“Southern Dolomites” in Canolo
Nestled in the eastern part of the Aspromonte National Park lies the little town of Canolo, a wonderful hidden corner of Calabria, where nature and authentic experiences are waiting for us, away from the rush of every day. The only town boasting municipal public ovens in this area, Canolo is the village of the jermanu bread, with a complex workmanship. From the wheat “jermanu”, water, salt and sourdough, a dark bread is born, with a strong taste and an intense aroma.
The European Union has included the country in the area S.I.C. (Site of Community Interest) and further has declared it Z.P.S. (Special Protection Area), thanks to the presence of the geological site of the “Dolomites of the South”, of the charming Zagaria Caves and, in a place called Malivindi, the southernmost bog in Europe, that the city is trying to recover.
The town is dominated by the Mount Mutolo, with its characteristic peaks known as the “Southern Dolomites”, which include the Towers of Canolo, Mount Mutolo and Mount Giunchi. It’s a geological site of special natural value, which represents a spectacular and unusual geological setting, dating back to the Jurassic era (150 to 136 million years ago). The “Timpe” of Mount Mutolo – so they are called actually – are rocky formations consisting of three towers over 100 m high, made of a fairly hard limestone, unusual for the southern Calabria. The site, spectacular and unexpected, has attracted and attracts many climbing enthusiasts, who have plotted several ways.
On the slopes of Mount Giunchi, at 575 m above sea level, there are instead the Zagaria Caves, the result of the passage and of the infiltration of water in a karst area. Geologists refer to it as “tectonic window” for the presence of the oldest rocks in the midst of younger rocks. Featuring colorful stalactites, the caves are inhabited by numerous cave crickets.
Our excursion begins near Canolo Vecchio, near the quarry immediately downstream of the country. Passed a creek and a few switchbacks that wind at the base of the “Southern Dolomites”, a small road leads to the top, where a trail is developed on the plateau on top of the three rocky towers. From here, the view is wide and breathtaking, opened on Gerace, Locri and Mount Tre Pizzi, as well as on the Ionian coast.
|Starting location||From the quarry near Canolo Vecchio|
|Arrival location||Plateau on the “Southern Dolomites”.
Then return on the same path to the quarry near Canolo Vecchio.
|Difference in altitude||279 m up and around 100 m down|
|Minimum altitude||About 400 m above sea level (the quarry)|
|Maximum altitude||679 m above sea level (plateau on the “Southern Dolomites”)|
|Periods of accessibility||All the year|