From comments received since writing my original travelogue on Monte Venda, the locals have advised me that they don't climb the mountain.
They sit at the bottom of the hill, drink wine, and watch the rest of us silly fools do the deed.
Apparently we provide lots of amusement for the local population...
**Pls Note: The truth of the matter is many of the local population climb this 'hill' on a regular basis, either by foot, or mountain bike. There are varying degrees of difficulty, so don't be daunted.
I think it wise, that whenever you do something foolhardy like this, make sure you've got friends you can blame things on.
Good fun at the time, a 'great' time after you've reached the bottom, and an even better time re-telling it over a drink or three.
The hill gets steeper every time we talk about it. And of couse, we did this in a blinding snow storm, combined with 130 degree heat, and ..., well, you get the drift.