The first stage in Lunigiana is quite long but very interesting and pleasant. It allows you to cross the bioclimatic and agri-food border between continental Europe and the Mediterranean basin, while remaining in a fairly similar environment due to the altitude. We head away from beech woods to meet extensive oak and chestnut groves, furrowed by lush streams with the remains of centuries-old mills, and the charming villages of Torsana (with the annexed church of San Giacomo of the 12th century) and Camporaghena (with the church of Saints Peter and Paul), real gems of rock and stone in the heart of the Tuscan-Emilian Apennine National Park that's now inhabited by very few. On the horizon, we can begin to see the jagged profile of the Apuan massif, towards which we are headed. First, the route develops along a beautiful mule track with various votive chapels, it then heads slightly uphill to meadows and then descends to Sassalbo, greeted by a magnificent chestnut wood that's the final destination of this leg of the itinerary.