The region around the Maggiore Lake has an
incredible range of landscapes and environments. Along the hundred
kilometers that separates the snowy peaks of the Swiss Alps from the first
cities of the Italian plains, magnificent mountain sceneries alternates
with rolling hills, and impassable rock cliffs interpose with fertile
plains and valleys full of flowers.
This richness of environments is the
background of many different kinds of animals. The shores of the lake, the
woods and the valleys are populated with small mammals that are used to
civilization. The humid zones are the kingdom of frogs and salamanders,
while snakes and lizards prefer dry and sunny regions. Above the upper
limit of vegetation, in the more steep and hostile places, the chamois and
the ibexes are the uncontested kings of the environment.
But the man is madly upsetting the delicate balance that has been
established by nature along the centuries. Cement tentacles and disloyal
asphalt snakes hurt the environment every day harder, and its wild force
isn't enough anymore to shield it. Today the last brave larches that grasp
to the higher crests still laugh at the dull palms that grow along the
streets of the small shore towns, and the ruins of a vanished civilization
still tell their stories to the few men that understand their language,
but their voices get every season weaker, and their moaning hoarser.
It is thus very important for the younger generation to discover this
world, to become conscious of its value and to actively take part in its
protection. If utilized with conscience and respect, the mountain bike can
be the vehicle (literally as well as metaphorically) of this discovery,
that extremeMTB intends to support.