Gone Hiking: A Light Hike

In between meals and visits to Tuscan cities, our vacation included a good bit of outdoors time. In retrospect, that was WONDERFUL, as one of my students told me today that we had less that twenty hours of sun in all of January. How rough is that? 

The original plan was to do a New Year’s Day hike, but unfortunately the weather was a bit gray and wet. Instead we postponed a few days and waited for the sun to come back out. The chosen destination was the Croce di Pratomagno, or the highest point of the Pratomagno mountain range, near Arezzo in Tuscany. 

It’s an easy hike, along a gorgeous rolling ridge with views of the Tuscan hills giving way to the countryside below. We took a slightly easier route, driving most of the way up the mountain on a very windy road that only made me slightly carsick. I would also recommend having a lot of faith in your car to make it up that road in winter, as the last bit is unpaved, and there was a lot of water as well as snow/ice as we got up to the top. The climb from the parking area to the summit was the steepest part, and a bit rough straight out of the car. Needless to say, our legs were stretched pretty quickly. We didn’t have an exact plan for the hike, and just wandered along the ridge for about an hour and a half. Then we turned back, went back to the summit, and then wound our way along the side of the hill back to the car.

To the summit:

Northern mountains in the distance: Photo courtesy BV

Photo courtesy BV

Crazy snow at the top: Photo Courtesy BV
Croce di Pratomagno: 1590 meters
Summit Cross

 A long walk on a long path:

Great light: Courtesy BV

And on the way back to the car….

Clouds rolling in: Courtesy BV

Friends far ahead…
And one BV behind.
Pictures of pictures: Courtesy BV
He took this one too. I’m in there somewhere.

I just think this is dramatic: Courtesy BV
Back down at the car park.

As you can see from the pictures, it’s not a tremendously high or steep climb. I think you can walk for a pretty long way along the ridge, and the trails that join it as well. I got pretty whipped on the way back, but I think that was something to do with all the heavy food we’d been eating the last few days. Plus being that it was January, I hadn’t exactly been doing a lot of outdoorsy/physical stuff in the previous weeks. That was recipe for one tired Heather.

After the hike, we did a half-hearted search for an open restaurant, as one of our group members was ravenous and craving pasta carbonara. Unfortunately for all of us, it was mid-afternoon and if you’ve been to Italy you know that mid-afternoon is NOT the time to try and find real food. You’re better off grabbing some bread and hoping that holds you over until everything reopens for dinner. So be warned! 

Since it’s not a super-hardcore hike, I wasn’t able to find a whole lot of information as far as directionals, but if you want some info on the Pratomagno, you can check this out.

 
If you’re in the area, and are interested in a nice day outdoors, I’d check it out. 
Any other suggestions for good hikes? Italy or elsewhere?

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One thought on “Gone Hiking: A Light Hike

  1. Pingback: Sunday Snapshots | Heather Goes to Deutschland

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