The second stage of the Tour of Sicily 2019 is definitely the most awaited stage, the queen stage with the ascent of His Majesty the Etna, A Muntagna (The Mountain, in Sicilian dialect) for the natives.
Thanks to the climb of Portella Femmina Morta we will retrace the fourth stage of the Giro d’Italia 2017, won by the Slovenian Jan Polanc on Il’nur Zakarin and the fresh winner of the Tour de France Geraint Thomas.
With a distance of 162 km and an elevation gain of 3680 meters, it will naturally be the most demanding stage of this second edition. The stage includes only one timed section at the end: the famous 17 km long Mareneve climb .
After becoming familiar with the territory of the Madonie Park, in the second stage you will go through another territory of rare scenic and natural beauty: The Nebrodi Park.
The Nebrodi, together with the Madonie to the west and the Peloritani to the east, make up the Sicilian Apennines. They face north, directly on the Tyrrhenian Sea, while their southern limit is marked by Etna, in particular from the Alcantara river and from the upper course of the Simeto.
The stage will involve the participants in a remarkable altitude excursion, which from a few tens of meters above sea level will reach high altitudes, passing through Portella della Femmina Morta and then reach Etna, the largest active volcano in Europe.
The main elements that strongly characterize the natural landscape of the Nebrodi are the asymmetry of the various slopes, the diversity of modeling of the reliefs, the rich vegetation and the humid environments. The stage includes the striking finish on the north eastern slope of Etna, reaching the Rifugio Citielli crossing a path that alternates between lava flows and well preserved and richly floristic woodland formations.