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During the first ascent of La vita tra le dita - North Face of Monte Monaco (Sicily)
Photo by archivio F. Failla
The route line of La vita tra le dita - North Face of Monte Monaco (Sicily)
Photo by archivio F. Failla

La vita tra le dita, new rock climb on Monte Monaco (Sicily)


In May 2013 Fabio Failla, Massimo Faletti, Fabio Failla, Massimo Faletti, Luigi Filocamo and Sergio Soraci made the first ascent of La vita tra le dita (200m, 6 pitches, 6b+ obl), a new climb up the north face of Monte Monaco (Sicily).

We were back in San Vito once again, Luigi, Sergio, Max and I, our small compact group of friends driven by loads of ideas and the desire to climb and develop the style and dogma far removed from what many local climbers are currently up to.

San Vito has now transformed into a world-class destination for climbers and alpinists wishing to combine their love for climbing with Sicily's beauties and its spectacular beaches. Countless new routes have been added in recent years meaning that there are very few virin faces left and although there are plenty of routes to pick and choose from, we wanted to find a line that wasn't too difficult and that everyone could repeat.

Luigi and I examined the face the day before our first ascent, searching for a line of weakness through the enormous face which falls steeply onto the meadow below. We saw something which seemed possible but from below you never know, you always need to be up there to comprehend whether it goes or not.

We woke up early the next morning and met the others at Bar winserf for a full breakfast with the famous cereal croissants and then we headed off to the North face of Monte Monaco.

That morning the weather wasn't on our side, it was windy day and we could hardly hear each other. It had rained that night and the face was wet. We geared up and immediately climbed up a thin crack, the first moves seemed easy, but at one point the crack narrowed and we had trouble wedging our fingers into it. Suddenly it was silent, we were all highly concentrated while Max placed a small Friend and got past the crux. We heaved a sigh of relief, from here onwards everything seemed easier.

We swung leads and despite the confusion at the belays and a huge rope tangle we completed the route in two days and succeeded in our establishing something which wasn't too difficult.

I look around from the last abseil, towards the sea and the breathtaking sunset and thought about just how lucky we are to live in this wonderful area with its spectacular countryside!

A big thank you to my friends roped Max, Luigi and Sergio!

TOPO: La vita tra le dita, Monte Monaco, Sicily





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