The Strada degli Scarubbi is a terrible scary mountain road buit during the First World War. The road has a length of 10.5km, and links the Passo Xomo (1.058m) and the Porte del Pasubio, at an elevation of 1.928m (6,325ft) above the sea level. The road is located in the Vicentine Alps, amountain range of the Eastern Alps in Trentino and the provinces of Verona and Vicenza, Italy. The route demands 100% concentration.
The mule track of Scarubbi was built in 1917, during the First World War by the Italian Army to have an access to the summit area of the Pasubio and then to the forefront. Traveled by trucks, however, was exposed to artillery Austrian near Monte Maio, being made on the northern slope of Mount Forni Alti. It was therefore covered in conditions of particular danger, particularly during the night and the lights off. Special techniques were developed to escape the Austrian artillery, such as stop in the bends out of sight, to make it harder for enemy artillery pointing.
Because of its northern exposure, it was not usable during the winter and for most of the spring: these factors necessitated the construction of the road of the 52 galleries, more secure, but not accessible to motor vehicles. After the Second World War the Scarubbi track was the main access route to the first cars of excursionists. Closed to motorized traffic from the eighties, is now accessible only to the managers of the refuge Achille Papa, closed with a barrier shortly after Bocchetta Campiglia. The road starts in Xomo Pass (1058 m) and goes for about 1.5 km to the average of 10% on natural background tarred up to Bocchetta Campiglia (1216 m). Here the road branches off of the 52 galleries and there is a big parking. What makes it famous are the stunning views and the legend says that you can’t just go there only once. The true surprise that people most often don’t expect when coming to this place is the huge difference of temperature from the bottom to the top, and even from halfway to top.
From here the road descends for a few hundred meters until Malga Campiglia and then climbs to Caneve of Campiglia, where you climb with 12 switchbacks for 5.7 km to 9.5% gradient, with very picturesque views from the summit. For about a mile the road is flat, carved into the rock above the spiers of Scarubbi from which it takes its name. This is the more exposed and more dangerous, often subject to small landslides during the spring because of the rains.
For the last mile the road starts to climb winding up at the Gates of Pasubio. However continues another mile and a half, even on slopes much more demanding and bottom rather spoiled, passing the Arc Roman Empire, to the church of Santa Maria del Pasubio at the Harness of Command, the headquarters of the Italian officers during the conflict. Besides the history, also nature and alpine landscapes are good companions
The road of Scarubbi today is in fact the only way used for access to the top of the Pasubio with motorized means. In the intermediate part, the flat, however, prone to landslides after the spring rains and requires annual maintenance consisting, for the removal of debris and the safety. It is also chosen as the descent route from most parts of the hikers, being much shorter than the Road of Heroes, using the shortcuts on switchbacks of Caneve of Campiglia. Together with the other rolling stock is one of the paths of most historical and scenic interest for mountain biking. Having fallen into disrepair, the Italian government has closed off much of it in an attempt to prevent further injuries and deaths from those driving off the edge because of the cracked surface and loose rocks.
Pic: Filippo Crosara