Monte la Mucchia seen from the south-west
Monte la Mucchia
is one of the near 2000ers of Montagna del Morrone
the mountain chain east of Sulmona
in the Abruzzo Region
of Appennino Centrale
in central Italy. It is located central in the range, which rises out of the surrounding valley for about 1800m. Its mountains are mostly round-topped and Monte la Mucchia
is no exception. The range, which belongs to the greater Majella Range
, but is separated from the latter by the Passo San Leonardo
road pass, is roughly 15km long, starting at Monte Rotella
in the north and ending at twin peaked Monte Mileto
in the south.
Monte la Mucchia
is the second summit from the south, standing high above the saddle, which separates it from Monte Mileto
. Its south face is a 100m vertical drop before gradually turning into the smooth slopes that abound on Montagna del Morrone
. Its location just across Passo San Leonardo
from the highest mountains of the Majella Range
makes it a perfect lookout. Moreover Gran Sasso
and the mountains in the Abruzzo National Park
an on a vast display here.
In general elevation differences between trailheads and the summits of Montagna del Morrone
are huge but here, in the southern part of the chain things are different. Passo San Leonardo
can be easily reached by car (even though seismic activity in the area often shuts down the roads into the mountains and creates serious cracks and bumps) and from there you'll have to scale about 800m only. Thus quite often Monte la Mucchia
is climbed in tandem with its neighbour Monte Mileto
(1920m) or even the highpoint of the chain, Monte Morrone
(2061m). This latter stands to the north-west of Monte la Mucchia
, across another, wider saddle. Even though it is the highpoint of the range, its location, far from any possible trailheads ensures it is rarely climbed.
360° Summit Panorama
360° Summit Panorama from Monte la Mucchia
Monte Morrone and Monte la Mucchia seen during the traverse from Monte Mileto
The best trailhead for Monte la Mucchia
and the north of Montagna del Morrone
is at the road pass Passo San Leonardo
, which can be reached as follows from the closest airports:
- From Rome:
- Take motorway E80 / A24 from Rome to Torano.
- Switch to motorway A25, direction Pescara.
- At the exit Pratola Peligna / Sulmona switch to SS17.
- After Sulmona switch to SR487 through Pacentro and on to Passo San Leonardo.
- From Pescara
- Take motorway E80 / A25 westward in direction Rome.
- At the exit Pratola Peligna / Sulmona turn off onto SS17 through Sulmona and to SR487 to Passo San Leonardo as described above.
On the traverse between Monte Mileto and Monte la Mucchia
From Passo San Leonardo
the route to Monte la Mucchia
is rather straightforward. You leave the chapel in the path towards the north, where a narrow path winds up steeply through beech and oak forest. Above the timberline the trails to Monte Mileto
and Monte la Mucchia
split, with the latter heading for the saddle between the two mountains. Head up a valley heading directly towards Monte Morrone
, to climb Monte la Mucchia
from the north-west. There are no difficulties, except for snow fields which can linger far into early summer.
For descent there is the option of a loop around Monte Mileto. Descend towards the northwest to the next saddle from where a large loop trail leads around Monte Mileto
until you reach a wide dirt road which takes you back to the aforementioned intersection just above the timberline. This loop requires an additional 400m elevation loss and gain but offers great views of the typical terrain of Montagna del Morrone
There is a second route, starting in the hamlet Roccacaramánico
starting at 1000m. It negotiates a dense forest to the north of Rava dell'Inferno
, an extremely steep ravine coming down from the saddle between Monte Mileto
and Monte le Mucchia
Monte la Mucchia
is part of Parco Nazionale della Majella
. The usual restrictions apply. For more information see the park's website
There's ample accommodation options in the area, however rather hard to find. Google searches often end up at the tripadvisor, casamundo or booking.com portals. There is a thriving community of British expatriates, many of whom offer apartments for rent. Maybe a good starting point is this site
Closer to the mountain, there's Rifugio Pietro Celidonio
on Passo San Leonardo
. Also, a shelter lies to the south of Monte la Mucchia
, Casa Capoposto
. It can also be directly reached from Passo San Leonardo
The Majella Main Ridge
Maps & Books
- Digital Maps
- Regular Maps
Edizioni il Lupo