This past weekend, we went for a wonderful hike at one of the national parks in Italy about an hour from home. The most famous feature of the park is Pietra di Bismantova. It is a historical geological formation in the middle of the foothills of the Italian Alps. Upon seeing it for the first time, it looks like a flat-topped mountain that just decided to rise from the ground one day. It was really steep, craggy and there were rock climbers all over it. I am guessing it is as popular in Italy as El Capitan is in the US for the sport.
The Etruscans used it as a fortress and there is an old church at the base. It was Palm Sunday, so a service was actually in progress. We decided to climb to the top to get the view.
The kids both did great, Caroline spent most of the time in the baby backpack (with JW and I switching off) and Vance did the whole trail on foot. The hike was much more steep and treacherous than we had previously imagined it, but climbing the rocks was his favorite part. At the top, there is no safety railing so we were holding onto the kids for dear life, hoping they didn’t try to run for it and fall off the edge of the cliff. There is also a huge open area with trees and grass, and they enjoyed picking up sticks and digging in dirt for a while before we began our descent.
At the bottom of the rock, there are two great restaurants, so we had our choice. What else would you expect in Italy? No matter where you go there is great food awaiting you. I am so glad there was food because by the time we got to the bottom, we were HUNGRY.