HORSE RIDING IN THE EREI MOUNTAINS
Would you like to discover the most hidden places in the heart of Sicily? Why not choose to enjoy the journey on horseback? Get on: we’re off! We are at an average altitude of 700 metres above sea level. The length of our trail is about 25 km. The technical difficulty is medium-low. The highlands we will cross are part of the Erei Mountains, of limestone origin. In the past, from the sandy ground, sulphur was extracted.
Remember to wear boots, gaiters and a helmet. Last but not least: let’s check the calendar and make sure to plan our holiday in a period from Spring to the first month of summer. That is the time with the best weather conditions: we won’t get too tired, and we’ll enjoy the ride. Now we’re really ready to go!
Our journey winds through the Rossomanno Grottascura Bellia Nature Reserve, which extends between the municipalities of Enna, Aidone and Piazza Armerina. Let’s start from the vicinity of the Parco della Ronza, a large green area equipped for picnics, largely made up of exogenous eucalyptus plants: in the 1960s they wanted to start a paper mill in this area, but the project failed and so Mediterranean scrub in the area is home to numerous specimens of these splendid trees.
Let’s proceed for 15 km Southwest, towards the Montagna di Marzo (March Mountain). High hills surround the mountain. Here pines, oaks, and eucalyptus grow. During warm seasons we can also find wild daisies, poppies and irises. The landscape opens east on Cozzo Rametta, south on Monte Manganello, and west on Monte Polino. On the northern side, we can see Monte Ramursura and the districts of Serra d’Api and Balatella. All these places are high-value archaeological sites.
We continue 7 kilometres southwards and reach the territory of Barrafranca, where our trail ends. Here we find Lake Olivo. Like almost all Sicilian lakes, it has an artificial origin. It was created in the 1980s by damming the stream of the same name river. In this lake lives a specimen of fish that is not easy to find in other Sicilian lakes: the pike. For this reason, many fishermen love fishing in this place.
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