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Hiking on Mount Carrier and Lago di Pilato

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Today I bring you one of the most beautiful peaks of the Umbria-Marche Apennines, that of Mount Carrier . Returning from the summit we will visit one of the most magical and mysterious complex of the Sibillini mountains , the lake of Pilate , cosiderato as early as the thirteenth century, a place of wizards and sorcerers, whose name comes from the legend that wants tomb of Pontius Pilate.

The tour traces the one made ​​yesterday by me and maury departing from Forca di Presta share in 1534 and then reach the refuge Zilioli to share 2240 and then from there to the summit of the mountain at an altitude of Vector 2476 (yellow route). Finally, back down, and always from the shelter, then you reach the lake of Pilate at an altitude of 1946 (blue path) then retrace your steps back up to Forca di Presta (green route).

Technically speaking, the path ahead is mainly hiking (E), with some sections of type mountaineering especially in the downhill at Lake Pilato, in some points, if you use your hands to overcome differences in height but nothing short of an adult with a minimum of preparation physics can not overcome.

The physical training will still be required and should be trained on hiking or other sports mainly due to the considerable length of the path, over 6 hours to walk 12 Km ride to 1000 meters to reach the top of the Carrier to which are added another 400 meters from the lake of Pilate to the shelter Zilioli.

If you add the feature that makes attractive the path that is the absolute complete lack of trees and shade so that forces you to carry a large amount of water (at least three liters) this leads to recommend the course to adults or children over the 16 years with a good athletic training.

The path, at least up to the Mount Carrier is easily can be attended and it is impossible to lose the way. You can choose shortcuts or short stretches longer but less slope but in the end, the road is unmistakably unique.

Just as easy, once you get off, it is the ascent from Lake Pilate. Slightly more challenging is the descent to the lake. The first part is completely grass without a marked route but the end point is clearly visible at all times and then you can choose how to get down to the canyon that leads to the lake. From that point, there is a sudden not perfectly visible nor simple that it proves to be that part of mountaineering type I mentioned above but of this I speak in more detail below.

Departure, as I said, around 9:00 am but not before a visit to the shelter of the mountain to be made ​​a couple of sandwiches with Ciauscolo

Fork lends

But the devil is around the corner. I just wanted to taste this typical salami and instead, when we arrived, due to unexpected onslaught of tourists the night before, the bread was finished so we had to give up this delicacy Marche. Luckily, as a good computer, I had a couple of cakes backup in the bag.

The first part of the climb is really tough, especially because it has just started and the muscles are still cold. But it is equally true that the landscape quickly becomes great with the valley to the left of Castelluccio di Norcia and its Piana Grande, famous for the colors in the flowering periods. We, too, although this period is behind us, we can see the red of the poppies and the blue of the famous lentils from Norcia.


At the back we find the most northern section of the Laga mountains until, in the end, to be able to see the Gran Sasso of Italy with its great horn


Obviously, your devoted blogger, already in the absence of oxygen and overwhelmed by these beauties forgets to turn on his trusty Garmin Forerunner 305 and this occurs to only remember the few minutes after taking the first cazziatone Maury for the unscheduled stop just left.

Just left Forca di Presta I forgot as usual to start the Garmin Forerunner 305 (photos of

After this first section where the slope immediately makes the difference between who is in and who is out of shape, it addresses the central part of the ascent to the refuge where you want to warm the muscles finally, you want a slightly lower slope, we proceed a bit 'faster. We are close to Vettoretto share in 2052, a small hill that leads us on Pratopulito, a slope gradient less bottom part gravel.

And it is this slope that we catch a glimpse in the distance, our first goal, the refuge Zilioli.


Unfortunately, even here, the closer we get, the more added to the slippery slope begins to be felt. The last stretch before the refuge is really steep bottom debris and it gets really hard to reach the coveted goal which seems to them, at a stone's throw away.

Arrived, a must and a quick nap just in time for the photo with TUX high altitude. We decided to bring the famous mascot of TeLUG to do this trip with us.

Resting in front of the hut Zilioli Mauritius Emiliano and TUX (photo by

The pause is very short but the surprise is around the corner. Moving along to the right and a few meters we reach the saddle Ciaule that opens the view on the north side from which we can see a large valley surrounded by mountains.

Panorama on the slope leading to the summit of Mount Carrier

Moving the eye from left to right are Punta del Prato Clean, Cima del Lago, the Top of the Redeemer and the Peak of the Devil. On the right above the horizon the summit of Mount Carrier, half of which we are going to achieve.

As you can see on the right, the path to the summit is well defined but the lack of reference points makes it look very close but it is not so. To the peak in fact, though with very little difficulty, after three quarters of an hour's walk.

But it is really worth it because from there the view is truly breathtaking, looking south chain of mountains of Laga and the big horn are there in front of us

Panorama from the Top of Mount Carrier north side

affacciandoci while to the north, our feet are our next destination, Lake Pilate.


After the usual photo at the top with Mauritius and TUX

Emiliano and Mauritius on the summit of Mount Carrier (photo by

then retrace our steps back to the saddle of Ciaule and head for the second part of the day, the lake of Pilate. As I said above the first part of the trail is not marked but this does not make difficult the journey, the only thing to do is get off the way you want in the large grassy valley until you reach the canyon downstream

On the way to the Lago di Pilato looking at the Peak of the Devil

At this point, the entrance to the canyon, rather than immerse ourselves in, we set forth on a path just mentioned to the right along this canyon. In fact, on the way back, we took an alternative route that took us just under the first channel. You can groped to get out of the first large step in this canyon and then take the right path perhaps the easiest way of going consigliataci but one who seemed to know the area well.

In any case we finally reach of the rocks on which it is necessary to lean to descend but, in any case, the way to go at this point is unclear, albeit in a couple of points slightly difficult.

After this short stretch slightly difficult it is located on a gravel gully to the right of Lake Pilate, with a slight slope allows us to enjoy the best an overview of the lake


prior to arrival. At this point the difficult explorers take a well earned rest, eat the lunch, do the usual photo on the edge of the lake

Souvenir photos of Emiliano, Mauritius and TUX on the shores of Lago di Pilato (photo by

and meet the famous Chirocefalo of Marchesoni

The Chirocefalo of Marchesoni in the hands of Maurizio (photo by

small crustacean that lives only here at Lake Pilate.

You just have to go back hard but more easily to the shelter Ziolioli and retrace in an endless downhill trail that takes us back to Forca di Presta 17:30.

Before concluding, I wanted to analyze with you the route recorded by my Garmin. Here you will find the route on Google Earth with altitude and the table of the various steps

Elevation Profile

Distance Time Moving Time Average Speed Moving Speed Maxspeed Climb Up Climb Down
1 N 42 ° 47 '31.57 "/ E 13 ° 15' 33.00" Heart: - Bpm Ele.: 1594 m
0000 km 0s 0s - - - - -
2 N 42 ° 47 '58.59 "/ E 13 ° 15' 35.66" Heart: 0 bpm Ele.: 1769 m
1001 km 22m 15s 22m 15s 2.70 km / h 2.70 km / h 4.51 km / h 181 m 6 m
3 N 42 ° 48 '22.02 "/ E 13 ° 15' 44.82" Heart: 0 bpm Ele.: 1920 m
1003 km 23m 04s 23m 04s 2.61 km / h 2.61 km / h 4.56 km / h 157 m 6 m
4 N 42 ° 48 '50.27 "/ E 13 ° 15' 58.20" Heart: 0 bpm Ele.: 2126 m
0997 km 34m 47s 34m 47s 1.72 km / h 1.72 km / h 4.11 km / h 219 m 13 m
5 N 42 ° 49 '11:32 "/ E 13 ° 16' 24.25" Heart: 0 bpm Ele.: 2308 m
1000 km 41m 53s 41m 53s 1.43 km / h 1.43 km / h 4.86 km / h 189 m 7 m
6 N 42 ° 49 '24.38 "/ E 13 ° 16' 32.55" Heart: 0 bpm Ele.: 2460 m
1003 km 49m 43s 49m 43s 1.21 km / h 1.21 km / h 4.53 km / h 178 m 26 m
7 N 42 ° 49 '05.78 "/ E 13 ° 16' 15.61" Heart: 0 bpm Ele.: 2265 m
1003 km 19m 05s 19m 05s 3.15 km / h 3.15 km / h 5.15 km / h 3 m 198 m
8 N 42 ° 49 '3:53' / E 13 ° 16 '06.09 " Heart: 0 bpm Ele.: 2256 m
0993 km 32m 54s 32m 48s 1.81 km / h 1.82 km / h 5.27 km / h 92 m 101 m
9 N 42 ° 49 '23.90 "/ E 13 ° 15' 58.98" Heart: 0 bpm Ele.: 2031 m
1001 km 31m 49s 31m 49s 1.89 km / h 1.89 km / h 4.63 km / h 31 m 256 m
10th N 42 ° 49 '36.50 "/ E 13 ° 15' 57.38" Heart: 0 bpm Ele.: 1956 m
1000 km 1h 08m 51s 1h 08m 36s 0.87 km / h 0.87 km / h 4.79 km / h 40 m 115 m
11th N 42 ° 49 '11.96 "/ E 13 ° 16' 00.89" Heart: 0 bpm Ele.: 2145 m
1000 km 49m 09s 49m 09s 1.22 km / h 1.22 km / h 4.63 km / h 207 m 18 m
12th N 42 ° 48 '31.68 "/ E 13 ° 15' 46.87" Heart: 0 bpm Ele.: 1991 m
1701 km 41m 55s 41m 55s 2.44 km / h 2.44 km / h 4.43 km / h 116 m 270 m
13th N 42 ° 48 '23.05 "/ E 13 ° 15' 45.09" Heart: 0 bpm Ele.: 1921 m
0299 km 6m 39s 6m 39s 2.69 km / h 2.69 km / h 4.69 km / h 3 m 73 m
14th N 42 ° 48 '00.66 "/ E 13 ° 15' 35.47" Heart: 0 bpm Ele.: 1771 m
1001 km 18m 10s 18m 10s 3.30 km / h 3.30 km / h 7.42 km / h 113 m 263 m
15th N 42 ° 47 '34.02 "/ E 13 ° 15' 32.60" Heart: 0 bpm Ele.: 1604 m
1002 km 16m 49s 16m 49s 3.57 km / h 3.57 km / h 10.65 km / h 108 m 275 m
16th N 42 ° 47 '24.36 "/ E 13 ° 15' 38.89" Heart: 0 bpm Ele.: 1535 m
0410 km 6m 52s 6m 52s 3.58 km / h 3.58 km / h 8.52 km / h 46 m 115 m
14,414 km 7h 43m 55s 7h 43m 34s 1.86 km / h 1.87 km / h 10.65 km / h 1683 m 1742 m
Average Heartrate: 0 Max / Min Elevation: 2485 m 1535 m

The same route on Garmin Connect

and on GPSies

If you look carefully you will notice that the paths at some points the way forward is different from that of the return. Highlight the difference immediately stands out in the first part of the descent from the hut to the lake in which, as I said, there is no track, but only a grassy valley where the descent and ascent zigzagging make more or less depending on the strength occurs in the legs. Immediately after you notice a slight difference in distance between the return right at the entrance of the canyon

which as I said above is due to the fact that we immediately diverted to the right leg completely avoiding the canyon while the return we followed the path easier and we found ourselves on a gradient that we had back then though easily. But I admit that the first leg, it would have been more complicated downhill.

You'll also notice a short detour near the refuge, to the left. In fact, our initial idea, after the peak of the carrier was to reach the top of the Redeemer, but after a few hundred meters I realized that the path was out of my hands as they were walking on the edge of the ridge to the right and left ampii overhangs. Take a look here to understand what I mean.

Oh, and at the end of the day you could not celebrate the end of the crossing in front of something cool, beer for maury, mint for me, and the TUX watching.

Refreshing drink at the end of the hike (photo by

To watch the scenery and moments of this trip, please visit my photo album or to maury on Flickr.

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5 Responses to "Hiking on Mount Carrier and Lago di Pilato"

  • Gwendalyne writes:

    Great nice report ... that actually strengthened the feeling that such an undertaking is beyond my strength. :-/ I ask the name of the application you used to create panoramic photos?


    Emiliano Bruni Reply:

    Thank you. Well, really it's just a matter of breath. However, Saturday 30 and let them all'infernaccio problems there are not as it is a very easy walk. The application is the standard that I have inside for Android to take pictures. Along with the single mode also has panoramic mode that does everything by itself and automatically creates the view. The only problem is that I have individual photos taken but only the final result.


  • [...] Apparently I maury and we are just unlucky with the mountain huts, see the history of the sandwich with ciuscolo on the mountain [...]

  • Maximum Gronchi writes:

    Hello ....... are Emiliano Massimo, in June I will go with a local group of passionate mountain, Rifugio degli Alpini and activate two excursions, and M.Vettore M.Patino, so I'm documenting ..... . doing so I came across this in your "logbook". I find it very detailed and useful as a guide, with specific references .......... I've never used in my short trips a navig. GPS Hiking, wanting to use this tool ........ what brand and type consoglieresti. OK Emiliano you have other "logbooks" consult? Hello Massimo.


    Emiliano Bruni Reply:

    Hello Massimo. Definitely the Garmin 305 is one of the best and also allows you to detect the heartbeat over the path. Here you can find my review


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