Pescara (river)

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(upper course: Aterno )
The source lake

The source lake

location Abruzzo , Italy
River system Pescara
muzzle In Pescara in the Adriatic Sea Coordinates: 42 ° 28 ′ 11 "  N , 14 ° 13 ′ 47"  E 42 ° 28 ′ 11 "  N , 14 ° 13 ′ 47"  E
Mouth height m slm

length 145 km
Catchment area 3190 km²
One of the sources at Popoli
A view of the headwaters and Popoli in the background

Pescara ( Latin : Aternus ) is a river in Italy . The length is 145 km. The river is only navigable at the mouth in the city of Pescara . The river first flows as Aterno to the southeast through the province of L'Aquila , turns to the northeast above Popoli . Then the Gizio flows to him , from here on his name is Pescara. Here it breaks through Abruzzo and forms the border between the provinces of Teramo and Chieti as far as the Adriatic Sea .

The “spring” with the name “Riserva Naturale delle Sorgenti del Pescara” is located on the road to Vitorito about 5 km from Popoli and is a recreational area with a large car park, children's playground and barbecue area. The somewhat distant actual source area itself comprises a 49 hectare area, which has been under nature protection since 1986, from the karst source with a lake in its dense reed belt , in which u. a. the coot , heron and the rare kingfisher find shelter. It is also the last refuge of the brook lamprey in Italy, but the number of animals is dwindling from year to year.

The reed beds used to be used commercially. Since it can no longer be harvested today, the lake is getting smaller and smaller and the various reed and reed belts bigger and bigger. The area belongs to the largest bird sanctuary in Abruzzo and is the target of various ornithological studies. In this large area the water emerges in many places directly from the mountainside or from the sandy subsoil in the lake.

Much of this spring water comes from the karst plateaus of Campo Imperatore , the strikingly shaped mountains in the Gran Sasso area, at an altitude of 1600 to 2200 meters . The surface water and the water just below the surface need about a month from precipitation in the mountains to the source. The deep water, one of the underground lakes that was drilled through the accident during the tunnel boring in the Grand Sasso, has been stored in various lakes for over 20 years until it emerges from the rock at over 7000 liters per second.

In the summer of 2007, the driest in a long time, the spring areas around Popoli had little water, more precisely the Callisto spring with around 1000 liters of water per second, so that the water supply of the cities of Pescara and Chieti was impaired. It is not yet known to what extent the various forest fires, in which a fire-fighting helicopter also crashed, will affect the vegetation and thus also the spring water.

Various studies are in preparation, as the sometimes devastating fires devastated large parts of the nature park. Some of them could only just barely be kept away from the localities, but some farms and observation huts have been destroyed.

The lake can only be entered in a cleared area and the area only on fenced hiking trails. If hikers are found outside of these trails, severe penalties are imposed.


  • Immagine del bacino dal sito della regione Abruzzo. Archived from the original on September 26, 2007 ; accessed on March 8, 2018 .
  • Sito con descrizione del fiume. Archived from the original on January 26, 2012 ; accessed on March 8, 2018 .
  • "Sorgenti del Pescara" flyer about the source and the source lake. (translated)
  • "Storia di Popoli" book about Popoli. (Translated)
  • "Sorgenti del Pescara Riserva regional" book on the nature reserve in the area of ​​the source. (translated)
  • Information signs translated in the source area.
  • "Campo Imperatore" book about the mountains, the high valley and the formation of the Apennines
  • ilmessaggero 2007

Web links

Commons : More Pictures from the River  - Album with pictures, videos and audio files
Commons : More pictures from the source  - collection of pictures, videos and audio files