Monday, 30 September 2013

Day 21 Cassio to Ostello-della-Cisa 17 km

Monday September 30th Day 21 Cassio to Ostello-della-Cisa 17 km

The Cisa Pass  runs along the border between Parma and Tuscany
walk through the town of Berceto: Berceto has a medieval atmosphere, with small stone buildings and the remains of a 12th century castle

Woke up this morning early and had fruit and yoghurt for breakfast! The Ostello Di Cassio is wonderful!
 While having breakfast at 7 am, I check the weather outside, it's  very misty, foggy and I'm not sure if there is a light rain, or its just wet air from the fog....
  think I'll spend a bit longer over breakfast!  even have a poached egg on toast too! such a luxurious breakfast after weeks of just bread and jam, or a croissant 
Still very foggy! Claire and John. set off on their cycles just after 8 am. 
at 9 am, I've finished breakfast, packed and walked over the road to the bar for a Caffé doppio con latte ... contemplating donning the pack and venturing out into the foggy wilds of the Cisa pass! 
Off we go into the misty fog.
I'm going to romantically name our walk this morning "a walk in the clouds" We saw lots of white... visibility was between 5 and 15 m all morning. We didn't see any flying deer!

We kept to the road rather than follow the VF walking track. 
I don't want to end up lost, getting eaten by wolves, or falling off a cliff and having a poor unfortunate pilgrim find my skeleton in a couple of years!
 Luckily the road is fairly quiet, not too much traffic. amazing how some drivers still drive at full speed with such limited visibility!
Walked down into the atmospheric village of Bercato, where I experienced another squat toilet facility at the bar near the amazing church!
Berceto is an old, old village, I wandered around a little while Patrick stayed snug and warm in the bar, the low cloud and fog made it seem eerie and mystical. (see the round church window of thin marble, to the right of Patrick - it gives an amazing glow inside the church!)
A local filling drinking water bottles from the fountain
Berceto Church entrance
I saw this little door in the church and opened it... I was so tempted to go up the stairs!

The mist and fog closed in again
Think this door was the butchers - 
Lots of intriguing alleyways...

Off we went from Berceto at about 2:30 the clouds aren't going to cooperate and lift...
 "A walk in the clouds, part two!" We stuck to the road again, no hope of seeing any paths, tracks or markers today!

Walking over the Cisa Pass reminds me a little of our experience walking from Foncebaden over the mountain on the Camino de Santiago...  everything seems eerie, mystical and nebulous in the cloud and fog.

We arrived at the Ostello Via Francigena sooner than I was expecting at -  4:20 pm  yippee!! 
Fausten was there to meet us, we double checked we had the same Ostello that we phoned from Berceto... yes, they're expecting us, we spoke to his mogli (wife) Caterina. 
Bliss, a shower and food by the fire! (red wine, cheese, cold meats, breads, local intense flavoured honey) a snack before a delicious dinner of pasta with fungi, and secondi of grilled herbed chicken fillets!

Our accommodation 
Hostel of the house Grossa - Cisa Pass - Ostello Via Francigena 
Address: SS Cisa, House Roadhouse, 58 km 
Phone: 0525629072 - 328 8741814 
Type: Youth Hostel 
Price: € 15 room only, providing sleeping bag + 3,50 EUR, linen + 5 € 
Number of places: 24 
Services: Lunch or dinner 10  

saying goodbye to the Ostello Cisa - Fausto, Caterina Squeri and their  figli (children)  Pietro & Paolo  

Youth House

Address: Via Martino Lasoni - Berceto
Phone: 0525 60087
Type: Hostel municipal
Open: All year round
Price: OFFER
Number of seats: 7
Kitchen use: YES

Ostello della Cisa
Loc. Tugo
43042 Berceto (PR)
Tel. 0525/629072
Cell. 328/8741814 national parks and accommodation 


  1. Where are you off to next - Pontremoli?

  2. If so - looks like mountains not hills you be walking through / over.