Those who follow the road which connects Valle Camonica to Valtellina through Passo dell’Aprica pass through Corteno Golgi, a municipality named after its illustrious citizen who was awarded with the Nobel Prize for Medicine in 1906. The southern portion of the municipality of Corteno Golgi hosts two intact valleys crossed by wild torrents with foaming waters: Valle Brandet and Valle di Campovecchio, on the bottom of which you find Valli di Sant’Antonio Nature Reserve. The slopes overlooking the two streams, up to the ridges which crown these mountains, house many interesting natural elements (alpine lakes, rare animal, and plant species) and signs of past human activities, which were carefully limited to building stone and wooden cabins and barns. This area can be accessed from the village of Sant’Antonio through a road which passes by the Reserve Visitor Centre, open during the summer. From the opening at the entrance of the village you can proceed towards the two valleys only on foot or by mountain bike. The departure for bikers is quite rough because the initial stretch of road that leads to the fork between the two valleys is very steep.
At the fork marked by a fountain, which you will find after about one kilometre, continue straight entering into Val Brandet; the stream is always on the left and the slope decreases significantly once you reach the first group of cabins. The road gradually ascends and crosses a small tributary, then becomes steeper in the section that precedes the arrival to Malga Casazza cowshed.
From here, you return to the fork for Valle di Campovecchio, where you turn left. The road advances in the forest alternating short gentle ascents with short descents, reaches a group of cabins and a hut
and proceeds along the stream on a slight slope. As you approach the start of the valley, the slope increases and forces you work harder. After a couple of adjacent fords, you ride again for a short distance until you reach Malga Culvegla cowshed, and from there you return to Sant’Antonio.
Point of departure: Sant’Antonio di Corteno Golgi, altitude 1120m
Point of arrival: Malga Casazza in Val Brandet and Malga Culvegla in Valle di Campovecchio
Length: 23 km
Difference in height: 912m
Type of bicycle required: mountain bike