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These set of pages are a more thorough account of our visit to the National Park of the Majella and our climb of Monte Amaro. The National Park of the Majella is located in the province of the Abruzzo. Abruzzo is a mountainous place, with many peaks above 8000 feet. It is also known for its old castles and interesting hilltowns.

The National Park of the Majella encompasses an area known as the Maiella Massif. The mountains in this massif are generally rounded, weathered limestone, more suited to hiking than outright climbing. There are acres and acres of barren alpine terrain, perfect for trekking. We set out to climb the highest mountain in the Majella: Monte Amaro, at 9163ft (2793m).

Note: additional pictures on these pages that are not in the main narrative have a thumbnail surrounded by a color.
Regional Locator Map
This is a regional locator map for Monte Amaro and the National Park of the Majella. [enlarge]
The Abruzzo
This is a shot of us as we arrive in the province of the Abruzzo. The Abruzzo is a region in central italy with relatively high mountains, medieval hilltowns, castles, and much beauty. [enlarge]
Lots of herded sheep
Our highway is blocked, and we are surrounded by a couple of shepherds moving their flock. [enlarge]
medeival abruzzo hilltown
This is the hilltown of roccacaramanico, in the national park of the maiella (majella). [enlarge]
Beautiful twisties
Our Volkswagen touring is seen here navigating the deliciously twisty and scenic backroads of the national park of the maiella. [enlarge]
The Maiella
This is the main massif of the Maiella (Majella) mountains. The highest point on this massif is Monte Amaro, at 2793m (9000+ feet) [enlarge]
Hotel at Passo San Leonardo
This is the modern-esque hotel at the pass of san leonard in the national park of the maiella. We stayed here at the last minute when we couldn't locate a campground before dark fell. Rather pricey considering the mid-week, off-season ish day we stayed. [enlarge]
Trailhead, Monte Amaro
This is the CAA-signed trailhead for Monte Amaro (CAA = Club Alpinismo Italiano). If you want to see exactly where this is, refer to the maps or the GPS Data. [enlarge]
Fields, Forest, Alpine
A view of the lower fields, mid-height forest, and high-elevation alpine terrain of the Maiella mountains. Monte Amaro is up at the top along the skyline. [enlarge]
A Tholos
This is a Tholos, old structures used by shepherds. [enlarge]
Butterfly in the Maiella
Rising out of the trees
Our trail starts to rise out of the trees, giving us some views of the region around the Maiella. [enlarge]
Trail leading up
A view of the trail leading up, not far from the fontana (spring) di Orso. [enlarge]
Andrew in an alpine meadow
Andrew climbs up above treeline into a gloriously sunny day in the Abruzzo. San Leonardo pass can be seen in the background. [enlarge]
Morrone Mountains
A view back down the trail into the valley, which contains Passo San Leonardo. The mountains rising on the other side of the valley are the Morrone Mountains. [enlarge]
Jenn and clear Abruzzo sky
Nearing the scree
Jenn ascends up, nearing the spot where the trail starts to traverse steep scree slopes. [enlarge]
Junction Sign
The trail junction between trails 13 and 13A. We've come up 13, and will be continuing on 13 to Monte Amaro. [enlarge]
The skyline draws nearer
We continue to plod upwards to the 8000-foot edge of the high plateau above. [enlarge]
Rock and Sky
Taken along trail 13 to Monte Amaro. [enlarge]
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[ Italy 2005 trip home page | The main trip report | Family | Monte Cervialto | Herculaneum & Vesuvius | Palace of Caserta | Amalfi & Capri | Abruzzo & Monte Amaro | Rome | Tuscany | Venice | The Biennale | Via Ferrata-ing in the dolomites | Climbing in the Ortles | Gottfried's Adventures | Maps, Graphs & GPS Data ]

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