Close to the Rifugio Racollo is a small pool of water whose size varies across the seasons. It bears no physical resemblance to any of the lochs I have come across in my native Scotland or the stunning High Tatras. Tiny, muddy, shallow, full of cow-dung, barren surroundings, it struck me as bereft of the misty mysteries, drama and intense vegetation I’m accustomed to. Weather so mild that the thermals were hardly justified. But as the sun went down and the warm glow began to fringe the mountain tops, and in spite of the continuing breeze that blurred the reflections, it dawned (!) on me that comparisons are pointless.