Riserva Naturale del Contrafforte Pliocenico
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Today Badolo (previously referred to as Badalo) comprises a small number of houses scattered along the base of the Rocca di Badolo (476 m), one of the most important and well-known mountains in the Contrafforte Pliocenico formation. It was and still is today one of the classic rock walls used by climbing enthusiasts from Bologna, thanks to its north face, which is nearly vertical for more than 100 meters. In 1881 some forty axes dating from the Bronze Age were discovered in a hollow dug out in the rock near the mountain top. The fortress, from which the mountain gets its name, was mentioned in a document from 1164 as one of the properties belonging to Bologna, then part of the church assets of the Bishop of Bologna and the lords of Loiano, Monzuno and Panico. It was almost certainly dismantled, as were other castles, in the mid 1300s, when the territory came definitively under Bologna's communal control. The Church of San Michele Arcangelo at Badolo and the Madonna della Rocca Oratory, which can be reached along a pleasant trail, were constructed after the war to replace the two preexisting religious buildings destroyed by the bombardments.
(photo by Archivio Ente Parchi e la Biodiversità - Emilia Orientale)
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