Côte de Gargantua nature reserve
  • Côte de Gargantua nature reserve

Côte de Gargantua nature reserve

Resorts: Gressan

The “Côte” is a moraine that stretches in the plain dividing the villages of Gressan; it is a protected nature reserve born from deposits of glacial origin characterized by a steppe environment, mainly arid, kingdom of numerous animals and plants. This is a magical place, full of legends and folk tales. It is believed that the moraine is tied to a Giant, it would be the pinkie finger of the giant Gargantua buried by a blanket of debris. Other voices instead want it created by the Fairies as explained by the panel at the base of the moraine.

Technical Information

Route

Coming from Aosta, the Côte of Gargantua is visible from the road. Follow the direction to Gressan. The routes that lead to the discovery of the reserve start from different points, this itinerary starts from the hamlet Clapey. From the town hall roundabout take the road that goes up to the left, continue about two kilometres and leave the car in the small parking lot (7 places) to the right in the hamlet of Clapey.
Then take the pedestrian street that goes down to the left at the wood sign Clapey, cross the small village, take the path of the reserve that goes up steep on the right. At the beginning of the trail the panels tell the story of the reserve and the legend of the fairies. The climb on the moraine side is quite steep, but very short and reaches the summit. On the right the path comes to a lectern with a sheet of marble on which is impressed a music. The work is part of the project “Silence is the voice of the Fairies” located in these places by the artist Giuliana Cunéaz. Going left and walking on the crest, from which you can enjoy a vast panorama over Aosta and the castles of Sarre and Saint-Pierre, you reach the cross. From here begins the steep descent towards the hamlet of Fontaine. To return to the starting point there are two possibilities: one path in the middle of the moraine and the other at the base. If you take the first path on the right, not indicated by any sign, the track goes up diagonally towards the lectern, if you continue to go down you will find a yellow sign of the Cammino Balteo. Turn right, a flat path crosses a beautiful forest of oak, ash, pine and follows the base of the moraine until you come out on an asphalt road. Follow it to the end and then take the path that climbs steeply on the right and return to the starting point.

Duration going there

0h45

Length

1068 m

Recommended times

from 01/03 to 31/10

Difficulties

E - Excursionist

Difference in level

170 m

See also

Parks and reserves

Côte de Gargantua nature reserve

Gressan

The elongated spur – the “côte” – originating from deposits of a glacial origin, is one of the most significant elements of this nature reserve, which owes its name to a legend according to which the côte is the little finger of the giant Gargantua, a …

Note - this information is not directly connected to the Cammino Balteo path but it is part of the Aosta Valley tourist offer.