We had spotted a route in the book that was right near our digs, and it didn't have cables - a scramble - hurrah!
So we set out mid morning after the sun had burned away some early drizzle.
A network of confusing alleys took us up a narrow path to olive groves and eventually up to a big climbers crag. We knew we were generally in the right area, but the 25k kompass map is useless, with only about a third of the actual paths marked A few wrong turns before we found the way - a sign pointing to the Via del 92nd congresso. The route looked quite vegetated to begin with.
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Easy but fun scrambling, took us up to a rest with wonderfully cracked and fluted rocks, with lizards darting away with every steps. Lots up here! Easy walking took us the last part up the rib, where bonny views saw us dithering and taking photos.
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A slight descent, took us along a path a short distance through the woods. This route was exceptionally well waymarked, which is a welcome change to the scrambles of home where we have got into some scrapes from misinterpreting instructions
The next bit was a traverse right, with a fair bit of exposure toward the far end, but so many good handholds that there was no wobbly legs. A nice easy climb led up to smoother steep slabs that had us grinning from ear to ear
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A very short walk through some trees saw us at an overhanging wall. We stopped in the shade to cool down before we tackled it. It wasn't easy, even though a rope had been left to make it a bit easier - I had to get a shove from behind to get up Dougie leaped up like a mountain goat of course, but said later he thought the move was at least diff so that made me feel a bit better
IMG_5360 by Seana Carroll
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A steep wall led up to a clamber over boulders, but the top didnt feel too far away now, as the angle had eased a bit. Still some fun scrambling for a while.
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Eventually we were hopping over the deeply cracked limestone, looking for the summit, a few false ones causing frustration. We did find it though, scrawled something in the route book, and took some photos. We had a brief rest but it was no place to stop though - really hot up there, and lots of ants.. When you did stop though, the lizards came out to watch you - its funny
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IMG_5363 by Seana Carroll
We followed the waymarks onwards, some easy scrambling over the undulations of lesser summits saw us back in the woods. The instructions for getting back were complicated but we managed to follow them OK. We took a left through a wall and circuited a garden looking for a blue waymark. This was hard to find, and even when we did, there wasn't much of a path to follow, but wew did find a faint trace of one, so bashed our way through the forest. I was stopped in my tracks - a snake in the path - yellow with black stripes. Fortunately it didn't like the look of me and slithered off quickly. We later identified it as a common viper or asp, so good job it did
We were glad to come out on a better path and went left. We were now beneath power lines and started descending fairly steeply on slabs. There were some wires for a handhold, but so rusty and baggy that they werent much use apart from for navigation, and even then we lost the way at one point.
The path got steeper and more difficult before turning suddenly left through olive groves. We went past a wee cottage before the cables started again down criss crossing ledges on the right end of the climbing slabs we had passed this morning.
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You would think that just being here a couple of hours ago, we could remember the way back, but no, we took the wrong path and ended up in someones garden only to have to climb back up to try again The consolation was that we found a fig tree and managed to get ourselves some of the best figs I've ever tasted.
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The rest of the way through the alleys was quick and we were back in time for lunch - No idea why we carried the lunch up the hill and back! Swarmed by flying ants outside of our digs - annoying! But a good wee wander up the hill
IMG_5365 by Seana Carroll
DSCN3608 by Seana Carroll
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Warning Please note that hillwalking when there is snow lying requires an ice-axe, crampons and the knowledge, experience and skill to use them correctly. Summer routes may not be viable or appropriate in winter. See winter information on our skills and safety pages for more information.