the Gustav Line on Monte Cairo
MONTE CAIRO (1669 m)
Monte Cairo geologically belongs to the group of the Meta della Meta and the Mainarde, from which it extends as an offshoot towards the Liri, between the Melfa river and the Rapido river; is the highest peak of an independent group of other mountain ranges of the Upper Valley of the Melfa river, dominating the whole Valle del Liri-Garigliano-Rapido.
The itinerary (T4) that starts from Terelle is not the only route that goes up to Monte Cairo, but it is probably the least demanding. It winds along a very comfortable path and crosses a beautiful pine forest. From Terelle follow the road that goes towards the Croce forest hut and continue with a few hairpin bends up to a sharp bend, where a mountain road closed by a bar is visible, where you park (1140m); from here the path begins.
Take the road closed by a barrier to the left and follow it flat until the end where you reach some shelters (1160m) - Forest barracks, recently restored. To the left of the newer building there is a steep path that leads into a beautiful pine forest and runs all zig-zag up to the upper edge (about 1500m); walking you meet several forks, but it is always necessary to keep on the most obvious path.
The further beauty of this path is given by some glimpses that from time to time open towards the Mainarde and towards Cassino, like the spur at an altitude of 1435 from which a concentric series of perfectly circular dry walls resembling a place is visible of druidic cult. Leaving the pine forest, the path bends to the left for a hundred meters on a rocky crest, then returns to the right to a large boulder, where an arrow is visible. Going around the steep final slope you will soon reach the summit of Monte Cairo (1669m), through an almost flat ridge.
The return is on the same route.