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Posted by on Sep 27, 2013 in cycling and bike pics | 0 comments

A mountain bike ride to Monte Inici

A mountain bike ride to Monte Inici

It’s been a busy season and the free time I had, I spent riding my bike instead of writing about it. Last weekend Alessandro Ferrara from Bikes and Lemons in Palermo and I did a ride to Monte Inici near the town of Castellammare del Golfo and I made lots of pics so I thought it would be nice to share those with you guys.

The ride started in the coastal town of Balestrate and from there we took the SS187 in the direction of Castellammare del Golfo.

Alessandro Ferrara on the SS1887 in the direction of Castellammare.

Alessandro Ferrara on the SS1887 in the direction of Castellammare.

When we arrived in the town of Castellammare we turned left in the direction of Segesta and after a few kilometers we arrived at the road that leads to the entrance of the wood and the start of the climb.

The road to the entrance of the wood.

The road to the entrance of the wood.

Monte Inici seen from the road with an olive grove in the foreground.

Monte Inici seen from the road with an olive grove in the foreground.

A dirt road to Monte Inici

A dirt road to Monte Inici

The dirt road in the wood starts to climb immediately, but after a few hairpins we arrived at an easy stretch which is almost flat for a few hundred meters. On the next photo you’ll see a water fountain. Keep in mind that you can only drink the water from these fountains if it’s “potabile”. In this case there’s a sign saying “acqua non potabile” so you can’t drink it!

A water fountain in the wood on Monte Inici.

A water fountain in the wood on Monte Inici.

Soon the road started to climb again and we had a great view of the valley below.

The view from Monte Inici.

The view from Monte Inici.

We got back on our bikes and soon we arrived at a 700 meter long stretch with a 14.9% average. After this steeper part, the gradients are around 7% for a while.

Following the dirt road on Monte Inici.

Following the dirt road on Monte Inici.

We stopped at a panoramic point from where you see a part of the Golfo di Castellammare and in the distance the town of Balestrate.

Monte Inici with the Golfo di Castellammare and Balestrate in the distance.

Monte Inici with the Golfo di Castellammare and Balestrate in the distance.

My Cannondale F4 on Monte Inici.

My Cannondale F4 on Monte Inici.

The dirt road we followed out of the wood on Monte Inici.

The dirt road we followed out of the wood on Monte Inici.

After a few kilometers we arrived at an open plain, where the road descends for a bit. We passed a few vineyards and we were ready for the second part of the climb to the top of Monte Inici.

The start of the second part of the climb.

The start of the second part of the climb.

After some very steep stretches we arrived at a monument for the firemen who in 1992 died in a big fire on Monte Inici.

Riding towards the monument.

Riding towards the monument.

The monument for the Sicilian firemen who died in 1992.

The monument for the Sicilian firemen who died in 1992.

Near the top we arrived at another wood, saw signs for a watch tower and decided to go and take a look. Unfortunately the tower was literally in the clouds, so we didn’t have the best views. I guess I just have to go back one day (poor me 🙂 ).

Following the road to the watchtower.

Following the road to the watchtower.

My Cannondale F4 near the watchtower, the highest point on the mountain.

My Cannondale F4 near the watchtower, the highest point on the mountain.

After our visit to the watch tower we started to descend:

On the descend with great views of the Golfo di Castellammare.

On the descend with great views of the Golfo di Castellammare.

On the descend towards Castellammare del Golfo.

On the descend towards Castellammare del Golfo.

On the descend: Monte Inici.

On the descend: Monte Inici.

On the descend

On the descend

On the descend from Monte Inici.

On the descend from Monte Inici.

After a few kilometers we arrived at a panoramic point with great views of the Golfo di Castellammare and the town of Castellammare del Golfo!

The view from the panoramic point.

The view from the panoramic point.

My Cannondale F4 at the panoramic point.

My Cannondale F4 at the panoramic point.

Enjoying the view!

Enjoying the view!

We enjoyed the views for bit and got back on our bikes.

Alessandro on the descend from Monte Inici.

Alessandro on the descend from Monte Inici.

Descending with great views!

Descending with great views!

Near the end of the descend we stopped and took the last few pictures:

On Monte Inici.

On Monte Inici.

A view of Castellammare del Golfo.

A view of Castellammare del Golfo.

The dirt road ends close to Hotel Belvedere from where you can follow an asphalt road towards the SS187. We entered the SS187 close to a panoramic point where most tourists take pictures of the town of Castellammare del Golfo below and followed this road all the way to Balestrate.

Total distance 72 km and 1300 m ascent.

I’ll be checking out more MTB routes in the future, but this is definitely one I can already recommend!

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