top of page


Rifugio Cristina, balcony overlooking the Valmalenco larch forest

Short walk to Rifugio Cristina on Alpe Prabello, at the foot of Pizzo Scalino.
2:00 am


The Rifugio Cristina overlooks Alpe Prabello, an oasis of peace (aptly named "beautiful meadow") at the foot of Pizzo Scalino in the upper Valmalenco. You can reach it from the last hairpin bend of the road to the Campo Moro dams or from the Rifugio Zoia.

If we choose to start from Rifugio Zoia (2021m), we can park in the large paid parking lot just below the refuge. From there, a long balcony trail on a gentle slope leads us first to Alpe Campagneda, then slightly uphill to Alpe Prabello (2226m, 1.00 hour).

The refuge, built in 1924 by Ersilio Bricalli and dedicated to his wife Cristina, is still family-run (now in its fourth generation), managed by great-granddaughters Vania and Valentina.

Keeping Rifugio Cristina behind us, it's worth walking towards the small chapel, and then further for about 5 minutes: we reach the end of the rocky "balcony," and from there, the view opens up over the entire Valmalenco, and a fantastic larch forest. In front of us, the Disgrazia and Cassandra peaks, and the Bernina range on the right.

We return to the car via the same trail we took on the way up (0.45 hours).






The mountains are a dangerous environment: make sure you always have the right equipment — hiking or trail shoes, warm clothes and waterproofs in case of unexpected changes in weather conditions, a small emergency kit.


I've made an Amazon "shopping note" to make sure you have everything — ps if you buy from these links, 3% goes to support the development and maintenance of Hikes of the World 🙏.


  • Breathable t-shirt ( example )

  • Sweatshirt, fleece, or light jacket

  • Waterproof windbreaker (for example: men / women )

  • Gloves and hat (you never know)

  • Backpack with rain cover

  • Trekking poles (not essential, but they help to unload the weight of the backpack and ease the impact on the joints)

  • Trekking or trail running shoes (in great vogue lately because they are lightweight. These Salomon ones - for men and women - are an excellent entry-level, preferably Gore-Tex)

  • For via ferratas: complete via ferrata kit (I have this one , very light and compact, with this harness and helmet — or you can buy complete kits ). Buy in store to receive ad hoc support

  • To sleep a night in a refuge: sheet or light sleeping bag

  • Water bottle or thermos

  • Light crampons if you think you will find ice or snow on the route

  • Power bank or cell phone charger

  • Camera

  • Drone, for those who love to "fly" (used in moderation and at a distance from other people. I have had the DJI Mini 2 for over 2 years and have found myself very happy with it. The DJI Mini 3 also allows you to take vertical photographs)

  • Small emergency kit ( example )

  • Sun cream (essential)

  • Sunglasses


bottom of page