Lago di Camarda is a tiny waterhole near L’Aquila at an elevation of around 2050 m. Technically not challenging, I recommend the walk for those with a desperate need for exercise.
The path is easy to find. Coming from Assergi, drive in direction north-west on Strada Stratale 17bis. Where the road turns east into the direction of Campo Imperatore continue straight on the nameless road towards north-west. After passing San Pietro on the left, continue for a little bit and park near the sign for cheese at (Lat 42.44230, Lon 13.44328). The path is unmistakable.
At the beginning, I walk through grasslands with sightings of farm animals such as horses, cows, sheep, goats and shepherds dogs. The views are nice but not really better than from the side of the road. The flies are abundant and, like everywhere in this area, more annoying than in other places.
All the way up to the lake, the path climbs continuously. Even though it is never really steep, it is a tiring ascent. Lago di Camarda in itself is not worth seeing. The views of Pizzo di Camarda and the surrounding peaks and lakes however make me forget how tried my legs are.
Altogether, the hike can take anything between 3 and 6 hours. There is no shade and no infrastructure, you need to carry your own water. Other things that may prove useful to bring along are more water, comfortable hiking shoes (class A or B), food and sun screen.
Time of visit: June 2014