Le Marche Walk at Piani di Ragnolo
This walk in the Sibillini Mountains of Le Marche is not much more than a gentle stroll, with the addition of a 20 minute climb up a peak if you are up to it.
The walk takes in part of the “gran Annello dei Sibillini” and passes through the high level pastures of the Ragnolo, with their panoramic views; which are well known by botanists for the wild flowers and by bird spotters for the wide variety of hawks.
Location: Santa Maria Maddalena ( MC)
Length of route: 5 km
Altitude: mt. 1,470 to 1,530 s.l.m.
Difficulty: Easy . For walkers, ramblers and families
Duration of Route: 3 hours
Recommended Walking Period : All year round . In case of snow , you can use snowshoes
How to get to the Ragnolo Walk
Drive from Sarnano following the signs from the Piazza della Liberta towards Sassotetto, for 15 minutes into the Sibillini Mountains and the ski resort, when the road widens keep hard right following signs for Bologna, after 5 minutes you will see a restaurant on your left and then a small hut (for ski/board rentals).
This area is called Santa Maria Maddalena , you will see a chalet with a very steep roof on your rightt and near this will see a sign on the right to Acquacanina you will take this right and immediately park your vehicle and start your journey .
The path marked with the letter ” G” on your right , is on a gravel road going up the mountain until, after 15-25 minutes, you reach the triangular peak of Pizzo Meta.
This will be recognizable by the cross at the highest point . The landscape that lies before you is incredible mountain pastures with abundant wild flowers, including many orchids, bugs and wildlife that attract a wide array of hawks, the meadow is completely open to the Fiastra valley below and is a great place to picnic and enjoy the majestic Le Marche hills that branch out to the horizon where you can see the Adriatic Coast (to your right) and Camerino (ahead across the valley) on very clear days
From here you can choose whether to head for the summit of Pizzo Meta ( about 20 minutes following the path that continues straight on) , or continue along the scenic ridge . The path is quite easy as the gradients are minimal and suitable for all abilities of walker, hiker or rambler.
The relaxing stroll allows you to experience the thrill of walking and enjoying jaw dropping panoramas. Continuing along the track, descend gently to the side of Bolognola and Fiastrone allowing you to continue to enjoy the highly scenic landscape that will distinguish all the way .
After about 1 hour walk or less , find a trail on your left, you will need to take this back to the Provincial Road 5 that you must follow to return to St. Mary Magdalene . The grasslands that surround you are named the “Ragnolo Plain” and are reknowned as one of the most beautiful areas of the Sibillini Mountains .
During the winter , the area is also very popular for cross-country skiing or snowshoeing . Sun exposure is continuous so hats and sunscreen are recommended (during the hottest periods ) . It ‘ completely free of danger or difficulty therefore suitable for all families with children.