The Paper Road
Organised by Foligno's FIE association, the Via della Carta is a guided excursion easily manageable by all. The excursion starts at the Benedictine abbey of Sassovivo and runs along the banks of the river Menotre through woodland, waterfalls, ruins and ancient cloth mills, finally winding up at the Santa Maria di Giacobbe hermitage. This entire area was once famed for its paper production, so much so that the paper produced here was used for the first printed edition of Dante's Divine Comedy.
But this walk is only one of the many excursions in the programme of the Federazione Italiana Escursionismo Valle Umbra Trekking. This association aims to offer a thorough and informative educational approach ideal for schools at all levels and small groups of adults. Their 2003 programme includes the nature excursion to the regional Colfiorito park ‘Il castelliere’ and the ‘Sulle Orme di San Francesco’ bus ride in search of even lesser known marks left by the saint.
A Bit About the Association and its Activities
The Gruppo Valle Umbra Trekking started in Foligno over twenty years ago and is a member of F.I.E., Italy's excursion federation, an organisation that dates back to the 19th century but which has only been known as the Federazione Italiana Escursionismo since 1927. The federation currently includes 200 different associations for a total of 15,000 members. The events organised range from a national to a European level ans include a diverse assortment of activities such as cultural meetings, skiing competitions or laying down footpaths across Europe. The federation's prime goal is the promotion of excursionism, trekking, mountain climbing in Italy and abroad. The federation has published a map of the Umbria area, along with the Umbrian section of the European E1 footpath. This year a new section dedicated to mountain bike excursions has been included.
European E1 Footpath
The E1 runs through the whole of Europe, from the North Sea and Scandinavia right down to Capo Passero at the furthest point of Sicily. The path has currently only reached as far as Campania. The Umbrian section of the path starts from Bocca Trabaria (Città di Castello) and runs to Castelluccio di Norcia. Its route was traced by the Gruppo Valle Umbra Trekking.
The Aula Verde Altolina
In recognition of the excellent work carried out by the Umbrian FIE delegation, the city of Foligno has awarded it the management of the Aula Verde Altolina in the former primary school of Pale. The aim is to promote educational, tourist, excursionist and cultural activities with the aid of an association that has detailed knowledge of the territory.
The association will also collaborate with the Scienze Sperimentali laboratory for the use of its botanical garden, planetarium, and microbiology, chemistry, physics, minerology and IT labs.
Located behind the castle of Pale, the laboratory offers stunning views of the Santa Maria di Giacobbe hermitage that can only be reached on foot and is carved directly out of the cliffside. Other footpaths lead from the hermitage to other sanctuaries such as the Madonna del Sasso di Scopoli. This strategic position is ideal for getting to know the whole of the Menotre valley.
The following contact addresses will provide further information concerning this dynamic association:
Fie Valle Umbra Trekking Via dei Preti, 27 – Foligno
Tel. (+39) 0742.352596, fax (+39) 0742.340410, cell. 347 3755870
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