CAVA LA BEOLA DI MONTE, MONTECRESTESE
The quarry is located in a particularly sunny area protected from the northerly winds: the favourable climate permits uninterrupted extraction. The Beola di Monti has a recent history, only being opened in 2009 to quarry stone from a deposit that in the past had been active for over 100 years. The extracted material is the highly prized Beola Argentata or Silver Gneiss.
Beolas are part of the orthogneiss family, metamorphic rocks of a light grey colour and strongly accentuated foliation, specifically they are granitic orthogneiss. Thanks to their schistosity, they were used in antiquity as roofing material and for fireplaces for cooking. The word beola derives from the placename Beura where the rock has been extracted since the year 1000. This is the Val d’Ossola version of the pioda roof tile in serpentine schist from the Valtellina. Beola argentata is used with great success in the construction and furnishings industries.
How to reach us
E62/SS 33 Sempione exit: Crevoladossola – Montecrestese.
Follow the signs for Montecrestese, having reached Pontetto turn left and head to Croppola where you will find the dedicated car parks.
There is a 200-metre walk from the car park to the quarry and we advise comfortable shoes and clothing.
CAVA SEULA, BAVENO
The Cava Seula quarry is situated at Baveno an area of great mineralogical interest. Granito Rosa di Baveno, the local pink granite, is still extracted from this active quarry which is also home to a feldspar mine supplying raw materials to the ceramics industry.
The Baveno granite enjoys worldwide fame and began to be extracted in the 16th century. Numerous monuments have been constructed in Baveno granite, including that in honour of Christopher Columbus. Palazzo Carignano in Turin and the monument to Victor Emanuel II.
Prior to the 20th century, the material was extracted using gunpowder and the granite was transported by water along Lake Maggiore and the Ticino river. Currently, modern hydraulic excavators and drills have replaced the no less laborious work of the miners. For one evening on the occasion of Tones on the Stones, this still active major industrial space will become not only a concert hall, but a true milonga.
How to reach us
The entrance to the quarry is in Via degli Scalpellini, close to the Baveno exit of the A26 autostrada.
At the take the autostrada underpass and bear right through to the car park.