To grab a wonderful 360° panorama of almost the entire of Abruzzo, that is considered by many its finest do consider joining a hike up Monte Rotondo.
Set on the Morrone Massif which is part of Majella National Park you get to traverse along the aptly named Schiena d’Asino, the donkey ‘s spine as you make your way to the summit of Monte Rotondo, a comfortable 1731 metres above sea level.
What you May Spot Along the Way
Boar, wolves, red deer and raptors.
Level of Difficulty
The walk is medium grade – 13km overall with 1,000m of ascent and then descent. The lower part is on a gentle forest road. After the road the footpaths are good – not narrow and exposed nor very steep. It’s steady all the way. The final kilometre along the ridge, brings a slight sense of exposure with massive views and underfoot it is a little rocky. The summit of Monte Rotondo is prominent but doesn’t feel exposed or challenging.
Return from the summit is by the way of Schiena d’Asino.
Our merry group of hikers aged from 8 to 70 years old were accompanied by Stuart Haines. He is the author of the English language ‘Walking in Abruzzo‘ guidebook and the Sulmona Valley Walk website which allows you to download particular walks in the Peligna Valle.
|Vital Statistics & Information|
From Stuart Haines Book, Walking in Abruzzo
|Start and End Point||Car park at Centro Visita del Lupo near Popoli|
|GPS Coordinates of Start Point||42.167928, 13.864243|
|Lowpoint||Car park – 647m|
|Highpoint||Summit of Monte Rotondo – 1,731m|
|1,084m – no ups and downs along the way. Steady ascent|
|Total Distance||13 km|
|Estimated Walking Time||5hrs 30mins – this doesn’t include resting time and assumes a medium pace. No hares and no tortoises…|
|Paths and Exposure||The lower part of the route is on a gentle forest road. After the road the foot paths are good – not narrow and exposed nor very steep. The final kilometre along the ridge, brings a slight sense of exposure and massive views and underfoot it is a little|