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This guidebook describes 41 challenging day walks in the mountains of Greece, that can be combined to make challenging long distance treks, in the Pindhos Range, near Athens and in the east coast and the Peloponnese areas. The walks demand a high degree of commitment and physical ability due to their remoteness and difficult terrain.
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|Buy your choice of routes or chapters to read online, on your mobile device or to download as a PDF to print or read.||Browse Routes|
Most of Greece is mountains – beautiful, rugged, undeveloped, remote and yet accessible. Alpine pastures soften the harshness of the crags, forests fill the ravines and springs and rivers abound and many are over 2000m in altitude. They are hillwalkers’ rather than climbers’ mountains, but you do need to be in good physical shape to explore them. Routes – though not technical – are physically demanding because of the variations in altitude, the distances involved and the absence both of organised facilities for the walker and of the restorative creature comforts.
The routes described in this guidebook are arranged in three groups: the Píndhos Range, Athens and the East Coast, and the Peloponnese. The Píndhos Range accounts for the vast majority of them. They can be put together to form continuous multi-day hikes – including going the whole hog from Delphi to Albania – or treated as straightforward ascent of a single peak. Similarly, the routes described under the other two groups can be used as day walks or as building blocks for something longer. This guidebook contains 23 route descriptions for the Píndhos Range, 7 for the Athens region and 11 for the Peloponnese area.
Walks are graded on a scale of 1 to 3. You will find that nearly all are graded 3, not because they require a high degree of technical expertise or involve any serious danger – with rare exceptions they do not. But they do demand a considerable degree of commitment because of their remoteness and inaccessibility, and the absence of organised facilities. Routes are often long, with nowhere to stop between start and finish. The terrain is unremittingly difficult and navigation often far from easy. Most of them are definitely not for the fainthearted or inexperienced.
Route 15, stages 5 and 6, and Route 19, stages 5 and 6, are best avoided for the time being. The paths are very overgrown.
Mílos – there is now a wooden picnic kiosk on the path. The spring has been piped down to the kiosk and the water gets unpleasantly hot in the exposed pipe. A pity but it is the only sure supply of water. From Mílos onwards the path has been cleared and widened.
page 45, top of page
The junction for the path to the refuge is now clearly marked by green E4 signs. It bears off to the R up a steep spur into the firs. It has been refashioned by machine which makes for a rather unnatural gradient. After about 1hr 15mins you emerge from the trees and come to another new picnic kiosk just above trees, from where you can see the refuge to the N.
page 45, para 2
The secondary hut beside the refuge has gone. For water, continue 15mins along the path due N of the refuge,to a spring.
Stage 2, page 148, para 5
THIS IS A CORRECTION TO THE ROUTE DESCRIBED
From the spring, continue up the track and, as you climb, you will see two farm buildings above you to the SW. About 12mins from the spring, the track turns sharply R and crosses a small stream bed. Immediately after, a very poor track bears off L (south). Continue straight on the better track for a few minutes and arrive at a fork. The L fork leads to the two farm buildings, which are now behind you. The clearer/better R fork continues to a building which is still out of sight, lying in a hollow due W of the Gréku spring.
Leave the track here and climb gently NW on grassy slopes towards a ridge. As you reach it, the solitary building in the hollow is now visible below you to your R. In front of you is a large rock-strewn bowl.
You will see two distinctive rock bands across the bowl and above you – the L one being lower than the R one. You need to pass above both bands.
Traverse to your L around the bowl, climbing gently to reach the L side of the lower rock band. Here there are faint traces of an old path. Follow these over the ‘top’ of the rock band, passing a prominent white boulder to your R.
At the top of the band are a couple of flat grassy areas. Cross these and follow the obvious zig-zags of an old path up to an obvious notch at the top of the ‘taller’ rock band above and to your R. At the notch (50mins) there is another flat grassy area which you cross.
Follow the remains of the old path which are fairly clear and head in a generally WNW direction, passing several more flat, grassy areas to reach a false col where the true col with a stone wind break comes into view. Continue along the path in a WNW direction to reach it (1hr 5mins from Gréku spring).
In addition, the author has redrafted some of the route information for Routes 1, 9, 17 and 19. In the main these represent fuller details for routes previously only sketched out as variants but which, because of various changes, mainly road-building, have turned out to be the best routes.
The new sections of route description can be downloaded as a PDF file by clicking here and will be incorporated in the next printing of this guide.
|Traditional Mountain Life|
|A Little History|
|Flowers and Wildlife|
|Maps and Where to Find Them|
|Sleeping and Eating|
|Getting On with People|
|Weather and When to Go|
|What to Take|
|Getting to the Mountains|
|Using this Book|
|The Píndhos Range|
|Chapter 1: South Central|
|A: Mt Parnasós|
|Route 1 Parnasós Traverse: Velítsa to Delphi|
|B: Mt Ghióna|
|Route 2 Ascent of Piramídha from Víniani via Reká ravine|
|Route 3 Ascent of Piramídha from Kaloskopí|
|Route 4 Ascent of Piramídha from Sikiá|
|Route 5 Link to Mt Vardhoúsia|
|C: Mt Vardhoúsia|
|Route 6 E4 Traverse: Áno Mousounítsa to Artotína|
|Route 7 Áno Mousounítsa to Kórakas summit|
|Route 8 Áno Mousounítsa to Skasméni to Mousounitsiótiki Dhiaséla to Artotína|
|Route 9 Áno Mousounítsa to Karpenísi: ridge walk via Sarádena refuge|
|Route 10 E4 Link: Artotína to Karpenísi and Ágrafa|
|D: Mt Íti|
|Route 11 Íti Traverse: Pávliani to Ipáti|
|Chapter 2: Ágrafa|
|Route 12 Lake-to-Lake Traverse: Kremastón to Plastíras|
|Route 13 Asprórema Circuit from Epinianá|
|Route 14 Khondéïka/Prosiliáko Circuit from Ágrafa|
|Chapter 3: Northern Ágrafa – Delidhími to Mesokhóra|
|Route 15 Delidhími to Mesokhóra|
|Route 16 Alternative route from Káli Kómi to Mesokhóra|
|Chapter 4: The Aspropótamos|
|Route 17 Mesokhóra to Métsovo|
|Route 18 Mt Peristéri/Tsoukaréla|
|Chapter 5: Northern Píndhos – Métsovo to the Albanian border|
|Route 19 Métsovo to Mt Grámos|
|Route 20 Mt Smólikas Traverse|
|Chapter 6: Zagóri and Mt Gamíla|
|Route 21 Zágori Circuit|
|Route 22 Zágori Circuit alternatives|
|Route 23 Mt Gamíla and Aó'ós Gorge Traverse|
|Athens and the East Coast|
|Chapter 7: Mt Párnitha|
|Route 24 Malakása Traverse|
|Route 25 Summit Circuit|
|Route 26 Khasiá Traverse|
|Chapter 8: Mt Olympus and the Pilion Peninsula|
|A: Mt Olympus|
|Route 27 Mt Olympus Circuit|
|B: Mt Pilion|
|Route 28a–e Mt Pílion Routes|
|Chapter 9: Mt Athos|
|Route 29 Northern Circuit|
|Route 30 Southern Circuit|
|Chapter 10: Mt Khelmós|
|Route 31 Mégha Spílio monastery to Lake Tsivló|
|Route 31a Link Tsivlós to Peristéra|
|Route 32 Peristéra to Styx waterfall|
|Route 33 Kalávrita to Styx waterfall|
|Chapter 11: Mt Párnon|
|Route 34 HAC/EOS refuge to Profítis Ilías to Krónio summit to Malevís convent|
|Route 35 Polídhroso to Stamatíra to Áyii Anáryiri monastery to Polídhroso|
|Chapter 12: Mt Taígetos (Tafgetos)|
|Route 36 Taígetos Traverse via the Pendadháktilo ridge|
|Route 37 Hikes around Anavrití|
|Chapter 13: Cape Maléas|
|Route 38 Velanídhia to the lighthouse|
|Route 39 The Monastery of Áyia Iríni|
|Chapter 14: The Máni|
|Route 40 Cape Ténaro|
|Route 41 Kiónia: the fallen columns|
|Appendix 1 Glossary|
|Appendix 2 Selected Bibliography|
|Appendix 3 Contact Information|