Bergamo, Val Cavallina
Valcavallina is the most important communication connection between the Bergamo and Valcamonica areas. The busy state road going through the valley, after passing Seriate and Trescore, enters among the initial mountain ridge following the course of the Cherio River. After leaving the San Fermo pass on its right, after a brief stretch it reaches the beginning of Lake Endine, the heart and soul of the Valcavallina. After passing the lake, it meets the township of Endine Gaiano where the very small Lake Piangaiano is found. A tour of Val Cavallina, maybe even by bike, can represent a pleasurable holiday under the sign of the tranquillity and variety of the low mountains enriched by the typical lake tourist accommodations and the hospitable climate. The Valcavallina and Serbino territories include numerous protected areas, among which the most important are the Valle del Freddo, and the Regional Natural Reservation of Valpredina.Instituted in 1985, the Valpredina Reservation extends out in the territory of the township of Cenate Sopra, of which Valpredina is a hamlet. The valley is characterised by the typical Bergamo pre-Alps landscape, in which the transition between the plains environment and the alpine area takes place. The balance between natural space and human intervention is found in the extension of the terraced and cultivated plains and the steep wooded slopes. There is a variety of animal species, above all birds, and especially golden orioles and common owls. There are also numerous varieties of the rodent family,hedgehogs, skunks, beech-martens and badgers. Among the reptiles and amphibians we can find newts and spotted salamanders, the symbol of the Reservation. Another area interesting from a naturalistic point of view is the Valle dell'Acqua, a lateral valley of the Valcavallina that is found in the village of Luzzana. It is surrounded by mountains such as Mount Pranza' in the north (1099 m), the Corna Clima peak in the north-west (855 m) and Pizzo Casgnola in the south (790 m). The most characteristic and picturesque aspect of this area is produced by the bed of the Bragazzo torrent that flows through the valley for about 3 km forming a waterfalls, numerous springs, holes, trenches and contrasting calcareous travertine deposits. Most of the valley is wooded, some sections densely populated with tress and impenetrable, full of hornbeams, durmasts, junipers, manna-ashes and mountain maples. Varieties of Italian orchids and lily-like flowers, such as the mountain asphodel and the red lily, can be seen in the glade and in the damper areas among the fern, the characteristic scolopendrium grows. Moving towards the Higher Serbino, along the coast dividing the Gaiano plain from the Bergamo side of Lake Iseo, we find the Valle del Freddo Natural Reservation. This Reservation was instituted in 1985 and it is found in the municipal territory of Solto Collina. It is a particular geo-morphological structure characterised by the typicality of its microclimate. The cold air emissions coming from the "cold holes" create an abnormal climatic condition at 400m above sea level that can be seen by the presence of alpine flora such as the rhododendron, the gentian and the edelweiss. The North Oglio Park is in the Lower Serbino and the area around Mount Bronzone in the township of Sarnico. It includes the section of the river that goes from its lake Iseo outlet to Binanuova, in the Province of Cremona. The route, beginning at the head of the river, is almost entirely in a deep bed among terraced riversides. The vegetation present conserves its original aspect in some places with alder, willow, elm and poplar trees and the typical flora of the swamplands (reed thicket and river bushes).