Highlights and tour details
The hiking itinerary TOUR DELL’UJA (TU) is called this way because, developing along the solitary side of Val d’Ala, the element of reference is the continuous presence of the striking top of the Uja di Mondrone in the panorama before reaching and touching the pyramid-shaped peak in the last stage. Setting out from the village of Cantoira, the route heads immediately towards the summit of the peak which is home to the Sanctuary of Santa Cristina, religious stronghold which marks the entrance to Val d’Ala and Val Grande di Lanzo before crossing at medium and high altitude longitudinally towards the head of the valley at Pian della Mussa.
It is a highly varied trekking route characterised by a gradual crescendo starting from the more shaded side of the beech forest of Cantoira and of the woods of Ceres, to climb up towards the alpine pastures of Ala di Stura and reach the rocky slopes of the Uja di Mondrone at Balme, to rest on the pastures of Pian della Mussa. The stopover points offer very different opportunities. In the initial stages, there are small tourist facilities and characteristic farm accommodation. At a higher altitude, it is possible to use the assistance of the operators, previously contacted, who are available to reach the hiker and accompany them to the valley bottom to their own facilities along the rural roads that reach the alpine pastures.
In the last two stages, it is possible to use a bivouac that is always open and available to hikers who have to spend a night at high altitude and, finally, the refuges and hotels of Pian della Mussa. The routes follow a trail or trail tracks that are appropriately signposted and partly on unpaved roads to access the pastures and on forest paths. All these tracks can be travelled without the need of equipment in the optimal period from May/June to October, but the length and the difference in altitude of some stages requires a discrete level of training.
The recommended direction of travel is from east to west and so in a progressive crescendo of altitude, in order to tackle some sections uphill that could be more difficult downhill, above all if the weather conditions are not optimal. The itinerary offers the possibility to connect and vary the route by joining, at the departure point of Cantoira, the 3 Vallate of which it could become an alternative extension; on the territory of Balme, with the GTA and with the Alta Via delle Valli di Lanzo and therefore, for those who wish to extend westwards, to the Tour of the Bessanese and to France.
Points of interest
Sanctuary of Santa Cristina, Brunetta Ancient Talc Mine Ecomuseum, Sentiero del Minatore (Miners' Path), Brunetta Talc Mine, Ponte della Vana bridge, Museum of the Lanzo Valleys' inhabitants, 12th Century Bell Tower, Anello di Santa Cristina, Reinforced concrete Viaduct of the Turin - Ceres railway, Madonna del Carmine del Ciavanis, Anello delle Cappelle Alpine Missirola - Urtirè (Alpine Chapel Ring), Erosion Pyramids in Vonzo "Castei d'le Rive", La Gorgia Waterfal in Mondrone, I percorsi delle Meridiane (Sundials tour), Sentiero Pian delle Masche, La Gorgia Waterfall, La Casaforte Ruciàss (fortified house), Alpine Guides Ecomuseum, Anello della Val Servin, Pian della Mussa.
East attachment: From the town of Cantoira reach Trambiè that is home to the public swimming pool, close to the River Stura. Cross the stone and wooden bridge to take trail 307 which leads to the Sanctuary of Santa Cristina. Intermediate attachment: From the town of Ceres you reach Bracchiello where trail 241 starts to continue the itinerary to the west along Val d’Ala. From Ala di Stura on trail 238 which starts from the chief town to climb back up to Alpe d’Attia. It is possible to decide whether to continue the itinerary west or eastwards. West attachment: From Balme reach Pian della Mussa where trail 226 starts close to the Ciriè Refuge. It allows to follow the itinerary in a west to east direction. Taking the route in this direction you will meet several sections that are more difficult downhill, in the high altitude areas along the slopes of the Uja of Mondrone and the lakes of Ru and Mercurin.
Source: CAI di Lanzo
Itinerary code: TDU
Recommended period: From June to September.
Historical interest: Yes
Disabled facilities: No
Classification: Medium and low mountain provincial
Provinces crossed: Torino
Departure, arrival and municipalities crossed
- Tour dell'Uja (TDU) (36,00 km)
- Tour dell'Uja: Stage 1 Borgata Trambiè - Borgata Bracchiello (11,60 km)
- Tour dell'Uja: Stage 2 Borgata Bracchiello - Alpe d’Attia (8,30 km)
- Tour dell'Uja: Stage 3 Alpe d’Attia - Bivacco Molino (9,00 km)
- Tour dell'Uja: Stage 4 Bivacco Molino - Rifugio Città di Ciriè (8,30 km)