Hike through the Rienza Gorge to Rodengo

The circular hike leads us from Rio Pusteria through the Rienza Gorge to Rodengo and along the “Dörferrunde” path back to the starting point.

It’s an early summer day with changeable weather conditions and an increased storm risk in the mountains. So we decide to stay on the valley bottom and explore the natural and cultural landscape in the surroundings of the Rienza. This wild river forces its way through the homonymous gorge before it reaches - partly tamed - Bressanone. Along our hike we walk up to Rodengo Castle and visit the beautiful hamlets in the municipal area of Rodengo, located in a landscape of gentle hills, forests and mountain meadows.

The hike starts in Rio Pusteria. The signpost “Cikilyrweg” leads us straight into the Rienza Gorge (Rienzschlucht, in German). A wide path proceeds for some kilometres through the valley, before it snakes its way uphill towards Sciaves and the signpost “Stegerbühelrunde”. We turn off on the left, following the Stegerbühelrunde path, and reach the Fiumes Cross (Viummer Kreuz) above the Rienza Gorge. The path no. 1 continues towards Rodengo Castle, first downhill, passing the Rundlhof farm and the Rienza bridge, and then uphill again. Right behind the castle there’s the hamlet of Villa, the main village of Rodengo. Several taverns and rest points invite to a take a break.

After a well-deserved rest, we continue our hike, following the Bee Path (Bienenweg) behind the town hall. It leads us through a small valley towards Spissa. At the junction with the “Dörferrunde” we follow this trail, first on an asphalt road and then on a meadow path. It proceeds to the small rural village of Chivo. We cross the village and walk towards San Benedetto with its homonymous church and downhill to the hamlet of San Paolo. At this point, we follow the signpost towards Rio Pusteria, our starting point.

Please note: briefly described, this hike is quite easy, but extensive (14 km). It’s a perfect spring and autumn hike, because on hot summer days the section from Villa on is heavily sun-exposed.

Author: AT

Important: if you want to do this hiking tour, please take information about the current conditions on site!

Starting point: Rio Pusteria (village centre)
Route: Rio Pusteria - Sciaves - Fiumes Cross - Rodengo Castle - Villa - Chivo - San Benedetto - San Paolo - Rio Pusteria
Signposts: Cikilyrweg, Stegenbühelrunde, Viummer Kreuz, Nr. 1A, 1 (Rodengo), Bienenweg, Dörferrunde, 7B, 8, 7
Distance: 14 km
Walking time: approx. 3.5 - 4 hours
Altitude difference: 550 m
Altitude level: between 660 and 990 m asl
Experienced in: June 2016
Further information: Gitschberg-Jochtal tourist board, phone: +39 0472 886048

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