Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Bernina Alpine Mountain Range

Bernina Range

The Bernina Range is a mountain range in the Alps of eastern Switzerland and northern Italy. It is considered to be part of the Rhaetian Alps within the Central Eastern Alps. It is one of the highest ranges of the Alps, covered with many glaciers. Piz Bernina (4,049 m), its highest peak, is the most easterly four thousand-metre peak in the Alps. The peak in the range which sees the most ascents is Piz Palü.

The Bernina Range is separated from the Albula Range in the north-west by the Maloja Pass and the Upper Engadin valley; from the Livigno Range in the east by the Bernina Pass; from the Bergamo Alps in the south by the Adda valley (Valtellina); and from the Bregaglia Range in the south-west by the Muretto Pass. The Bernina Range is drained by the rivers Adda, Inn and Maira (Mera in Italy).

The term Bernina Alps can also be used in an extended sense to include both the Bernina and Bregaglia ranges; this is the area coloured red on the map (right) and labelled ‘Bernina Alpen’.

The Bernina Range extends right to the edge of the Val Chiavenna, Valtellina, and the Bergamo Alps, and is part of the greater Rhaetian Alps.

Included here are numerous valleys, including the Valtellina, Valchiavenna, Valle dell'Adige, the Val Camonica and the Val Isarco. -- Italian Wiki/Rhaetian Alps

When observing these mountain ranges, one can come to an understanding as to how the larger valleys--such as the Valtellina and the Val Camonica--became defacto "little nations" with their own dialects, culture, spirituality, cuisine, folklore, and collective personality... regardless of what monarchy, banking dynasty, church, supernational entity or dictator actually held onto the property deed. In the Middle Ages, these valleys would have been highly isolated.

There is a such thing as "ancestral memory" written into our DNA. Even when I'm in the Santa Cruz Mountains here in San Mateo County, looking across from one side of a valley out to the next, my spirit fires up.. I'm feel that I've returned home. The wonderful green, brown, grey, blue and white of the trees, earth, rock, sky and clouds... the warmth, the scent... timeless.

All the birds have flown up and gone;
A lonely cloud floats leisurely by.
We never tire of looking at each other -
Only the mountain and I.

-- Li Po


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