The Stony Grounds of Vedana

The Stony Grounds of Vedana
(photo by: Danilo Giordano)

It is a chaotic expanse of boulders and detritus, mainly covered with pioneer vegetation, with its own intrinsic charm, interesting also the most absent-minded observer. “Masiere” (meaning “stony grounds”) are situated on the right bank of torrent Cordevole, at the mouth of Agordo channel.

Municipality/ies: Sospirolo

Access: from Ponte Mas (Sedico), from Gron or from Mis (Sospirolo).

Difficulty reaching and moving about in the area: You can easily reach “Masiere” with motor vehicles. Moreover, among them, you will find a thick network of asphalt and gravelly roads, mule tracks, trails, tracks.

Floristic-vegetation features
First of all, the highest hillocks are covered with a xerothermic vegetation (more recent, i.e. Pseudolysimachion barrelieri, Inula ensifolia) enriched with microthermal elements (i.e. the white dryas), still growing on the slopes of Mt. Perón from where the landslide came off, and surviving the following climate changes.
The elements of the order Ericales-Pinales, tolerating more than others temperature and water ranges and vegetating on very draining gravelly-sandy soils, are well represented. They include very widespread species in the whole area of the Dolomites, like Erica carnea, Sesleria albicans, Chamaecytisus purpureus (that with Thesium rostratum is the south-easternmost element of this very widespread kind of vegetation). Also the most primitive hop-hornbeam formations developing on detritus tables (and rich in heath) and on cliffs (with Snowy Mespilus) have trouble in developing for the maintenance of ecological conditions selecting only the most adequate species to resist these great variations. The scarce evolutionary development of the soils guarantees the maintenance of the pioneer communities, giving the opportunity to appreciate the various aspects of the colonization.

Wildlife features
The stony grounds are not a very hospitable environment for many animal species. Despite this, the area is an ideal place for the badger and the fox, finding here shelters and adequate places to build their dens, often situated under big boulders or in heaps of stones. This is an ideal habitat also for reptiles: here you can find the wall lizard, the whip snake, the Aesculapian snake, and the asp viper. In the past, also the horned viper was sighted here. Among birds, the Rock Bunting is worth a mention.

Further features
Without a doubt, the area of the “Masiere” is one of the most interesting geomorphological areas not only of the pre-Park area, but also of the whole Province of Belluno.

  • Recommended time of year: all year round, but the best period is late spring.
  • Equipment: it is recommended to use mountain boots.

Notes: The presence of quarries has considerably reduced this original environment; however, the remaining stretches still give the opportunity to carry out interesting naturalistic observations.

Municipality: Sospirolo (BL)