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Snowfield of the Cretarolan hollow

The snowfield is situated in the hollow of Cretarola, a gorge that from the grasses of Cretarola (1440mt.) comes together as a tributary combining with the bigger Angora grass, by connecting to the right orographic side of it.

The Hollow of Cretarola, at the end of the ice age, was probably a huge collector of all the fusion waters of the Campo Imperatore's melting glaciers. Waters that, once canalized in the Valianara's canyon, flowed first in the Cretarolan grasses (giving rise to a lake, now filled in and no longer present) and, finally, draining into the deep valley. Currently, the ditch has an intermittent regime and is covered with vegetation.

The hollow looks like a canyon. There are some steep jumps and near them we can recognize different and distinct snowfields.

The snowfields are almost invisible, as they are covered by a thick stratus of beech leaves, rocks and dirt, that preserve them from the heat, slowing down the ablation and permitting its existence at such low altitude.

The snowfields are situated at 1200-1300 mt. above sea level and they are mainly sustained by avalanche events.

When the snow covering the steep wooded slopes of the canyon reaches a certain thickness that can no longer be maintained, the sheer weight and effects of gravity produce avalanches that drain into the canyon supplying the snowfields.

At the moment, the dimensions of the snowfields have not been measured.
It is estimated that they could be 6-7 mt. thick, with a length of about 10 mt.
The snowfields could be perennial or semi-perennial.


Fabrizio Sulli - Alessandro Di Paola

The artiche was kindly revised by dr. Massimo Pecci



nevai del primo salto roccioso 3 copia.jpg

june 06