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The Alp of Puntato

Naturalistic attractions

The alpine pasture is a landmark for hikers

Puntato, one of the last alpine pastures of the Apuan Alps, enclosed between Pania della Croce, Mount Corchia and Freddone, overlooked by the imposing Pizzo delle Saette, is certainly one of the most evocative and fascinating places in the Natural Park. Inhabited by communities of shepherds until the 1940s and abandoned after the end of World War II, it still preserves, in the many crumbling houses, in the terraced land for crops, in the mule tracks wrenched from time, in the well-maintained paths, the memory of an ancient way of life made up of hard work and mutual help. Walking in the nearby woods, it happens to encounter stone dryers, used in the past to produce chestnut flour or, with a little more attention, to see the still-present signs of old charcoal kilns, where, through the slow burning of stacks of wood covered with earth, coal was obtained.

In recent years some of the cottages on the Alp have been renovated and used as homes, remaining mostly destinations for Sunday outings.

Besides being a place sought after by many hikers, the Puntato constitutes one of the best starting points for anyone wishing to visit the beauty of the Apuan Park. Thanks to the presence of two beautiful refuges, the Robbio and the Quiete, operating with photovoltaic systems to produce electricity, there is in fact the possibility of staying overnight in this place suspended in time. Guests can choose between room and board and self-management. Also located here is the Puntato Organic Farm, awarded in 2005 by the Tuscan Region as an example farm for Eco-sustainability. Through the production of honey, chestnut flour, vegetables, medicinal plants, the presence of mules for transporting materials and horses for possible trekking, a hydroelectric plant under construction, Puntato has rightly become a center of international environmental education.