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Michele Angileri

Vallone dell'Inferno

We are on Mount Cervati, the highest in Cilento National Park. River Bussento is born by a cavern amidst beeches forest, in a place known as Varco La Peta. It is not a river yet, only a stream flowing at the bottom of a steep and narrow valley. But then the valley encloses between the high walls of a canyon, and stream enters dark meanders where waterfalls' rumble echoes. It's the Vallone dell'Inferno (Hell's Valley), one of the most interesting canyons in Campania.

Name Vallone dell'Inferno
Area Campania, Cilento
Nearest village Sanza (Salerno)
Elevation loss 330 m
Length 2,1 km
Highest cascade 27 m
Rock Limestone
Rating5 (summer)
Shuttle No
Explored by G.S. Valtiberino, 1986-1987.
Re-explored by Michele Angileri and Andrea Pucci in august 10th 2005


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I remember ...

The exploration of Vallone dell'Inferno was done by the Valtiberino caving team in the summers of 1986-1987. In those years the team did many exploring campaigns in the karst system of river Bussento. As a diversion from the days of caving, the team gave a look to the canyon (that begins at the karst resurgence of Varco La Peta) and then descended parts of it (in different days), until the exploration was complete. To do this they had to find the hidden intermediate accesses to the canyon. However, they gave poor importance to the canyon, so that the news of exploration was not even the subject of an article in the bulletin of the team.

With these premises it was obvious that the gorge would end up being forgotten, and so it happened. 20 years later Andrea and I re-explored the canyon finding the few but unmistakable signs of a previous descent. The news of the re-exploration was published on the internet and from that moment the Vallone dell'Inferno entered the italian canyoning scene.

The last photograph in this page, sent by Goliardo Nofri, shows a moment of the very first descent of Vallone dell'Inferno.

Copyright © 2002- Michele Angileri. All rights reserved.