Mineralogical locations
of Piedmont
by Patrizia and Massimo Deidda
Right Ala Valley
The Bessanese moraine-Balme (TO)

The Bessanese moraine is located in the municipality of Balme (TO).

The territory of the municipality of Balme is inserted in a context of great significance, countless mineralogical localities include known worldwide.

The Bessanese is bordered to the North by the Uja of Ciamarella, East is based on the "Crot" of Ciaussinè, West has his side in France and to the South by the Tip Of Arnas demarcates the border with Valle di Viù.

At Pian della Mussa, a footpath at the foot of the Alpe Venoni leads us next to the Channel of goats and later on the ground floor of the dead.

The trail is well marked and reporting comes to a cliff at the base here there are large rock terraces on top of which were places of handrails, overcome this little fix can be reached in a short time to the famous "Crot" of Ciaussinè which hosts the Gastaldi.

In front of us and the majestic Bessanese.


The population of the Valli di Lanzo was in about 1211 1359 fires (families) equivalent to 6055 people, [1] to become about 22440 in 1824 (calendar of Regii, States 1824.)

According to the registry of 1858 its population was about people and 23657 census published by the Ministry of agriculture and trade of 1862 shows a considerable emigration of about 3800 people towards the plains of Piedmont and other countries including France, Spain and Belgium. [2]

The author has no counterpart in the country of Balme (TO) in the mirror of the Castellana di Lanzo built in 1359 to a subsidy granted to the count of Savoy from his subjects to purchase the land of Vaud and of the Valromey, in the mirror are attributed to these fires Wing 95 95 families were certainly also those of Balme.

In 1619 the parish church is separated from the wing.[1]

In 1862 the population of the municipality of Balme was 372 inhabitants divided into five centers, Chialambertetto, Molera, Molette, Balme and croissants.[2]

Many people argued that the name Balme is of Celtic origin, this name indicates a prolonged for more mountain valleys. [2]

In 1800 many inhabitants of Balme during the months of October and November went to Torino to make the log splitter and came into the country in April, others emigrated in France to make the miners.[2]

From the context of the breadth of the municipalities of the Valli di Lanzo shows that in the municipality of Balme in the year 1862 on a total surface of 5884, 40 hectares were destined to fields, meadows, 10 160 were uncultivated fields, pastures, 216 2630 underpants (muande) and prunai, 2828 rocche waters and glaciers. [2]

The name of the Alpine pastures of the municipality of Balme was as follows, Solero, Alpe Pian Salvino, Giassat, Comba, Mussa, Ciamarella, Venoni, Bosch, Laframont, Pianas. [2]

Were grown in the municipality of Balme, rye and potatoes. [2]

In the 14th century the bear lived the valli di Lanzo, hunting for the counts of Savoy (1351).

Wolves, foxes and wild boars were very common in all the valleys.

From 1650 until 1822 the woods of the Lanzo valleys were completely destroyed by the hand of man, only in 1822 a strict forest Act put an end to this destruction.[2]

Among the curiosities happened in the territory of the municipality, in 1866 such Castagneris to Balme said Babatola fell into a glacier crevasse Arnas and believed dead was abandoned for eight days from his companions without peaks to retrieve his body.

On the ninth day four guides to Balme departed to retrieve his body and after many trials and calatisi in the crevasse is amazed and rejoiced in noting the Babatola alive and with his hands on his head.[2]

The Bessanese moraine is easily discoverable mineralogical but is low in representative samples despite the immense pietraia, morainic boulders of ice have been found below the minerals.

Please remember to take all the precautions for safety in the mountains, common sense should always prevail over all things.



Albite particularly shiny crystals in minutes, chalcopyrite in deformed crystals ilmenite in Crystal, malachite in patinas and crystalline aggregates rounded on fibrous chalcopyrite, molybdenite associated with pyrite massive, massive pyrite , prehnite in growth clusters yellowish green, stilbite crystals in minutes a sheaf of pearly color.


Research and the collection of minerals in the Piedmont region is regulated by regional law No. 51 April 4, 1995, collector purposes only, scientific and educational.



My heartfelt thanks to Istituto Geografico Militare in Florence that has made available the cartography of the area treated.



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Minerali Piemonte
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Photos and descriptions edited by
Patrizia and Massimo Deidda