Text and Photos by The Pill Outdoor Journal
Of the many beautiful places that rise above Lake Garda, Monte Altissimo, at 2,078 metres above sea level, is one of the most fascinating and amazing to explore. Easily accessible from both Nago and Rovereto in Trentino, this mountain is a popular destination for many locals, but also for some tourists who can’t wait to see the lake from a different perspective.
There are many ways to reach the summit and on this day of hiking we decided to discover the two most popular! The two routes start at different points, but very close to each other.
The first one starts from Rifugio Graziani, a very comfortable place with a large car park. The start of the second one is in Bocca di Navene, about 1km from the refuge, right along the same provincial road that takes you up the mountain. This second itinerary also has a small car park, located in a lay-by on the side of the road, but we advise you, if you plan to start from this point, to arrive early in the morning, otherwise it will be difficult to find a place.
What’s special about these two routes, however, is that they can be joined into a single circle route and we’ll explain how we did it!
First of all, we parked our vehicle at Rifugio Graziani and took path 633 towards Rifugio Damiano Chiesa. The itinerary is easy, the path is wide and unpaved, besides having a constant steepness, it also has the merit of being suitable for all ages. On this side of the mountain the ascent is shorter and more moderate, but it is still a 500m difference in height, so it is easy, but perhaps not for everyone. Along this route you will be able to admire both the landscapes towards Lake Garda and those of Vallagarina.
After 1 hour of walking, many hairpin bends and some obligatory shots, you will arrive at the Rifugio Damiano Chiesa. A few metres behind the building you will find the cross that marks the summit! We advise you not to stop here, but to go a few metres further on, towards the lake, to admire one of the most beautiful views that Trentino has to offer.
After a nice break, a few laughs and a few minutes to enjoy the view we set off for the descent which, against all expectations, will be even more beautiful than the summit!
After 500 m from the summit you can find path 651 to Bocca Navene and this will be your descent. The special feature of this route is that it descends along the ridges of the Lastè di Tolghe and has various viewpoints, as well as a herd of chamois that are very fond of the area and make it their home every year. This route, however, is slightly longer than the other, so it will take you about an hour and a half to reach the Graziani refuge. We can assure you, however, that it will be well worth it. After just a few metres you will realise that the effort will be worth it. Because of the many places with overhangs and ravines, you should proceed with caution, especially if there are children with you.
After about an hour of walking, many views and breathtaking panoramas, you will arrive in a small wood, do not worry and keep following the path, because it will bring you right back to the main road, a few metres below Rifugio Graziani.
These two routes are usually described in the guidebooks as separate, but for a more exploratory experience and to fully discover all the beauty of this mountain, we recommend you do them this way!
Caterina, volleyball player: “I have always loved doing sport, but for some years now what I love most is a day outdoors in the mountains. On the Altissimo I tried Rewoolution merino wool and what I loved most was its breathability! It never leaves that nasty damp feeling on you.”
Luca, trekking and hiking enthusiast: “I’ve been going to the mountains since I was little and as I’ve grown up I’ve continued to explore and seek out new adventures. I recently tested Rewoolution products on Monte Altissimo and I had a great time! Despite the cold and windy weather, they kept me warm.”