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Alpine Crossing 2013 – Day 36: Casa Alpina Excelsior – Rifugio Campo Base

At 6 am we were on the road. When the alarm clock rang at 5:15am I hated myself :P It was still quite dark outside and quite cold but what we could see the weather looked good. We left the Rifugio at 6am after heaving a quick “breakfast” (actually it was just biscuit with butter and marmalade). We had no coffee since it was too early…what a great day……. (it is hard to imagine what a strong influence a coffee in the morning can have on ones mood…). We climbed up to a pass on about 2850m. From here we continued 20 minutes to the summit Monte Bellino on about 2900m. Here and there we saw some old bunkers…so this mountain probably played an important role in the war. At the top we made a long break. Now I was glad that I got up so early. We were completely alone – the only thing which disturbed the silence was the wind. Up to the horizon in each direction the sky was dark blue – there was no single cloud. I felt I did not want to leave this place again :) Finally, we had to go…we climbed down back to the pass and then descended through a long and broad valley to Rifugio Campo Base on about 1600m.

Since we arrived at the previous hut we had no mobile signal and trying to call Rifugio Campo Base from this hut also didn’t work – no one answered the call…oh yes…and at first we had a wrong phone number. So we were not able to reserve in advance. The hut has about 35 places to sleep – so we were optimistic that there was still a place for us. And again…we were wrong – it was already fully booked. However, we were offered a “container”. The container had 8 beds inside and was very small. Still we decided to take it because we were completely exhausted. In the end we were still lucky since we were the only guests in this container while the other guests had to share a room with 8 other people – and we even paid 4 euro less per person :) The dinner was extended to 2 hours! Not because there was so much to eat…just because it took so long to serve it… Personally I did not see many people which were so unorganized, before :) But beside that the food was quite good. Tomorrow the weather might get worse…so we decided to get up even earlier in the morning. Our plan is to leave at 5:30am with headlights. Again we will miss the breakfast…and the coffee….great…. But getting up early is the only thing we can do to reduce the risk of getting into bad weather…maybe we worry too much.

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