MIL wanted to hike a little in altitude. Which we could oblige since Modena is surrounded by mountains. Though we wanted to find somewhere near our place and ended up driving (unwittingly) all the way up to Cimone - where you could ski during winter.
I'm the travel agent in the family but decided to let the Hub organise the hiking trip thinking that it couldn't be difficult, he just needed to ask his colleagues etc. Some smart guy recommended that we visit the Lago della Ninfa and lunch wonderfully at some lakeside restaurant there, and so we set out last Saturday to do just that.
Lago della Ninfa
To start, if we had known that the Lago della Ninfa was the lake that you find up there in Cimone (it was frozen the last time we visited), we would not have taken the Nuova Extense. This route up and down the mountains is a killer. Baby Boy vomitted along the way, I nearly did and if Baby Girl hadn't been sleeping she would have done so too. It'd be better to pass by Vignola and go through Fanano to reach Sestola and then Cimone.
And you can't do much in this dirty lake except fish. And there are only 3 restaurants up there, all of which serve really basic Italian food, so if there's a correlation between taste for food and capacity for work, that guy wouldn't be getting any promotion soon.
However we did have a nice hike and the exercise did much to improve our blood circulation and general sense of goodwill. There are several ways to walk up there, we took the one leading from the Rifugio della Ninfa (where we had lunch) and came down the path parallel to the luge track.
View from up there
There are actually quite a number of things that a family can do up there at Cimone in the warmer months. For example, one could fish in the lake. Do some Nordic walking in the forest. Jump on the outdoor trampoline. Sled (luge - looked like steep and fast fun). Snow toob. Mountain bike (not for the weak or faint-hearted). Climb trees.
The track for the luge
Yes, that last activity looked pretty good as we walked under the tree climbing installations and they even have a course open to young children (1m-1m40). It costs 15 euros for 3 hours and parents will need to stay below and supervise their own children as they climb. The older kids and adults have of course tougher and higher courses and that will cost each person 22 euros for 3 hours. The Tree Climbing activity is open from 10-7 on weekends from Spring to the end of Summer.
Lago della Ninfa