The last couple of days my family and I spent hiking in the Apennines close to Pescaserolli in the National Park of Abruzzo. My father had been twice before, once in winter (you can read his post on the experience here) and a second time a few weeks ago with a group of 9 (see his post), so he knew the area. We stayed in hotel La Pieja in Opi, which I can recommend to anyone wanting to exploring the area but still likes the comfort of a soft bed and a hot shower.
View from La Pieja, with Monte Amaro on the right.
The first day we chose to do a shorter, although steep, hike nearby the hotel. We drove down to the bottom of Monte Amaro (a 2,793 m high mountain, the second highest peak of the Apennines) and all 5 of us (including my 14-year-old sister) made our way through the woods. It proved to be harder than expected, as the elevation was quick, so in the end only my brother and I made it to the top. From there we had a beautiful view over Maiella, and also walked past a couple of Alpine Ibex with their kids.
View from halfway Monte Amaro.
The second day my father, brother and I went on a longer hike (took us over 7 hours), including the climb of the beautiful Monte di Valle Caprara. This was by far the most inspiring and breathtaking trails/hikes I have ever made, not only did our environment changed from ancient woods to open ground, from strawberry (fragolinis) fields to rocky mountains, but also the wildlife present gave us a sense of being immersed into nature. I will map out the trail and link it here when I find the right way of showing you. We hiked along the ridge of Monte di Valle Caprara until we were just above Pescasseroli, where we started our descend through the trees. Here is where I had the most exciting but also terrifying moment of my life. As we were walking down I spotted this brown spot moving, first I thought it was a deer of some sort, but then I realised it was a lot bigger and didn’t have any antlers… I called my dad, perhaps a bit to loud, as the animal turned to look at us and I realised we were standing face to face with a bear! It looked at us for roughly thirty seconds before it decided we were not interesting enough and kept making his way down. After watching this magnificent creature for a while, also we continued our way down, back to Pescasseroli.