North of Italy (Piemont) and South of Switzerland (Tessin) was where we decided to go for good paddling this spring. We have been there many times, but this destination is just too perfect. Rivers are everywhere and are super close to one another with deep canyons, massive rocks and incredible scenery. We weren’t sure about the water levels at the beginning of our trip, because it has been low all around Europe recently. But hot weather and rain came together and all the rivers in the region were on high edge.
Our first river was Verzasca, the absolute classic with its crystal clear water, smooth rocks, cool rapids and solid water level. We’d spent two more perfect days around there and after that, rain pushed us away. We had a chance to paddle rivers, which I haven’t done before, such as Strona, Gronda and we found those to be super cool too. We had sweet water levels there and we enjoyed some sunshine from time to time. I had a really good time on Strona; in fact, I didn’t expect such a good river. Deep canyons with solid rapids were every few hundred meters.
We also sessioned some laps on Eguna after enjoying good paddling here year after year. It’s always fun to slide and jump down this river. I had a bit of an issue on the last drop but I finally managed to make it out.
After heading back to Tessin the water levels had dropped down and we had a chance to paddle there again. Isorno is one of my favorites with its scenery, nice gorge and the walk from the take out. The flow was a little low so it wasn’t much of a challenge but we still scored some awesome white water.
We had a great time traveling to Tessin and Piemont and can’t wait until our next visit. We could have easily spent another week or two kayaking every single day. Next time!
- by Honza Lasko