Flowers’ and butterflies’ Path
Flowers’ and butterflies’ Path allow to discover and appreciate Pizzo Arera’s flora and fauna. On this mountain is possible to find several rare varieties of plants, including one existing only here: the stenoendemits.
The path is a circular tour from Rifugio Capanna 2000 to Branchino Pass and it’s situated between 5.974 -6.653 feet. The Flowers’ Path is along a way dedicated to Claudio Brissoni, a well-know botanic of the region.
Starting from Rifugio Capanna the Path cross the Val d’Arera and Passo Gabbia (6625 feet), go down until the Mandrone’s valley, then it goes up to reach Bocchetta di Corna Piano (6817 feet), ending at Branchino Pass (5974 feet) near to the namesake lake.
The Path can be joined from tree different points:
The best period for flowering (so also visiting) is in July. At Summer is also possible to reach the top of the Arera from the south side were people can delight the splendid panoramic view of the Valley and Alpi Orbiche.
Flowers growing up spontaneously along the Path present intense colours and big size.
A short list of unique and rare flowers in the area:
Other species, such as Carex firma, grow up only at high altitude, or at middle altitude (in proximity of Val Vedra, Branchino Lake) like Nardus Stricta and Gentiana Purpurea.
All orobic species developed with centuries peculiars vegetative abilities to change their own damaged parts. Their roots are extremely deep and thanks to this the plants keep the ground stable, preventing snowslide.
The starting points of Valcanale and Mezzeno forms the Butterflies’ Path. The plants and the flowers are the natural nourishment for butterflies’ growth, therefore Mount Arera is a natural habitat of many butterflies’ species.
For example at summer it’s possible to see a tiny Schythris arerai, a typical butterfly of Orobic Alps. In the same day it could be possible to admire a bigger butterfly, living only on high altitude: the Erebia pandrose.
Other species that can be found by visitors along Butterflies’ Path are: Apatura iris, Limenitis populi and Lopinga achine or Parnassius apollo, Parnassius mnemosyne e Oeneis glacialis. Very common are Noctua pronuba e Vanessa cardui.
The increase of forests caused by the abandon of traditional farmer’s activities mean for Mount Arera also a danger in the ecosystem of butterflies. The Butterflies’s Path aim is to improve the interest in minor fauna, but also to help people to understand the importance of conservation of these environments.