Lake Reschen, The legend of the bell tower in the water


Have you ever heard of Lake Reschen, a curious artificial alpine lake in the western part of South Tyrol, in the municipality of Curon Venosta? If the answer is yes, for sure know its emblem-marking, the lonely and impressive bell tower that seems to appear from nowhere in the middle of the lake. Long about 6 km, with the capacity of 120 million cubic meters, the lake is certainly the largest in South Tyrol.

Until the year 1950 there were three natural lakes at the Reschenpass: lake Reschensee, lake Curon and lake San Valentino alla Muta. The creation of a large dam unified the first two lakes and submerged the small town, from which all the inhabitants had to evacuate. Only the presence of the great and lonely bell tower that rises from the water reminds us what happened today. According to the legend, in some winter days there can hear ring the bells, which instead were removed from in the July 18, 1950, before the formation of the lake. But you know, the Trentino Alto Adige is not new in terms of legends, magic and mystery. From folk tales emerge mountains overflowing of ghosts, witches, nymphs, gnomes, goblins.

The story begins when the engineer Josef Duile from Curon (inventor of the modern "asphalt" road), at the beginning of the second half of the last century, decided to implement his plan to obtain new agricultural land in favor of the inhabitants of the Valley, lowering the level of "Mittersee" (Lake Graun) by building dikes within which slide the local stream Karlinbach. Later it was suggested to take advantage of the stream now governed to create a reservoir for the production of electricity. The limited scope of this original project did not bother the inhabitants of the valley because they did not represent any danger for bordeggianti land of Curon and Resia countries. The consequence was instead 677 hectares of land were under water and about 150 families were deprived of the opportunity to continue their existence there for the absolute lack of any personal resource.

The lake is inhabited by countless fish such as perch, pike, whitefish and char, so the lake is also perfectly suited for all fishing enthusiasts! And for those who prefer to practice sports along the shore of the lake, nordic walking or inline skating is great! The lake is also a great starting point for hiking in the surrounding nature; in winter, when the lake freezes, the bell tower is also within walking distance. Even the possibility of practicing sport in the water is not lacking: a true paradise for kite, thanks to the constant and strong wind. In seasons with the coldest temperatures it may also be practiced the sleigh sailing. Not far from the location, to the shore on the west, it is in fact located at the valley station of the ski area "Schöneben". In 2009 they were carried out restoration work in the Romanesque tower, which have made more stable the structure. By the time union between the lake and submerged bell tower has become one of the most charming and attractive points of the Trentino region, which attracts a large number of photographers and tourists from all over Europe.