The Rifugio Riva (www.rifugioriva.it) is located in the Parco delle Grigne at Alpe Piattedo above the municipality of Primaluna.
The structure is still the same as in the past, when the holiday-makers of Nava used to go up to the chalet of the Sasso Rotondo plain, above Primaluna, to buy freshly milked milk and fresh cheeses. It was the forties of the twentieth century.
And to the old building, owned by the Manzoni family since the early twentieth century – initially it was a stable with pasture – the years began to weigh: the roof to be rebuilt, some too much failure. It was then that SAOAS, Società Alpina Operaia Antonio Stoppani, decided to restructure it: the stable was transformed into a dining room, the milk room into the kitchen and cellar, the barn into the bedrooms and the bathroom. Outside everything remained as before, or almost. With that rustic architecture that still distinguishes the refuge.
By the way, who does the name refer to? He is a prestigious alpinist, Giovanni Riva, nicknamed “Sora” for his resemblance to the Alpine who had participated in the Noble expedition to the North Pole, and was the victim of a fall while climbing the Ago Teresita in Grignetta on July 14, 1935. Born in Lecco on 28 February 1906, Giovanni Riva soon distinguished himself for his ability on the wall. It is no coincidence that he was a friend of Riccardo Cassin, with whom he completed the first ascent of the northern edge of the Sigaro in Grignetta, and of other climbers of the calibre of Comi and Dell’Oro who would soon found the famous Ragni di Lecco.
Next to the Refuge in 1954, Don Angelo Maroni, a native of Primaluna, had a chapel dedicated to the Virgin of the Rocks built in memory of all those who fell on the mountain. One last curiosity: the refuge is shaded by a monumental beech tree, over 150 years old. The ideal setting for this shelter that has maintained an atmosphere of yesteryear.