Homeland Montespluga Madesimo
A project by ASSO Orobica ASD & Spiagames Outdoor Agency
ASSO Orobica ASD — Via Borgo Palazzo, 272, 24126 Bergamo (BG) Italy — P.IVA 02740310160

French "ID" Info Durable at Homeland

Italy: This lift-free ski resort offers alternative activities

French "ID" Info Durable at Homeland
In Italy, a ski resort without ski lifts opened last winter. It offers alternative sporting activities focused on respect for nature and courses to adapt to life in the mountains.
Go skiing without falling off the ski lift or losing a glove in the chairlift? It’s possible in the Italian Alps. The Homeland ski resort, in the north of the country, has made the ecological bet of operating without any ski lifts. These were removed from the Montespluga site 20 years ago. Since then, a different resort has opened its snow-covered doors in winter 2022.

She has been able to adapt her offers in order to best respect the surrounding valley. Walter Bossi, manager of the site, reports to ID that Homeland aims to be “an alternative to classic resorts which focus on alpine skiing and use fake snow”. The stated objective is respect for the mountains, for wild nature, without trace of human activity. “It’s snow paradise,” according to the manager.

Activities in harmony with the mountains
No more going down the slopes at high speed, it's more about discovering the landscape at your own pace. The main activity is ski touring, which aims to travel through pristine nature. To do this, practitioners put on ski bases under the classic skis to successfully climb, before removing them once at the summit. Then follows the descent into virgin snow. “It’s much more rewarding, the mountain belongs to you,” says the Homeland manager.

From the three-hour “first experience” to the full-day “advanced tour,” Homeland Resort offers several ski touring courses. In the same genre, it is possible to try snowshoeing. This similar exercise allows practitioners to cover untouched sections of the mountain in a tour lasting a few hours. But no slipping planned: the descent is also done by walking.
For those more keen on adventure, the resort offers “night camp”. This activity consists of two days of ski touring with one night in a tent, in total immersion in the surrounding massif. The last on the program is a survival course. This half-day theoretical course prepares you for life in the high mountains. Among other things, it provides advice on preventing and managing avalanches, or finding your way around the valley.

A resort accessible to athletes
Homeland adapts its activities according to levels, ranging from initiation to advanced courses. However, the offers offered remain physical, even at a beginner level. Walter Bossi admits: "ski touring is a difficult sport. To practice it, you need to have a good knowledge of alpine skiing, and already know how to ski on red and black slopes." As for nighttime in the mountains, temperatures can go as low as -20 degrees. So, there is no question of trying the experience without being in shape and prepared. Moreover, the resort offers an introductory course aimed at acquiring the basics and taking your first steps as a skater.

In terms of prices, ski tours range from €100 for a half day to €200 for a full day, per person. As for the half-day of snowshoeing, it costs €35. These prices are in the average price ranges for a resort in the Alps. Accommodation is also available on site, at prices similar to those in the region.

Located a three-hour drive from Milan, Homeland station is accessible by car and, since this year, by bus. “A shuttle has been set up on weekends from Campodolcino, at the bottom of the valley,” rejoices Walter Bossi. This village has a train station directly connected to the cities of Milan and Lecco. A greener transport alternative for an environmentally friendly sporting getaway.
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