It is a Volcano by the sea, it is an island within an island. This is Etna! The climate affects the cultivation of vines not only for the temperatures but also for the rains. To the east of the Volcano it rains more than it does to the west. In Sicily there are substantial climatic differences, not only compared to the rest of the region, but also between one area and another of the Volcano. This is due to the fact that it develops on a truncated cone surface and near the sea. The particular geographical position of Etna profoundly influences the climate, in the different sides, through two factors: the altitude and the exposure. These, correlated with each other, give rise to different microclimates and therefore to different micro-zones more or less suitable for the cultivation of vines, even within the same side of the Volcano.
In the Etna area there are represented, within a few tens of kilometers, naturalistic and agricultural landscapes ranging from sub-tropical to purely mountainous ones. The human effort, in the selection he carried out on the plants destined for cultivation, had to take into account the particularity of the Etna environments. In fact, the vines selected (autochthonous) by the winemaker over the centuries for the different environments of Etna. The climate of the Etna area, in addition to being different from the Sicilian one, also changes in relation to the slope of the Volcano and the altitude. In the area involved in viticulture, average temperatures are lower than those of the island. The minimum temperatures, especially in the north side, in winter and also in the period of the beginning of bud break often drop below zero and the maximum temperatures in summer are almost never high. That is why Etna’s climate makes Nerello Mascalese so valuable.
Particularly interesting, from the oenological point of view, is the high temperature difference (thermal excursions of up to 30 °) that is recorded in the spring-summer period. Another substantial difference with respect to the rest of Sicily is in the case of rainfall: they depend on the slope and are much higher in the east of the volcano than in the north and south. The rains, practically absent in summer, are mostly distributed in the autumn-winter period and often in conjunction with the harvest period: this in some years and for certain areas can be a limiting factor in the ripeness and health of the grapes. The vineyards, however, cope with these circumstances without problem since the volcanic soil is very draining. But the amount of minerals absorbed and, consequently, the taste of each product also depends on the amount of rain received.
The Four Seasons on Mount Etna: A Captivating Journey Through Changing Landscapes. Winter on Mount Etna. Is a magical time when the volcano is covered in a beautiful blanket of snow. The temperatures drop, and the landscape takes on a fairytale-like atmosphere. This is the season when winter sports enthusiasts can enjoy the ski slopes of Mount Etna North, immersing themselves in untouched nature and enjoying spectacular views. The crisp, pure air, combined with the beauty of the snow-capped volcano, provides a unique and unforgettable experience. Spring on Mount Etna. Is a time of rebirth and renewal. The snow begins to melt, giving way to a carpet of colorful flowers and lush vegetation. The slopes of Mount Etna turn green, and the trees blossom, creating a spectacle of colors and scents. It’s the ideal time to explore the trails and nature reserves of Mount Etna, immersing oneself in the beauty of the local flora and fauna. Photography enthusiasts will have the opportunity to capture breathtaking shots of Mount Etna’s spring landscapes. Summer on Mount Etna. Brings a warm and sunny climate, offering the opportunity to further explore the natural wonders of this mountain. It’s the perfect time for hiking on its slopes, visiting the craters, and getting up close to volcanic activity. During the summer days, one can enjoy a breathtaking panoramic view of the Sicilian coastline and the surrounding islands from the top of Mount Etna. Visitors can also relax at the numerous refuges and resorts located on the volcano, enjoying moments of tranquility and peace immersed in nature. Autumn on Mount Etna. Is a time of stunning colors and shades. The leaves of the trees change color, painting the slopes of Mount Etna with warm tones of red, orange, and yellow. It’s an ideal moment to enjoy pleasant walks through forests and vineyards, admiring the spectacle of nature preparing for winter. Autumn is also the season of the grape harvest on Mount Etna when the grapes reach their optimal maturity. Local winemakers work tirelessly to harvest the grapes and transform them into exquisite wines, celebrating the fruit of the land and the terroir of Mount Etna.
In conclusion, the four seasons on Mount Etna offer a variety of unique experiences and landscape spectacles. Each season reveals a different facet of this majestic mountain, allowing visitors to appreciate its beauty and natural richness in different ways. Winter with its pristine snow, spring with its vibrant flowers and colors, summer with its warmth and breathtaking panoramic views, and finally autumn with its warm hues and grape harvest, celebrating the fruit of the land.