Infernaccio Gorges’ (in italian Gole dell’Infernaccio) is perhaps the most famous, spectacular and sought-after destination of Sibillini National Park in Montefortino territory.
It’s a natural gorge formed by Tenna river, located between Priora Mount and the Sibyl. From this place, rich in history and legends, you can take an excursion walking many paths and tracks of various degrees of difficulty and reach places such as the the San Leonardo hermitage, and continuing Rio Waterfall or arriving to Sources of Tenna (Capotenna).
“PISCIARELLE”: AN ITALIAN CURIOUS NAME OF THE SMALL WATER FALL
At the beginning of the path that leads to the entrance of the gorge, you will cross the water streams that descend from Zampa Mount, form the famous “Pisciarelle”:
a small cascades where drops of water that fall from the rocks above form a curious effect similar to a huge shower. On sunny days its rays pass through these drops creating a spectacular play of colors unimaginable and indescribable and the moss attached to the rocky wall is an intense green that seems almost fake. Small wonders of nature that we advise you to observe and enjoy while fully enjoying the benefit that these will give you.
Here the sounds of nature are symphonies and marvelous harmonies: the murmur of the river that suddenly emerges from mysterious meanders, which flows among the stones and juggles in this impervious gorge, the flow of streams and small jumps of the small waterfalls that are heard in distance will be the background of your journey. During the winter season, the area is at high risk of avalanches because of its conformation and it is therefore inadvisable to go into late spring.
It is possible to reach the Infernaccio Gorges placing car (along the brecciated road) after Rubbiano city. You can place your camping tend in green waypoint and then go walking to “Pisciarelle” or continue further with the car up to the signs.
After you arrived to Pisciarelle you cross the wooden bridge (now is absent destroyed by debris fallen from the mountain after the earthquake) to reach the other side of the river and you start to climb the trail that winds through the woods and through the narrow and impressive gorge.
Along the Tenna river, the trail continues towards the sources of the river or, following the wooden sign, goes into the centuries-old beech forest to the San Leonardo Church (about 1:30h starting from the begin) reconstructed on the pre-existing remains by the Capuchin friar Armando Lavini, better known as Pietro Father (1927 –2015); which, starting from the ’70s, undertook the work of restructuring alone and with inadequate instruments. From Pisciarelle you can see, and sometimes enter in, a tunnel that was constructed to arrive directly in San Leonardo Church and allow supplies to the hermit Pietro.
ITINERARY INFERNACCIO GORGES + SAN LEONARDO CHURCH
Location: just 12 km from Montemonaco (AP) and 6km from Montefortino (FM)
Length of the route: about 9.5 km
Altitude: Departure at mt. 900 s.l.m. Arrival at mt. 1150 s.l.m.
Difficulty of the route: Easy. For hikers and families with children
Duration of the Itinerary: about 1:30 hrs (Outward journey) + about 1:30 hrs (Return)
Recommended Period: from April to November (In winter it is very dangerous for avalanche risk)
ITINERARY INFERNACCIO GORGES + SAN LEONARDO CHURCH + RIO FALL
Length of the route: about 12.5 km
Altitude: Departure at mt. 900 s.l.m. Arrival at mt. 1190 s.l.m.
Difficulty of the route: Moderate.
Duration of the Itinerary: about 2 hrs (Outward journey) + about 2 hrs (Return)