The Casentino Valley : a geographical area in Tuscany.
The Casentino Valley, the upper part of the Arno river, is a territory of castles, parish churches, Della Robbia’s terracottas, Dante’s sights and places of worship.
The green oasis of the Tosco-Romagnolo Apennine is the house of wrought-iron works, wood crafts, woollen cloth and stone works.Its borders are limited by the Pratomagno chain, the Alpe di Catenaia chain, La Verna and Mount Falterona, where there springs the Arno river, which crosses the whole Valley as far as Arezzo and, then, turns to Florence.
The National Park of the Casentino Forests, Mount Falterona and Campigna extends for about 36,000 hectares of territory, whose greater part is covered with secular trees and settlements of Camaldolese Friars and Franciscan Friars.The woods are covered with white firs, beechwoods and monumental chestnut groves, where there wind kilometers of mule tracks, paths with historical roads wandering between the Tuscan and the Romagna Valleys.Our journey starts from La Verna ( m 1170 ), one of the holiest places linked to the history of St. Francis from Assisi. There, he received the stigmata, “the last seal”, from Jesus Christ, in September 1224. Rich in natural beauties and works of art, the Casentino Valley has been preserving them with care for eight centuries.
Continuing along the Tosco-Romagnolo ridge, we cross the Mandrioli Pass ( m.1173 ) and we meet the Camaldolites.
At the hermitage of Camaldoli ( m 1100 ), spectacular for the numerous monastic cells in Neapolitan-Baroque style, we can visit the cell that St. Romualdo built in 1012.
During our trip along the forest roads with sceneries of firs and secular chestnut trees, we can take in water from the numerous springs we find along the paths.
We cross the Calla Pass ( m. 1296 ) and we climb Mount Falterona ( m.1654 ) to visit the place where the Arno river springs.
The mountainous chain detaches from the Apennine near Mount Falterona. The trip continues to reach the Croce a Mori Pass and, then, along forest roads, the Consuma Pass ( m. 1060 ), border between the provinces of Arezzo and Florence.
The mountainous chain from Mount Secchiata to Pratomagno, where the mountainous chain degrades toward the Arezzo plain, it is a sequence of round hills alternated with saddles and passes.
The average height of the chain is about 1400 ( 1600 meters near the imposing iron cross erected at the end of the 1920s.
Passing from Santa Trinita, going down to Rassina andd, then, going up to the Castle of Valenzano, we reach the Alpe of Catenaia chain, located between the Tevere and the Arno rivers.
Following our path on the ridge as far as the Sanctuary of La Verna and crossing the superb scenery of the loans of Regina, we find La Verna again. Closing our itinerary of the Casentino Valley. Our instructors will take you, with great enthusiasm, to discover this valley worth of excursions on Mountain Bike.