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Northern Normal Route

 
Northern Normal Route

Page Type: Route

Location: Sicilia, Italy, Europe

Lat/Lon: 37.96403°N / 37.96403°E

Object Title: Northern Normal Route

Route Type: Hiking, Scrambling

Season: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Time Required: Less than two hours

Difficulty: Hike and scramble

Route Quality: 
 - 1 Votes
 

 

Page By: Gangolf Haub

Created/Edited: Jul 9, 2006 / Jul 9, 2006

Object ID: 206072

Hits: 1660 

Page Score: 71.06%  - 1 Votes 

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Overview

Monte Macabubbo east face and Il Dente
Monte Macabubbo east face

Though the easiest route to Monte Macabubbo is the one which gains Contrada Puraccia from the south side and climbs the southern slopes of the mountain, the far more interesting one is the northern route from the trailhead at I Pianetti on the road between Isnello and Gratteri. In character the route is a mere hike which follows a valley to a saddle beneath the Macabubbo north face and from there heads for the Contrada and the south slopes. However, the valley is very eroded, thus leaving you to scramble steep sandy slopes. Moreover the path can be easily lost and you might end up among dense bushes of dwarf oaks and beeches through which further process might prove difficult if not impossible.

Getting There

Puraccia Ridge and Monte Macabubbo
At the trailhead

The information of how to get to the trailhead at I Pianetti can be found on the main page. From the saddle follow the road for a couple of hundred metres until you get to a farm on the right hand side. Here the climb starts through the valley on the left hand side.

Route Description

  • General data
      - Start altitude: 834m
      - Summit altitude: 1204m
      - Prevailing exposure: N
      - Type: 2h on vanishing trails
      - Protection: unprotected
  • Effort: 500m elevation gain
  • Power: 1 - easy
  • Psyche: 1 - easy

    From the trailhead near the farm described above turn south and head up a very steep winding dirt road. It disappears on a little plateau but a path heads straight on, direction SE. You always stay on the right (western) side of the valley though at one point you have to descend to the bottom of it. In this first stage the trails are clearly visible. As you near the bottom of the valley, however, they get lost among the remains of some mino landslides, which you have to cross to get to the valley floor.

    From here follow the valley for some 300m until a steep path starts to switchback up the western slopes. Follow the path which gains altitude quickly. Before heading into some thickets turn left and head more or less directly for the saddle, which marks the end of the Valley between Monte Macabubbo and Monte Puraccia. You might have to sidestep some thickets and vertical passages.

    Between the two mountains the slopes get steeper until they almost resemble a small canyon. Follow this canyon and you'll top out onto the plateau Contrada Puraccia, on which you can find some farm buildings and cattle pens. Cross the slopes above the pens (to the north) and head trail-lessly to the Monte Macabubbo summit.

    Essential Gear

    Hiking gear and lots of water.

    Images

    Monte Macabubbo seen through the ascent valleyPuraccia Ridge and Monte MacabubboMonte Macabubbo north-west ridgeNorthernmost outpost of the Puraccia north ridgeMonte Macabubbo southern side summitMonte Macabubbo east face and Il Dente