptis pyramidalis – Pyramidal Orchid (Orchide piramide)
[Orchidaceae] Dactylorhiza fuchsii or maculata
[Orchidaceae] Gymnadenia conopsea – Fragrant Orchid (Manina rosea)
[Orchidaceae] Platanthera chlorantha – Greater Butterfly Orchid (Palantera verdastra)
[Plantaginaceae] Plantago media – Lamb’s Tongue (Piantaggine media)
[Rosaceae] Aruncus dioicus – Goatsbeard (Barba di capra)
[Rosaceae] Filipendula vulgaris – Dropwort or Fern-leaf Dropwort Filipendola)
[Rosaceae] Rosa canina – Dog Rose (Rosa selvatica comune)

Anacamptis pyramidalis. Dactylorhiza (either fuchsii or maculata).Gymnadenia conopsea
Orchids along the trail. Left: Anacamptis pyramidalis. Center: Dactylorhiza (either fuchsii or maculata). Right: Gymnadenia conopsea.

Dactylorhiza (either fuchsii or maculata).Dactylorhiza leaves. Platanthera chlorantha
More orchids: Left: Dactylorhiza (either fuchsii or maculata). Center Left: Dactylorhiza leaves. Center right and right: Platanthera chlorantha.

Arnica montana Arnica montanaCirsium erisithales
Left and center: Arnica montana. Right: Cirsium erisithales.

Aruncus dioicusFilipendula vulgaris
Left: Aruncus dioicus. Right: Filipendula vulgaris.

Astrantia majorAstrantia major
Left and right: Astrantia major.

Plantago mediaOrnithogalum pyrenaicum
Left: Plantago media. Right: Ornithogalum pyrenaicum.

Rosa caninaSecurigera varia
Left: Rosa canina. Right: Securigera varia.

Centaurea montana Zygaena filipendulae – Six-spot Burnet feeding on Succisa pratensis.Trifolium rubens
Left: Centaurea montana. Center: Zygaena filipendulae – Six-spot Burnet feeding on Knautia. Right: Trifolium rubens.

Geranium sanguineumLotus corniculatus
Left: Geranium sanguineum. Right: Lotus corniculatus.

Phyteuma (likely scheuchzeri) Phyteuma (likely scheuchzeri)Thymus vulgaris
Left and center: Phyteuma (likely scheuchzeri). Right: Thymus vulgaris.

Trail 533 - Nearing Salmezza. Trail 533 - Looking northeast over Selvino.
Views of trail 533. Left: Nearing Salmezza. Right: Looking northeast over Selvino.

Trail 533 - A steep part between Monte di Nese and Salmezza. Trail 533 - Near Ca' del Latte heading to Olera.
Views of trail 533. Left: A steep part between Monte di Nese and Salmezza. Right: Near Ca' del Latte heading to Olera.

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