The Stirone and Piacenziano Regional Park
was established with Regional Law 24/2011 as a result of the union between the Stirone River Regional Park
and the Piacenziano Geological Nature Reserve
The Stirone Area
develops on both sides of the stream of the same name, from the locality La Villa, upstream, up to the bridge on the Via Emilia, in Fidenza. The territory involved has three fundamental morphological features: the river landscape with its woody belts
, corresponding to the central zone occupied by the stream; the agricultural landscape
, situated alongside the water course; and the landscape of the first apennine hills
, with the highest elevations represented by the Mount Combu (350 m) and Mount Santo Stefano (457 m).
The stream is well-known among paleontology
scholars, and it is subject matter of significant researches on an international level due to the presence of marine sediments rich in fossils
from the early Miocene, Pliocene and Pleistocene. The fossil series begins near the locality called "La Bocca
" and ends by the downstream section of the locality Laurano
; the inclination of the layers and their regular sequence allow researchers to follow, from the upstream section to the downstream one, the environmental and climate evolution of the Padano basin in the last 6.5 million years.
The Piacenziano Area
consists of nine zones distributed in five valleys
of the eastern territory of Piacenza:
- Val Vezzeno - Zone No. 1 "Rio Rosello", between Sariano and Gropparello;
- Val Chero - Zone No. 2 "Val Chero, parete in sinistra idrografica presso Badagnano"; zone No. 3 "Calanchi di Rio Carbonaro"
- Val Chiavenna - Zone No. 4 "Voragine nei pressi di Osteria di Montezago"; Zone No. 5 "Calanchi di Rio Stramonte a sud di Diolo"
- Valle dell'Arda - Zone No. 6 "Alveo del torrente Arda tra il ponte di Castell'Arquato e San Cassano"; Zone No. 7 "Calanchi alle pendici di Monte Giogo in sinistra idrografica dell'Arda"; Zone No. 8 "Calanchi alle pendici di Monte Padova e Monte Falcone in riva sinistra dell'Arda
- Valle Ongina Zone No. 9 "Calanchi in sinistra idrografica del torrente Ongina e rilievi di Monte La Ciocca".
Most of the protected areas are situated near extraordinary badlands
, whose instability and rugged surface made the conservation of particular habitats possible, where geo-paleontological outstanding features combine with nature and landscape elements of remarkable value. Thanks to the many fossils
present in the area, and thanks to their excellent conservation status, this part of the territory has become famous in the international scientific world since the second half of the 19th century.
The Park is crossed by the medieval Via Francigena
, and the territory is scattered with ancient hamlets, "Pievi" and churches, and some wonderful examples of turreted castles