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Monte Ventasso, a good spot for every season

Monte Ventasso, the Italian Mont Ventaux, is a pyramidal peak in the northern Apenine in the province of Reggio Emilia.

Its name is due to strong winds that often sweep the slopes, mainly for its solitary position between the valleys of rivers Secchia and Enza.

Also low clouds often hide it from view and for that reason a tragedy took place 25 years ago when an helicopter rescue with 4 crew members crashed on the rocks in the site now called “Charlie Alpha”.

At his feet lies the beautiful glacier lake Calamone and the ski village of Ventasso Laghi, nearby pure water sources of Santa Lucia and pastures of thoroughbred horses.

Calamone Lake, summer
Calamone Lake, autumn
Calamone Lake, winter
A frozen bridge on the shores of the lake

For the characteristics of the track,  this is a tour good for all season, as you can see from the photos taken in various rides.

The track in certain stretches follows a famous local trail running course called “Ecomaratona del Ventasso”, which every year in July brings hundreds of runners on the top of the mountain.
Our tour starts from the village of Cervarezza at 1000 metres on the sea level, in proximity of the adventure park of Cerwood (must take a visit).

A rectangular peak before the biggest peak of the Monte Ventasso

We climb easily along a dirt road direction Monte Campastrino following the signs of the MTB Ventasso, at a cross we turn left taking a ripid single track that in 5 minutes brings us to the first descent of the day, with a brief stretch in wich we need to walk on rocks.

We reach Lake Calamone and take a tour along its shores and a break at the refugee, than we climb hard to the top of Monte Ventasso in about an hour along green lawns.


The cross on the top

From the top the view is fantastic, we can easily see the Pietra of Bismantova, the River Secchia valley, Monte Cusna and the ridge of the Northern Apenine, the Alpi Apuane and below us the blue crystal clear waters of the Lake Calamone.


Lake Calamone from the top of Monte Ventasso

The descent is enjoyable and not difficult, later on we follow the ridge of Salteria with some free ride passages and a very changeable environment.


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We return to the lake with some hard tracks that will challenge our climbing skills and a downhill along the ski track.

From the lake we take the same former track, this time directing to the Bivacco of Maria Maddalena, with a frightening panoramic passage.

A sublime passage

The last descent is along the track 661 with an hard passage between rocks and some skillful others in the last part of it, reaching the village of Busana and later on Cervarezza, avoiding paved road with some alternative dirt tracks.

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