The Eagle Peak is part of the Cozie Alps, 2.119 mt high, in between Sangone and Chisone vallies. From the top it is possible to see the little towns of Giaveno and Pinasca, both part of the Turin province.
start altitude(m): 1.258
top altitude(m): 2.119
total heightdrop (m): 861
Access: From Turin highway, take Avigliana Est exit and then follow for Giaveno. Enter Giaveno town and follow directions for SP190 toward Coazze, just to the crossroads for Pontedipietra-Maddalena-Aquila. Follow the directions to Aquila just to the wide park in Alpe Colombino town, 1.240 mt. hight, and leave your car. From here you can still see the old skilifts and buildings of the Pian delle Lese ski resort, they are today totally abandoned.
The beginning is really hard, our legs are cold and the path is really steep already from the beginning. The trail is part of the old ski slopes and this had ruined the ground, making it steep and rocky. After the first set of hairpin bends, we have to stop: our legs are already hurting and the view in front of us is stunning. We can have a look on Giaveno town from a different and amazing point of view; the whole valley opens in front of us and so, everyone is camera ready and taking pics of Giaveno and Turin in the distance. It seems we are all like those groups of Chinese people visiting places around the world, always grabbing their cameras and shooting over and over again! After having the first -of many- little snacks, we have to leave again. We continue to follow the path -or you can also follow the ridge, as you like- and finally, after another really steep section of the trail, we arrive, tired, at the old skilift station arrival. At this point we have already reached 1.857 mt high, but the top is still far from us, we can already see it, and this scares us even more! Our legs hurt, a lot, the snowfields we have walked on have been an even harder effort and the only reason that keeps us going is our lunch, programmed just at the end of this journey! We leave again, but not before a little prize for the road done ‘till here: ice-cold beer for everyone guys! Beer drunk, we leave again. The steep climb is always the same, maybe even more. Our legs are getting worse at every step, but the effort is rewarded with the view, the amazing landscapes that open in front of us at every turn. And we slowly erase all our pain, the fatigue disappears and step after step, we enjoy all of the climb. In the end, passed the last pylon of the old cableway, we are able to glimpse the hut, which until now was covered by the last turn. The fatigue suddenly disappears and we actually climb, hands and feet, since the gradient becomes more and more steep and the pathway almost disappears. We finally reach the hut, exhausted, and we findthere three old elderly men, in the act of drinkink the lasts gulps from a good bottle of red wine. They look at us amused: actually, we are now the old people shattered into pieces from the ascent! Greeting them, we take our well deserved rest, leave our backpacks and have our lunch on the grass, totally destroyed.
Refreshed, backpacks left at the hut, finally we set off for the proper destination, the Eagle’s Peak and its cross-another ten minute walk, not more and quite flat. Just one more thing before getting there, a little gift for our Accademia Torino friends, some words in the hut’s diary, and we are ready to conquer the Peak. The landscape at this point, finally flatter, is just mesmerizing. An all-around view on the Alps, there are no words to describe it, it just hasto be seen and enjoyed. We are also really lucky, because the perfect crystal clear day lets us see the Monviso, towering among all of his siblings.
Remarkable isn’t it? Maybe it is one of the most beautiful landscapes possible to admire from such a near place to Turin, “our” Mountains. We just lose ourselves to admire the valley, the little town and, in the distance, Turin, completely different but so always the same, from a perpective that not everybody is given to have.
We have to come back to the hut, the sun is beginning to set and our group has to split: the two of us are staying up here -“cold isn’t touching us!” last famous words. While watching the others coming back to the city, we take our last pics, and yes, the place up here is really worth the effort of climbing, see for yourselves.
Do you want to know which is the best moment of having a two day hike? The evening! The mobiles don’t work -hopefully- and noone can annoy you, all of the people coming up for the day are already at home. You, you are still there, keeping on watching the landscape, fully relaxed both mentally and physically, every thought must be switched off and the only remaining thing is admiration of what Nature has to offer: the colours of the twilight, the lights of the city that switch on slowly, the last remining sound weakening and the quiet and peace that only the Mountains can bring.
“Walker in search of the peace at twilight
you will find it at the end of the path”.
Franco Battiato (Italian song writer)
But it is not ended here, the show, luckily, goes on. A little bonfire to heat us, a good hot soup, some chill out music and we just sit on the rocks, unable to stop admiring what we have in front of us. The cold doesn’t touch you anymore, because the mountains cuddle you up. It doesn’t matter if it is for the fatigue or the landscape, you are wordless anyway. People continue asking why we hike, how come we like so much to sweat: there is no answer, we just show them this picture and let them begin to understand what nature really is.