This beautiful hike develops almost entirely in the territory of the Municipality of Canal San Bovo, in one of the wildest, natural and least tourist areas of the Vanoi Valley. The only drawback of this loop is perhaps the long return it features, even if… what route on the Lagorai would it be, without a long return?
The itinerary starts from the village of Zortèa (1,050 m asl), the highest of the villages belonging to Canal San Bovo and located on the sunny alluvial terraces of the valley of Lòzen. From the church of Zortèa, in an area where it is easy to park your own car, take the road to the right, above the church towards the west, until reaching the hamlet called Zortèa “de Mèz”, located to the north. The road ends at the edge of the forest, at the last group of houses where there is also a water pipe. The route continues along an almost flat path that crosses the stream of Rio Val Deneura and then enters the valley of Val Zortèi, heading towards Forcella Valsórda (Signpost No. 344). The trail gently ascends along the mule track of the Signpost No. 344 on the left side of Val Zortèi; once by the shrine of Sant’Antonio, the path starts being steeper. After a few wide bends, on the grassy side of an evident ridge, the path leads to the ridge of Spiadi, that divides Val Zortei from Alpe Boalón. Shortly after, you reach the junction with the path of the Signpost No. 347 which you take to the right, towards the east, towards Forcella Valsórda. After about 2 and a half hours from the start, in a landscape also characterized by the symbols of a forgotten rural economy with its huts now disused, the route arrives at the gap of Forcella Valsórda.
From Forcella Valsórda (2,095 m asl) the panorama opens wide over the valley that carries the same name, the summits of Alpe Tognola, Fólga and Scanaiòl to the east. In order to reach the summit of Cima di Valsórda, the trail proceeds towards the west, on a ridge full of Italian trenches and remains of the Great War. From its 2,287 m of altitude, the summit offers a magnificent sight, ranging from the peaks of the Pala Group and the range of Lagorai – from Monte Cauriòl to Monte Colbricón -. On the opposite side, a magnificent panorama opens onto the imposing massif of Cima d’Asta.
From the top of Cima Valsórda, you initially continue towards the south – west, always among remains of the Great War, along the ridge which forms a saddle at around 2000 meters. From the saddle, it is possible to glimpse a military mule track that descends slightly to the left of the ridge (on the southern side of the mountain) and which the route follows downhill for a stretch until the ridge above drops to the same level as the road. The road – unmarked but clearly visible and in good condition – continues descending into the woods until it reaches the hut of Malga Fiàmena (1,750 m asl), from which you can admire a beautiful view over the village of Caoria.
From the hut the path begins the long return that leads back to Zortèa. The return begins by taking the gravel road on the left to the south which, after a very first uphill stretch, begins to drop in altitude. About 3 km from Malga Fiàmena, the track reaches Malga Boalón (1,686 m asl), which can be seen on the left of the forest road. From the pastures of Malga Boalón, the route continues downhill along the Signpost No. 347 which, on the left side of the Val di Scala, becomes a paved road. At the next crossroads, the trail leaves the paved road and keeps following the Signpost No. 347 towards Prade / Cicóna, heading south – east, to the hill of Col delle Mede (1,486 m asl). From the hill, the route proceeds to the left, continuing the descent until the edge of the village of Cicóna, to the north of which the road makes a bend where a wide path begins – always downhill – which leads back to the beginning of Val Zortèi, on the asphalted road SP 239 dir, leading directly back to Zortèa, in less than a kilometer.
- From the village of Zortèa (1,050 m asl), head northwest to the hamlet of Zortèa “de Mèz”, then take the path of the Signpost No. 344 northwards,
- Climb along the mule track of the Signpost No. 344, passing by the shrine of Sant’Antonio, heading towards Forcella Valsórda,
- At the junction with the Signpost No. 347, continue ascending along the Signpost No. 347, on the right towards the north east, until reaching the gap of Forcella Valsórda,
- From Forcella Valsórda (2,095 m asl), proceed uphill to the summit of Cima di Valsórda,
- From Cima di Valsórda (2,287 m asl), continue by following the track that runs along the south-west ridge to the saddle, then take the WWI mule track that descends on the southern side of the mountain until you reach the hut of Malga Fiàmena,
- From Malga Fiàmena (1,750 m asl), take the gravel road to the south that passes by the pastures of Malga Boalón (1,686 m asl),
- From the pastures of Malga Boalón, continue the descent along the path of the Signpost No. 347 towards Prade / Cicóna, passing through the location of Col delle Mede (1,486 m asl),
- From the edge of the village of Cicóna, continue the descent that leads to the paved road SP 239 dir, leading back to Zortèa. ✓