“Every autumn, after the chestnut harvest, the valleys were crossed by the long lines of seasonal emigrants on their way to the border, to France. From the upper Varaita Valley, the whole family would emigrate: they would take their newborn babies with them, in their cradles, as if moving from one house to another”.
Borgata Paraloup is located within a dense network of paths and small mule-tracks that connect the various hamlets, the same ones that the mountaineers and partisans used to walk, cycle, ride on horseback or with snowshoes and ski mountaineering in winter.
The closest and most popular destinations are Alpe di Rittana and Mount Tajarè.
Among the partisan paths, there is the path called “Sentiero della libertà” (freedom path), which starts from Madonna del Colletto in Valle Gesso, passes through Festiona, crosses the Stura river and arrives at Valloriate and Paraloup and then continues towards San Matteo in Valle Grana, retracing the route of the partisans group of Italia Libera.
The Resistance Route
Via della Resistenza is the path that joins Borgata Paraloup with Chiotti di Valloriate in about an hour’s walk.
Along this path, it is possible to use the app Storieincammino, the first app that increases the mountain. At some stations, interactive poles framed with the smartphone open up augmented reality paths with exclusive historical multimedia archive materials that tell the story of those places, in those precise contexts.
The App was conceived and created by Kosmoki with the scientific coordination of Lucio Monaco, son of the Paraloup partisan Nino Monaco, in collaboration with the Polo del 900 of Turin as part of the project Alt(r)e visioni, alte storie.
The selected videos and texts are edited by Fabio Gianotti and Lucio Monaco and the illustrations by Sara Chiesa.
Before setting off, pack your earphones and download the app available for Android devices (Lollypop 5.0 software or higher) from this link:
Another route is the MigraTour, an excursion itinerary linking Caraglio (IT) to Barcelonnette (FR) developed as part of the Migraction project, promoted by Vinadio Town Council in partnership with the Ville de Barcelonnette, the Fondazione Filatoio Rosso, the Fondazione Nuto Revelli onlus and A.C.T.I. Teatro Indipendente, and co-financed by the European Union.
It is a journey in nine stages along easy paths, in the footsteps of the people who crossed the mountains in search of fortune, a journey through memory with a common theme: that of emigration, abandonment and return to the mountains.
The route, which can be followed on foot or by mountain bike, is aimed at tourists looking for immersive experiences, unspoilt landscapes, cultural and gastronomic experiences. On the way, you can discover the magnificent fortification system of Vinadio, the oldest silk factory in Europe which can be visited in Caraglio, the history of the Resistance narrated in Paraloup, the tenacity of mountain life told in the Eco-museum of sheep farming in Pontebernardo and, finally, the life paths of the people of the Ubaye at the Musée de la Vallée in Barcelonnette.
But you will also be able to glimpse and bring back to life, with the power of thought and imagination, the villages mentioned in Nuto Revelli’s “Il mondo dei Vinti” (The World of the Losers) as well as taste unique typical products such as crousét, a typical concave-shaped pasta, and Sambucan lamb, a breed of ancient origin from the Stura Valley.
Other destinations that can be reached and paths that can be followed from Borgata Paraloup are:
- Alpe di Rittana 1797 mt
- Mont Tajare’ 1654 mt
- Beccas del Mezzodì 1931 mt
- the Ortiga Pass 1774 mt
- the Rosset Bivouac 1900 mt
- il Mount Tamone 1393 mt
- Traverses in Val Grana a Comboscuro and Castelmagno
- Lou Viage trail
For mountain bike lovers, we are a stop-off point for the Tajarè Bike Park, which covers five municipalities in the Stura Valley: Gaiola, Valloriate, Moiola, Rittana and Roccasparvera.
If you visit their website, you will find lots of technical information on the itineraries.
Snowshoe hire: cost € 7 per person, € 5 for those who eat and spend the night in Paraloup.