|Starting point||Monteluco of Spoleto|
|Finishing point||Monteluco of Spoleto|
|Total ascent||1.080 meters|
|Road surface||70% dirt, 30% sealed|
|Recommended bike||MTB, E-MTB|
|Places to visit in the area||Spoleto, Monteluco, Convent of St Francis, Bosco Sacro (sacred wood).|
This route is challenging because of its height differences, difficult descents and rough stretches, requiring care and expert biking. Also, much attention must be paid to people walking along the tracks and cross-country motorbikers who may be coming uphill on the descent from Patrico to Spoleto.
The trail starts from the Convent of St. Francis and descends towards the Monteluco meadows, where it turns right into path n.1, which soon becomes an enjoyable single track through the woods, which is also the Via of Francesco (“Via di Roma”) walking route. At km 1,3 it leaves the woods and turns left onto a sealed road uphill: this where the climb to Patrico begins and it is the only lengthy stretch of sealed surface along the trail.
It reaches Patrico at km 6,7, then passes amongst the houses and past the Agriturismo Batoli, starting a steep, rough descent along path n.6 (be careful, as the turnoff is not easy to see). The first part of the descent, full of rocks and very stoney stretches, is very difficult and requires care. Only after km 11,3, where it leaves path n.6 and follows the righthand dirt road, it becomes easier and more relaxing to bike along.
It reaches the bottom of the hill at km 13,8, where it turns right onto the sealing, then immediately right again uphill to Monteluco. At km 15,4 the trail leaves the sealing again and enters a narrow single track (be careful of the drop on the left) that goes to Ponte delle Torri, where those who want to, can reach the centre of Spoleto in a few metres. It continues along the single track following indications for path n.3 , which gives a wonderful view over the Ponte delle Torri, the Rocca Albornoziana and the centre of Spoleto.
At km 17,2 it turns right, staying on path n. 3, which then becomes steeper as it goes through lush vegetation. At km 19,6 it turns off path n. 3 to the right and follows the indications for mtb trail n.4 (orange arrows), beginning the roughest and most difficult part of the route. At first there is a very steep dirt track, then a narrow, steep single track covered in vegetation that requires dismounting in several places. It opens out at km 21,8 onto the sealed road between Patrico and Monteluco, where it returns to the start along the same route.
Monteluco, covered in thick woods, is of great scenic interest and provides beautiful views of the surrounding areas, from the Umbrian plain to Valnerina. Monteluco is also spiritually important because of the Convent of St. Francis and the Sacred Wood, 8 kilometers far from Monteluco, an area with a thick forest of evergreen oaks. The historical centre of Spoleto, one of the most beautiful towns in central Italy, which has both visibile Roman remains and an intact medieval layout. One of the most beautiful town in the Middle of Italy is the “Città dei due Mondi” (City of Two Worlds), which retains obvious influences of Roman times, while maintaining intact the structure of the medieval era. The most important monument is is the Duomo, but the churches of Sant’Eufemia and Santi Giovanni e Paolo, the abbey of San Ponziano, the churches of San Domenico and San Nicolò and the palazzo Comunale are also interesting.[Ritorno a capo del testo]The church of San Paolo Inter Vineas (X century), which contains an important series of frescoes from the XIII century, and the church of San Pietro are also well worth visiting. Dominating the town and the superb Ponte delle Torri (aqueduct) is the imposing Rocca Albornoziana (Albornoz castle), whose construction was begun in 1352.