Monte Manfriana (‘Cresta dell’Infinito’)

One of the longest and most varied hikes of the Pollino massif is the so-called ‘Cresta dell’Infinito’, a prolonged and lofty ridge that stretches from the mountain pass ‘Colle della Scala’ to the summit of Serra Dolcedorme, touching also a number of lower peaks: Timpa del Principe (1,741 m), Serra di Malaverna (1,789 m), Monte Manfriana (1,987 m) and Timpa del Pino di Michele (2,069 m).

Late May is the right period for this splendid traverse. Winter’s snows is already on the retreat, the southern sun still a gentle companion and the Mediterranean flora is in full bloom.

My decision fell on a one day round-trip which would start and terminate at ‘Colle Marcione’, a mountain pass connecting the craggy cliffs of the south-west face of Timpa di Porace with the slopes of Timpa del Principe. On a rather cloudy morning I left the car at the trailhealhead and I started out for the ridge.

At the edge of a small clearing I stopped to enjoy the view on the peaks of the easten chain of the Pollino massif and take some pictures. Almost simultaneously I realized two things: the sky was clearing up, something I had hoped for, and … I had forgotten to charge the battery of my pocket camera.

Nonetheless, here a few impressions of a long but incredibly satisfying walk, first along the “ridge of the Infinite” that would take me once more to the summit of Serra Dolcedorme, later over the last snowfields of its north face, to the mountain pass ‘Sella delle Ciavole’, the copious spring ‘Sorgente del Vascello’ and across the also “infinite” beech forest of ‘La Fagosa’.