Como lake hides places of great beauty, still unknown and unvisited. Do you know that going up from Gravedona towards Livo there is an uncontaminated valley full of waterfalls, streams, wonderful woods and a fairy-tale lake? Yes, I am talking about Darengo valley with the homonymous lake, reachable with a trek of four hours. It ‘s true, four hours of walking are quite a lot to reach a lake, but rest assured that it is worth it. The valley is very beautiful, the view of Darengo Lake and the surrounding mountains recalls the Dolomites landscapes.

First part: from Dangri to Baggio

To reach Darengo Lake, as I said, you need to get to Gravedona and follow the signs for Livo. Once in Livo take the signs for Dangri, I advise you that the road has some dirt traks and other stretches in cement, better to drive carefully because it is not asphalted. It is possible to leave the car near Crotto Dangri where there are small spaces on the sides of the road. The trail footpath is located at this point, you have to cross the bridge that is clearly visible even in the distance and here you begin to climb immediately.
Partenza località Dangri

Pascoli di Baggio

Darengo valley, a water planet

Continuing from Baggio, the path enters the valley and takes on a rather flat course. Keep in mind that the difference in height of the entire excursion is all concentrated in the initial and final part of the track. After walking about half an hour you will reach the Baite di Borgo in front of which flows a beautiful waterfall. This stretch is full of watercourses and from this point onwards you start to skirt the Darengo stream. It will surely strike you for the numerous pools of clear water shaped throughout its flow. I was there in August, during a very hot day and I made the mistake of not wearing a bathing suit … Well, I suggest you bring it, if you have enough time available, stop along the stream for a regenerating swim, this will allow you to restart with more energies to face the final climb.

Torrente Darengo

Torrente Darengo

Last effort … Then the final show

The path continues along the stream and through the Darengo valley, an almost bucolic landscape dotted here and there with white rocks and larch woods. Even the surrounding mountains are in perfect harmony with the landscape, with their rocky peaks helping to emphasize the charm of the place. Now the final difference in height is approaching: here the path is really steep and the last stretch is completely in the sun. If you decide to make the excursion in summer, wear a hat because the heat will really make itself feel. After a climb of about 50 minutes (help!) you will be rewarded with the final show … Here is Darengo Lake in all its splendor, nestled between the rocky peaks of Pizzo della Gratella, Pizzo Campanile, Sasso Bodengo and Pizzo San Pio. It is so beautiful that seems painted … Its waters will entice you to dive… if you prefer, after so much effort, you can enjoy a relaxing foot bath!

Lago Darengo

 Beyond Darengo lake

The spectacle of Darengo Lake as I said is wonderful but it is also possible to go further if the time and the weather are in your favor. To the left of the lake, next to the Como lodge, the path climbs to reach the rugged peaks that surround it. We tried but … because of the clouds and the late hour we were forced to come back shortly afterwards (5 hours of descent would have been too much). But I have to go back absolutely to this magic place because the view over there must be spectacular. Stay tuned, the enchanting Darengo lake could have a sequel …

Lago Darengo dall'alto