11,5 km

Difficulty rating: E

From the centre of Vezzano take the cycle path once again along the Crostolo river.

Do not take the first footbridge, but the second to reach the opposite bank. The path leads back up to the main road 63: cross with all due precaution (DANGEROUS CROSSING) to reach La Rocca on the opposite side, where paths 646-644 continue on from the parking site (equipped for campervan).

Continue on the hiking trail that climbs upwards beside the Provincial Ecopark of the Vezzano Pinewood. Take the next two turnings to the right going uphill across open countryside on the left (Campo Vignano).

The climb westwards leads to the exposed ridge of Monte Grafagnana – Monte Gesso, which separates the Crostolo and Campola valleys, and affords a view to the castle of Canossa.

Go left downhill (path 644-646) along a grassy ridge to the village of Pecorile. Pass through the village following the provincial road and not path 644. Once past the church and the bar, take the fork towards Càsola Canossa to the right.

Cross the Campola river on the footbridge alongside the road bridge, where you will pick up the signs for path 644 and follow the signs at the following junctions until you come to the small hamlet of Càsola Canossa and then to Càsola di Mezzo.

Next to the last house of the village on the left, there is a signposted dirt road for path 646 (path 644 carries straight on) that climbs up to a ridge that bends left leading after a short distance to Monte Pentile, situated on the watershed between the Càmpola and Modolena valleys. Continue left along a path that rises and falls, crossing Monte della Sella and skirting the village of Carbognano until it joins the San Polo-Canossa provincial road.

Turn left into this road that will lead you to the rock of Canossa at the junction for Riverzana. The main Matilda Trail, the variant 646C and the Ducati Trail converge here; following the base of the sandstone hill, you reach the village of the castle of Canossa (REST POINT), at the tourist office.


The quarrying and processing of chalk continued in this area until a few decades ago and has left its mark on the territory of Vezzano, especially around Monte del Gesso. The chalk was used both for building and for artwork, with plaster being used to decorate many monuments, churches and buildings.