Jaza's World Trip

Fields

A field near Pedagaggi

Soon after my first ever view of Mt. Etna this afternoon, I turned off the road that follows the northern ridge of the Monti Iblei to Sortino, and took a lesser road that winds north out of the mountains, towards the tiny foothill village of Pedagaggi. At this point, it was getting rather dark, and it was well within my standard rough-campsite lookout period of 4:30-5pm daily. I was fortunate enough to find a suitable spot almost immediately after taking the Pedagaggi turnoff: a little farm just next to the road, which had a packed-dirt driveway leading down to the house (with the gate wide open); and a grassy area to the right of the driveway, which was shielded from view of the house by a little hill, and which was also reasonably hidden from the main road. I was also doubly lucky, because — although I didn't know it at the time — there was nothing nearly as good further down the road, when I continued the ride the next morning.

Filed in: PedagaggiCampingDogsFieldsIllegalWindmills

A field near Segesta

By the time I was done visiting Segesta this afternoon, I had very little daylight left, and thus precious little time for stopping and finding a campsite. Thankfully, however, I didn't need to go very far, or to look very hard: all around Segesta was rolling farmed countryside, much of it perfect for rough camping, and packed with little dirt trails and often-unfenced fields. So I only rode for about 20 minutes more — crossing under the nearby autostrada and train line in the process — before I found a spot that was just right for me. Nothing grand: just a little vineyard, with a long road leading into the heart of the fields, and with a fence that was missing in many places; and with plenty of nice, green space amongst the vines for pitching my tent, and far enough away from the farmhouses to afford some privacy as well.

Filed in: SegestaCampingFieldsIllegalWindy

A field near Corleone

After meeting the locals in Prizzi, I continued my tour of Sicily's mountainous Mafia heartland this afternoon, by riding through the town of Corleone. Despite the fact that the town's name is infamously recognised worldwide — thanks to the classic Mafia book and movie, The Godfather — there really ain't much to see here. Basically, I rode through Corleone, and now I can say that I've been to Corleone; that's about all, as it's a plain and unexciting (and somewhat run-down looking, in my opinion) highland town. From Corleone, I continued cycling for as long as I could this afternoon, until the day grew dark, and I found an empty field on the side of the road in which to camp it rough for the night once again.

Filed in: CorleoneFieldsIllegalMafiaWindy

A field near Lercara

From the town of Roccapalumba, this afternoon I kept cycling through the highlands for as long as I could, until it was getting dark and I simply had to camp somewhere. I managed to make it just short of the town of Lercara, where I found a field that was between several properties (houses, workshops, and such), and that didn't seem to be claimed or used by any of its neighbours. I guess it was vacant — anyway, the neighbours saw me camped there, and they didn't try to kick me off, or to hassle me in any way; so stay there the night is what I did. The field was a little bit close to the highway (traffic noise), and there were leeches crawling around in the grass; but otherwise, it was a good spot to squat for the night; and I had a nice view of the countryside all around, and of the city of Lercara lit up ahead of me.

Filed in: LercaraCampingFieldsIllegalJust in time

A field near Gangi

After a pleasant afternoon's ride — through the western edge of the Monti Nebrodi — I found a vacant little field just off the main highway, and I set up camp in it for the night. I could have camped in any one of a hundred such suitable spots — in this neck of the woods, they're in abundance — but I'm quite happy with the spot I chose. It's surrounded by farms and farmhouses: but my little patch appears to be unclaimed by any of its neighbours; and nobody bothered me during the night. Plus, it affords a gorgeous view of the stars overhead, of the countryside all around, and of the hilltop town of Gangi just ahead of me. Apart from being a little bit chilly, this high up in the mountains, it seems that I've stumbled across an excellent place for camping it rough.

Filed in: GangiCyclingFieldsIllegal