6 - Epilogue

Clck per allargare

This is the epilogue. No GPS track on this page.

The previous day had been particularly hard. The heat -- temperatures had been above 35°C the whole day -- and the fatigue persuaded me to put an end to this experience. However, what actually stopped me from going on was knowing that the next leg would be very similar to the previous one and with a lot of uncertainties. The idea of making slow progress through thick vegetation deprived me of any pleasure of the journey.

However, not all evil leads to harm: I spent the last day in Bagnoli del Trigno, a village which I didn’t even know existed but is really interesting.

It's time to draw some conclusions. Contrarily to what the reader may think, I think the experience was worth it. Hikers who are used to this type of experiences know very well that their greatest value lies in meeting people and, from this point of view, I was really lucky. I had the pleasure of meeting interesting people, realise that there is still someone willing to help unknown hikers, someone ready to talk and listen,... if you've never completed a "cammino", put a backpack on your shoulders and just go... something will happen...

Certainly I was sorry for the state of abandonment of the tratturo, worsened by the fact that large funds have recently been allocated for its revalorization. Funds that were spent on signs that are expensive as much as they are useless: just remember all the road signs with the writing "Tratturo" which I found along the Strada Provinciale S. Mauro, or the expensive wooden signs placed everywhere along the path... but never in correspondence of forks! Furthermore, nobody thought that once the tratturo had been renewed and cleaned, some maintainance would be necessary. Neither did anyone think of creating a website so as to provide directions and encourage hikers to explore this route.

Keeping a tratturo open and clean is much easier than doing the same for a common mountain path: first of all, only a few stretches of the tratturo do actually require maintenance -- many stretches are used and maintained by farmers -- secondly, the tratturo is very wide, so maintenance would often only consist in running a tractor along it just a couple of times a year.

I wish to conclude this short diary of mine by expressing a hope I have. A few years after my journey, I surfed the web once again searching information on the tratturo, and I noticed that the number of sites available has increased considerably. Sooner or later the local administrations might realize what opportunities are offered in promoting the ancient routes of transhumance. All mover Italy new long distance routes are continuously being created from nothing, while between Abruzzo and Puglia several routes are practically ready to be used to spur tourism.

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