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canyon exploring with Michele Angileri

Fosso di Selva Grande - tratto superiore

Selva Grande is the main valley on western Laga. It contains all the kinds of beauty you can find in Laga Mounts: the high mountain meadows, the beeches forest, the harsh and majestic sceneries painted by marl and sandstone, ... and cascades, everywhere, tall or low, open or engaged, and a high concentration of canyoning routes, both in main valley and its tributaries.

Upper part of Selva Grande gorge can be descended as an independent canyoning route or concatenated to lower part, so making one of the longest and most satisfying canyoning routes of Laga Mounts.

Name Fosso di Selva Grande - tratto superiore
Area Lazio
Nearest village Amatrice
Elevation loss 370 m
Length 1700 m
Highest cascade 40 m
Rock Sandstone, marl
Shuttle No
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I remember ...

It was summer 2005. I was trudging with my heavy backpack, sweating on the path that leads to upper Selva Grande startpoint. From the opposite came two senior ... mountaineers? hikers? mushroom seekers? I don't know. We greeted each other and exchanged a few words. It's hard! I said. This is the mountain! answered one on the two. True, absolutely! Where are you going? I explained I was going to descend the upper Selva Grande gorge, and he told me what I was going to find: a huge embedded boulder, a tall waterfall, ...
It was true: I really saw what the man had described. He might have been a mountaineer or not, he might have used ropes or not, but surely he had seen those places somehow. He might have avoided cascades by climbing the steep valleysides. There were no artificial anchors, no bolts, no cords: trees were enough for rappelling all the cascades (though not always in the best way).

Back home I found on the Internet a page of Manilio Prignano's website (a mountaineer now deceased) telling about its complete descent of Selva Grande valley, from the ruins of Pacina hut down to Capricchia. It might have been him the first to go through the upper gorge.
However, upper Selva Grande is still (while I'm writing, summer 2014) completely unknown to canyoneers. And this is a paradox, because lower Selva Grande is among the most frequented canyons in Lazio, but you know: the average canyoneer is not a landscape observer nor one who aspires to deeply know the mountain environment ...

Photographs in this website show ultralight ropes (6 mm ropes made of high tenacity fibers). Read multimedia book Ultralight ropes canyoning technique to learn how to use them.

Copyright © 2002- Michele Angileri. All rights reserved.