Dedicated to Lazzaro Spallanzani, famous reggiano naturalist lived in the eighteenth century and considered the "Galilei of biology."
Created by the Provincial Administration of Reggio Emilia, the Spallanzani Path is dedicated to Lazzaro Spallanzani, the famous reggiano naturalist lived in the eighteenth century and considered the "Galilei of biology", which the trail is named because of the many explorations that he did in the Apennines. The trail passes through all of the Apennines Reggiano vegetation zones, starting from Scandiano, birthplace of Spallanzani, and through Viano, Regnano, Carpineti, Bismantova, Ligonchio, Lama Lite, Passo delle Forbici and Passo delle Radici, ending to San Pellegrino in Alpe, on the ridge Tosco Emiliano.
The fascinating route along 115 km with a total climb of 5,000 M.T., is marked not only by the red and white signs of the CAI (Italian Alpine Club), a butterfly symbol and the initials SSP. The route, which is not particularly difficult, it is also practiced by inexperienced hikers and lends itself well to the horse trekking. It takes place in seven stages, for a total of about 35h walk, and it's like walking a geological museum in the open air. Recommended in the summer to the cool weather, and, for the variety and intensity of colors in the autumn and spring.
Stage 1: Scandiano (Ventoso) - Regnano
The first stage of the Spallanzani Path starts from the village of Ventoso, one kilometer south of the town of Scandiano, near the western flank of the former lime kiln in the early industrial interest. It takes a track that goes up the valley of the creek Guiglia spots between shrubs and large fields until he reached the watershed, from where you can admire a splendid view over the valley Tresinaro. After passing a farmhouse building (Bottegaro), it passes next to a famous centuries-old oak tree and descend through meadows of grasses, where numerous orchids bloom in the spring, until the bridge over the Torrente Tresinaro, in front of the Church of Rondinara.
At this point, it goes up on the opposite side to the characteristic of Viano Castle, part of the defense complex of Matilda. It now follows the paved road towards Mamorra for about 2 km, to abandon it after Casino onto a cart track on the right that meets the Rio Faggiano and the provincial road in rural building named Le Piane. Finally, you reach Regnano, famous resort for sauces, cold mud volcanoes that bubbles in the clay soil, a phenomenon caused by the presence of underground gaseous hydrocarbons that Spallanzani had studied several times.
STAGE 2: Regnano - Mulino del Tasso
From Regnano the route climbs towards Monte Alfonso, at which you go down a steep dirt track between fields, with beautiful scenery of the valley below. It goes up the valley of the Rio Cesella and you will find the entrance of Riolo, another charming little village. From Riolo you can reach the abandoned village of Cavazzone, a rare example of a court settlement in its current form dates back to centuries XVII-XIX, characterized by a long porch which was passing under the main trail.
From Riolo it continues along a narrow wooded valley full of trees, among which the Scots pine stands, until you reach S. Giovanni Querciola, where there are numerous interesting tower houses. It is held via Michelangelo always among oak trees, to the nearby village of Prodiera. It passes the House of Charity, the cheese factory, and reach the nearby village of Ca 'de' Pazzi. After the town of semi-abandoned Sorriva, the trail continues into the woods, where in spring you can observe beautiful specimens of orchid, until it reaches the level of the Mulino del Tasso, where it concludes the second stage.
STAGE 3: Mulino del Tasso - San Vitale
A trail climbs to Monte delle Ripe, ancient seat of the Castello del Giandeto, and then down into the southern side up to Case Mattioli, characteristic group of fortified houses. Continue to the Church of Giandeto, from which you reach Croveglia, interesting village especially for the two tower houses of the fifteenth-century , placed in defense of the Rio Tresinaro in an impregnable position from enemy attack and linked to other castles of Matilda fortified system. Also for agricultural driveway you go down the Tresinaro and you get to an 'other township with tower house, Cerpiano.
The stage continues to the village called Mandra, to go up soon to the site of the medieval castle, which stands in the ancient and revered Oratory of Santa Liberata. A mule track to Mount Uccellara and then descends to Romagnano, one of the best preserved villages in the Apennines Reggiano, with some buildings of the fifteenth century of great architectural interest. At this point the trail continues up to the important archaeological site Pieve di San Vitale, whose ruins are located at a grassy plateau. The ancient Romanesque church remains only the narthex reduced to a chapel and rectory (XVI-XVII century.) Restored and converted into a hostel.