Every now and then I try to visit one of my favourite outdoor locations of Greece, and specifically Mt. Parnitha which is located just 30 minutes far from Athens city centre. Mt. Parnitha is located in Attiki province, 25km N from the city of Athens. It is one of the 4 mountains(the others are Immitos, Penteli and Poikilo) that surround the circular plain, in which the city of Athens is built. Mt Parnitha is the tallest and more impressive among the mountains that surround Athens.
Autumn in Greece is a lovely season and especially for outdoor activities such as rock climbing. Recently, I got again the chance to go to explore a newly established route in the area of Ermionida and specifically by Katafyki Ravine. On May 2022, I had the opportunity to climb a beautiful multi-pitch route, MAIA which is located on the west wall in the ravine of Katafyki, and specifically, between the Katafyki Main Crag and the Petrogerakas Crag.
In Katafyki ravine there are more than 70 sport climbing routes and a handful of multi-pitch routes. Most of the routes were established around 2000-2001 from Jim Titt.
Recently and with the active involvement of the local climbing community, the need of more multi-pitch routes arose and after MAIA one more new route was established and bolted in a crag named “Pleiades“. The name of this new route is Taygete.
Once upon a time, back in the 2000’s, a climbing revolution occurred in Ermionida, East Peloponnese. The British climber, Jim Titt, and the German Inge Zaczek went and equipped more than 200 routes on the area’s excellent limestone rocks, with stainless steel bolts. They spent a lot of their time, money and effort for the development of sport climbing in the area and we are thankful for it.
In 2021, the local climbing community, with the aid and support of the Municipality of Ermionida and Tripolis Mountaineering Club, carried out maintenance works on the various crags and replaced several anchors, with new high quality and certified material.
In 2022, a new crag (the 8th in the region), Petrogerakas crag was developed near Katafyki Gorge. In addition, three new sectors were bolted in Castle Thermisia (Orias’ Wall, Leon’s Wall and Byzantine Wall) and several more routes in the crags of Ermionida.
It has been quite some time since my last visit in the area of Meteora, and due to the fact the Hellenic Federation of Mountaineering & Climbing was organising the annual meet up of the climbing community of Greece, I did not loose the chance to join the festivities and be part in of the most spectacular areas of Greece.
Meteora includes about 170 conglomerate summits of various shapes and types, as massive mountains, rocky pinnacles, minor peaks and spires, some of which are truly amazing and bizarre. The range overlooks the village of Kastràki and the town of Kalabàka and features about 850 multi-pitch and single pitch routes. Due to their singularity and a bit of mistery surrounding the place, in addition to the presence of various monasteries, the towers of Meteora are quite famous all over the world.
Summer time in Greece, means sun and high temperatures and most of the people visit the seaside and the islands of the country. Though, for me, summer time means a visit to one of my favourite -amongst others- areas of mainland Greece, Tzoumerka (or Athamanika).
Like every time I visit the area, I use as a base the Pramanta Mountain Refuge which is located few kilometres far from the village of Pramanta and under the Strogoula peak. One of the nicest things of that location, is that you can use your tent surrounded by the beautiful forest, with stunning view of Strogoula and by having all the comforts of the mountain refuge.
One of my favourite locations in Greece for outdoor activities is Mt. Parnitha which is located just 30 minutes far from Athens city centre. Mt. Parnitha is located in Attiki province, 25km N from the city of Athens.It is one of the 4 mountains(the others are Immitos, Penteli and Poikilo) that surround the circular plain, in which the city of Athens is built. Mt Parnitha is the talllest and more impressive among the mountains that surround Athens.
Every now and then, I try to visit the area of Mt. Parnitha either for hiking or climbing activities. Though, for quite some time now, I had in my bucket list to visit the area of Kato Flabouri and climb the first ever route that was climbed in the area. This route is known as Klassiki (classic) or by the names of the first ascenders – Michailides, Tsamakides, Liagos, Idosides.
The last few months I was mostly focused on sport and trad climbing activities, nevertheless, one of my favourite outdoor activities is hiking, especially when I have the chance to hike together with great company. In fact, on this trip, we had a goal to explore some of the nicest -family friendly- hikes in the area of Evrytania. Having visited the Mikro Panta Vrechi, we wanted to explore more and we visited a lovely short trail, that I have also hiked in the past, the trail that leads to the Black Cave (Mavri Spilia).
There are several areas in Greece that I always want to dedicate more time exploring them, but for one or the other reason, I do not visit them that often. This is the region of Evrytania. Evrytania boasts to be the Alpine Greece. The well wooded mountain of Tymfristos and the high altitude has formed a unique and rare unspoiled beauty of dense fir forests and traditionally built little villages. The mountainous region of Evrytania has a wide range villages around the city of Karpenisi and it is rather popular as a winter destination as it has a ski centre on Mount Tymfristos and offers numerous outdoor activities like rafting in Karpenissiotis River and horse back riding in the forests.
Rock climbing is an activity that is done outdoors and provides a feeling unlike any other outdoor activity. To reach that feeling, though, you need to have the correct gear to keep you safe in case of a fall. A climbing harness is a crucial piece of equipment: it’s the contact point between you, your rope and your belayer (the person on the ground on the other end of the rope to stop you from falling).
There are many climbing harness options to choose from and it all depends what kind of climbing you are planning to do and how the specific harness fits on your body.
Tzoumerka (or Athamanika), characterised by the mountains, the rugged landscape and the dense greenery, have the water element omnipresent in order to offer its freshness and balance through its everlasting movement! Thus, on the one hand there is the Acheloos river with its unique beaches, and on the other the Theodoriana village and its unique, twin waterfalls of Souda.