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canyon exploring with Michele Angileri

Vallone di Santa Lucia

In the valleys of Ausoni Mounts the characteristic element is not water but rock, which comes in the typical forms of karst, kept clean and polished by the rare floods. So along one of these valleys you may find yourself in a fascinating rocky environment like that of the Valley of Santa Lucia. The stream flows (when flowing) in the bottom of a canyon featuring many rock steps, enclosed by low walls on which old and magnificent ilexes survived the ancient human settlement in the area. A corner that remained ever wild in an area that has been abandoned by the agro-pastoral activities and it is slowly turning to wilderness again.

Name Vallone di Santa Lucia
Area Lazio, Monti Ausoni
Nearest village Lenola
Entrance altitude (above sea level) 675 m
Exit altitude (above sea level) 505 m
Length 1 km
Longest rappel 10 m
Rock Limestone
Shuttle No
Explored by Michele Angileri, Andrea Pucci; february 23 2014


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I remember ...

Sometimes it's hard to understand if a valley is or is not interesting for canyoning. It's hard even for me, that have enjoyed exploring canyons in the last 30 years, appreciatin any kind of canyon and not only superlative trails. Despite the long and intense experience I sometimes mistake evaluation, sometimes even after making a careful reconnaissance. And it's not just because canyons can hide themselves very well, but also because they are more different from each other than we think. They can look similar, they have elements in common, waterfalls, potholes, narrows but nevertheless each canyon has a set of characteristics that make it unique. And it is this uniqueness to mislead, because when you look at a canyon you are looking for something similar to what you already know, but reality has always new things to propose and new parameters to impose.

The Valley of Santa Lucia deceived me. I made a reconnaissance, which took me to the bottom of the gorge in what I thought was the most interesting point, but I didn't derive a good impression. I thought it wasn't worth exploring.
A doubt, however, was still in my head and so 10 years later, my thoughts went again to the Valley of Santa Lucia, in the light of some exploratory experiences made in the meantime. I realized that the forms I had seen there 10 years before were similar to other interesting canyon, and that perhaps I was wrong to consider the valley as uninteresting for canyoning. So I organized exploration with Andrea, and it was worth!

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.

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