Above and Below the World

Corcega GR20 Corsica

GR 20 CORSICA: DAY 11

Activity type:

Categoria de Senderismo - Hiking activity

Summary:

  • Starting and ending point: Asco Stagnu | Ortu di u Piobbu Refuge
  • Distance and durartion: 13,5 km | 11h
  • Elevation: +1.750 m/-1.630 m
  • Difficulty: Medium
  • Type of route: Lineal

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Location:

Map and profile of the trip:

A day that we will surely remember as unforgettable. A route full of contrasts where the high mountains will dominate much of the route, where we will not lose effort or steep terrain, having to overcome several stone slabs with the help of ropes and climbing with our hands.

We will also notice the great demand on our knees, this is the stage with the longest descent. In any case, our effort will pay off when we reach Bocca di Innominata, where the views of the Mediterranean Sea with the great mountains behind us indicate that the end of this great GR20 journey will come very soon. With this emotion, our eyes will fill with tears to continue this long day that will culminate in the beautiful valley of Bonifatu with its rich forest until we reach the d’Ortu di u Piobbu Refuge.

CORSICA GR20 Phase 3: DAYS 9th-10th-11th-12th

GR-20. HIKING DAY 11: 'Le Chalet', Asco Stagnu, 1.420m - d'Ortu di u Piobbu hut, 1.520m

11h (9h30' in movement) 13,5 km +1750m/-1630m

As is usual in hostels, when sharing rooms, and this in particular where the rooms don`t have doors, we have not slept very well. People got up before 4:00 in the morning opening lights, manipulating plastic bags, others snoring … well, you know.

We get up at 5:20 a.m. and go to breakfast at 5:30 a.m., which is already served at this time. We chose the buffet type and the truth is that it is very good (cereals, coffee with normal milk and oatmeal, toast with jam, cheese, ham and scrambled eggs and a croissant type pasta).

We prepare our backpacks and at 6:30 a.m. we are walking, today is not yesterday at all! it is sunny and without much wind, it is perfect!

We take the path just after passing the hut where we still see some tents in place, we take here a steep path that constantly climbs between stones and roots, and where we sometimes have to help ourselves with our hands.

Corcega GR20 Corsica

Starting the day leaving Asco

Corcega GR20 Corsica

Starting the day leaving Asco

Corcega GR20 Corsica

Easy but demanding little climbs in the first section of the path, leaving Asco

It takes about 2 hours to climb Bocca di Stagnu pass (1,985m). From here it is worth stopping to contemplate the views of Monte Cinto and the entire mountain range, in addition to the climb we just made, we can see Asco that looks small down in the valley. We can also appreciate the way down from Monte Cintp we made yestarday.

Corcega GR20 Corsica

Views to Monte Cinto mountain range from Bocca di Stagnu

We took some photos and continued our way. Now we enter a spectacular mountainous cirque that with these morning lights and the sea in the background invites us to continue the beautiful way contemplating these textures and pastel tones on the rock.

Corcega GR20 Corsica

Cirque view between Bocca di Stagnu and Bocca Muvrella

Corcega GR20 Corsica

Moving through the cirque towards Bocca Muvrella

We go around the cirque and come to a second hill, the Muvrella pass (2,000m) where you need to help yourself with your hands to overcome some vertical channels, between large stone blocks. From firts pass to second one it took us about 2h.

Corcega GR20 Corsica

Small climbs towards the Muvrella pass

Corcega GR20 Corsica

Bocca Muvrella

From here, a descent begins that will take us another 2 hours of slow walking. Right at the beginning of the descent we find the Muvrella lake, very beautiful in this enclave between forest and stone blocks. We go around it, always on a steep and rocky path. At this point we start to find a lot of people going up in the opposite direction.

Corcega GR20 Corsica

Going down to Muvrella lake

Corcega GR20 Corsica

Panoramic views of Muvrella lake and the sea on the horizon

Little by little the loose stone is disappearing and we now find more smooth rocky strips (which in bad weather or rain could be something dangerous and slippery). It is a very fun section where we find many chains to help the “rappel” type descent. We also find some handrails in the slightly more exposed areas to prevent people from falling into the cliff.

Corcega GR20 Corsica

going down with the help of chaind by sections of stone belts

Little by little we go down, with the Spasimata river on our right until we reach the end of the slope where to continue we have to cross the river by a spectacular hanging footbridge, the Spasimata footbridge, which saves the river course of the same name with 10 meters of fall and 30 meters of steel cable length.

Corcega GR20 Corsica

Spasimata hanging footbridge

With high doses of emotion we crossed the river on the footbridge. And now there is only a small climb through the forest to the Carrozzu hut (1,270m). So far it has been 4 hours, and the heat is already hitting! In the hut we stopped to rest, eat and drink water, on a terrace overlooking the Bonifatu valley, very beautiful.

Corcega GR20 Corsica

Carrozzu hut, frequented by hikers

Corcega GR20 Corsica

Terrace of the Carrozzu hut, with panoramic views

At arround 11:15 a.m., we resume the walk, now on a very steep uphill path, and with loose dirt and stone where sometimes you need the help of your hands to move forward, and in very hot and sunny noon.

Corcega GR20 Corsica

Going up after Carrozzu hut

Corcega GR20 Corsica

Bonifatu valle views after leaving behind Carrozzu hut

Corcega GR20 Corsica

Nice panoramic views from Bocca di Innominata

We go up and we arrive at the sensational Bocca di l’Innominata pass (1,865m) where we have good views of the different mountain ranges with a whole network of ravines descending towards the bottom of the great valleys. Here we get excited by the views so close to the north coast of Corsica, an omen that the end of the GR20 is approaching.

Corcega GR20 Corsica

Path going arround Bocca d’Avartoli pass cirque

Corcega GR20 Corsica

Path going arround Bocca d’Avartoli pass cirque

From here we have the bay of Calvi just in front. What a thrill! We are almost here! The eyes begin to fill with tears without knowing very well why, and the emotions surface, remembering how the time has passed without realizing it, and we feel fortunate for this experience among mountains, the joy of these landscapes, lakes and rivers, and our personal growth that this nature has taught us.

Corcega GR20 Corsica

‘Selfie’ at Landrocellu pass

After this introspective and calm moment, we started a descent with a lot of big stone stretches that makes us return to reality and have to pay our utmost attention to move forward, with pain in our knees, along the way. This section, with some zigzags of continuous descent and without any water (we have run out and we do not have water sources during this day) is long and heavy.

It took us about 2 hours to go down, until, after some ruins, we entered forest terrain and after a gentle descent and through a pleasant mixed forest, we already see the d’Ortu hut, with the tents on the side of the mountain.

Corcega GR20 Corsica

The forest when reaching d’Ortu di u Piobbu Hut

Corcega GR20 Corsica

D’Ortu di u Piobbi hut

It took us about 2 hours to go down, until, after some ruins, we entered forest terrain and after a gentle descent and through a pleasant mixed forest, we already see the d’Ortu hut, with the tents on the side of the mountain.

We arrived at the shelter around 5:30 p.m. We see the ruins of the old shelter burned down and they have replaced it with a prefabricated sheet metal hut. The tents are widely scattered occupying the mountainside with beautiful views of the Bonifatu valley.

Corcega GR20 Corsica

Camping area, d’Ortu di u Piobbi hut

From the hut you can ascend to the top of the dominant Monte Corona, following a well-marked path, but our energy is no longer enough!

So we look for a place to pitch our tent in the upper part, we take a shower (with hot water, as always in the GR20 huts) and prepare some spaghetti with tuna, which we bougth in Asco, using gas and pots from the hut.

Corcega GR20 Corsica

Our tent slot 🙂 

We see that Jose Manuel arrives, who join us during the dinner and we share today’s adventure, accompanied by a beautiful sunset.

Very satisfied with today’s day, with aching knees, but standing like heroes, here we are, on the verge of finishing the GR20.

D’Ortu di u Piobbi hut information:

  • Tent slot + breakfast in the hut price for 2 people: 34 €

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