January 2020
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Among rocky towers

This post is more about mountain landscape than plants.A tower made of rock

I strongly suggest the hike trail that crosses the Gran Sasso massif that I came to know thanks to a Roman hiking group. From the ‘Albergo di Campo Imperatore’ you can reach in 6-7 hours the town of Pietracamela on the opposite slope of the grat mountain feeling the real essence of it, its role in dividing in two this part of Italian peninsula through a series of steep slopes and rocky peaks.

The trail starts going up towards the ‘Sella di Monte Aquila’, after skipping the trail to go to the highest peak of Gran Sasso you can easily head north towards Rifugio Garibaldi.

The Gran Sasso peak

Entering Val MaoneAfter walking under ‘Pizzo Intermesoli’, you enter the long Val Maone that starts among the highest peaks of the Apennine, goes through a beatiful beech forest along the stream named ‘Rio Arno’, and finally reaches the town of Pietracamela.

The latter is as rocky as the peaks surrounding it, that unfortunately got his houses and churches damaged by the heartquake that hit this region about one year and a half ago.Wounded church in Pietracamela

Not so many plants were in bloom in September, when I faced this hike, however I got the chance to see the tidy flowers of Gentianella columnae and the hairy and messy fruits of Pulsatilla alpina.

Gentianella columnae flowersThe fruits of Pulsatilla alpina

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