Un Po in camper, Day 7 – Decay and drought ruin a magical place

February 20, 2023 – After an excellent night’s sleep in Montecchio Polesine, I returned to the left bank of the Po, which I travel strictly at 30 km/h (allowing the few cars faster than me to pass): the view must be enjoyed calmly. I’m convinced that I have to find a solution for the bicycle: with the bike rack occupied by the luggage compartment (which I can’t and don’t want to give up) the idea is to get me a folding bike, preferably an electric one (I’m starting to have a certain age…), combined with a trolley on which to accommodate Yoda. For a basket, the baby is too bulky! Let’s see if I can find something suitable because I also have to be careful with the weight.

The theme of the day, beyond the charm (irresistible for me) of these places is twofold and doubly negative. Let’s see why. I did a very few kilometers and found an area identified as a “rest area” where I decided to stop in the afternoon, with the idea of going for a nice walk, and for the night. However, one thing immediately caught my eye: degradation and dirt. The poultry observation post has a piece of parapet missing, one of the reinforcements of the support posts is missing and explanatory signs are missing throughout the area. In addition, in the least visible corner of the road, a series of garbage bags and various rubbish, with nearby the unmistakable signs of those who, with a car, enjoyed doing burnouts on the fresh ground…

The subsequent walk then revealed another corner of nature covered in waste and even an abandoned garbage bag on the edge of the embankment road… All accompanied by unequivocal signs of aspiring off-roaders who dug deep to try their hand at improbable fords and a couple of motocross bikes that were noisily wandering through the woods. It goes without saying that access to motor vehicles is not permitted.

A problem called drought

The second negative element concerns the state of the river due to the drought. Despite being a few kilometers from the mouth, in a point which should therefore show the maximum flow of the Po, there are huge emerged sandy areas, on which I walked for a long time with a remarkable sense of estrangement. Very thin and almost impalpable sand mixed with hopelessly dry vegetation have made these huge desolate areas. Among other things, full of “curls” the size of an almond that immediately infested the hair of poor Yoda, who hoped to run at breakneck speed on the sand and who instead found himself in an annoying situation in which for half an hour he had to endure annoying “reclamation” operations!

In short, uncivilized behavior on the one hand and a rebellious nature on the other make you think.

Useful information

  • Where to sleep: I slept in the “Parco sul Po di Canaro” rest area, but it seems to be not very advisable…
  • Where to eat: Here we are a bit in the middle of nowhere: better to eat in the van!
  • Camper service: Even the services are far away! I’ll have to do it for the next few days, but it won’t be easy…


Paolo Galvani

Nato nel 1964, è giornalista professionista dal 1990 e imprenditore dal 2007. Si occupa di tecnologia dalla fine degli Anni '80, prima come giornalista poi come traduttore specializzato, e da circa tre decenni ama girare in camper. Dalla fine di maggio del 2019 è diventato "fulltimer". A luglio 2019 ha lanciato il blog

Born in 1964, he has been a professional journalist since 1990 and an entrepreneur since 2007. He has been involved in technology since the end of the 1980s, first as a journalist and then as a specialized translator, and for about three decades he has loved traveling in a motorhome. Since the end of May 2019 he has become a "fulltimer". In July 2019 he launched the blog