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Type of protected area - Where it is located
Typology: State Biogenetic Nature Reserve; established with D.M. December 20, 1975; falls within the Belluno Dolomites National Park.
The Valle Imperina Biogenetic Nature Reserve, a lateral and dolomitic valley of the Cordevole Torrent with larch, beech and mugheti, has an area of 238 hectares in the Municipality of Rivamonte (BL). It is an ancient mining center that has marked the Agordina economy for centuries.
Imperina Valley at the end of the 19th century - Imperina Valley Nature Reserve (photo www.agordino.bl.it)
The right side of the Imperina Valley, more steep, is sculpted in the compact formation of the Main dolomite, the left side, more gentle, is modeled in the soft rocks of the metamorphic base (phyllodes). Val Imperina is known above all for its mines, which remained active for over five centuries (from the 15th to the 20th century), from which it was extracted from cupriferous pyrite. From the mineral, through a complex metalluric process, copper was obtained at the end. At the end of the 19th century, following the collapse of the world copper price, the production of Val Imperina soon found itself out of the market. In the twentieth century, extracted pyrite was used for the production of sulfuric acid, used by the chemical fertilizer industry. The landscape is strongly characterized by the ancient mining activity. Since 1994, an ambitious overall recovery project has been underway for the mining village.
A building dating back to the eighteenth century, born as a warehouse, has been restored and transformed into a youth hostel. Lex hydroelectric power station, from the early 1900s, houses a visitor center. The project foresees the reopening of the galleries, which would complete the recovery of a unique industrial archeology center in Europe.
In the Reserve there are interesting natural forest formations and original floristic settlements. The fauna present in the area is of particular value.
Youth hostel - Imperina Valley Nature Reserve (photo www.agordino.bl.it)
Information for the visit
Via Gregorio XVI, 8