Just before we jump into 2022, I was looking to visit and discover a new mountain of Greece, that I had never visited before. In the meantime, it was also important to check the weather forecast and where there would be enough snow for a winter mountaineering ascent. Greece, is a very mountainous country and therefore there is plenty of choice, but for this time, I have decided to visit mount Panaitoliko (or Panetoliko).
Hallelujah! Alleluia! Hooray! Yahoo! Yippee!
Finally, after two years of extreme lockdown measures in Greece, we are back for some Winter Mountaineering activities! The past two years, due to the coronavirus restrictions, I was not able to visit the mountains while there was snow on them. In fact, last time I have been on a Winter Mountaineering trip was in Vardousia on February 2020.
Few days ago, I got in contact with a good mountain buddy of mine and we agreed to arrange an easy ascent on Mount Dirfi.
Dirfi is the highest mountain of Evia. Although Evia is technically an island, it is considered part of mainland Greece because it is only separated by a narrow channel. It stretches from NW to SE, with Dirfi rising in the middle.
In the past years, I have been advancing in terms of mountaineering skills and climbing abilities and I have constantly been progressing to climb tougher routes. In order to do so, one needs to be physically and mentally trained, but most of the times needs to be equipped with the most adequate gear in order to have a safe and pleasant outdoor adventure.
One of the most important items for mountaineering activities is the quickdraw, and specifically the alpine quickdraw.
I have been climbing on the mountains for many years from different routes and with different kind of gear. One of the most important item for a mountaineer is the backpack. The term mountaineering backpack encompasses a very broad range of items. A mountaineering backpack can be a large Daypack for hikes, a technical alpine backpack or a trekking backpack.
Generally, the term mountaineering backpack refers to a robust backpack, with all the alpine necessities, which is used for activities in the mountains and in the snow such as snowboarding and ski trips, mountaineering and glacier hiking.
Ever since I started my outdoor adventures, and especially climbing, I was always excited to repeat famous climbing routes that were first ascended by legendary greek and not only climbers.
All these years, I have been on several mountain peaks and lakes, I have climbed traditional routes, I’ve pushed my limits in sport climbing, I trained in Dry Tooling and of course I have done my favourite -of all- activity, winter mountaineering.
Having acquired all the knowledge (via dedicated mountaineering and climbing schools) and extensive experience (via the expeditions I have participated), it was about time to have a first ascent too.
I have been seeing and passing by Mount Pateras for several years now, but I never had the chance to pay a visit to this mountain. Pateras is a mountain of West Attica, Greece, with an elevation of 1,131 meters. Its highest peak is named Leontari. It is situated between the plain of Eleusis and the plain of Megara, and stretches between the Gulf of Corinth at Aigosthena and the Saronic Gulf near Eleusis.
It is separated from its northern neighbour Cithaeron by the plain of Vilia. The mountain is covered with woods with Aleppo pine and Mediterranean maquis. In the tops of the mountain, that belong to a CORINE biotope, there are firs, of species Abies cephalonica.
It has been quite some time since the last post here on Olympus Mountaineering, and the reason was the full blown lockdown that was imposed in Greece due to the Covid-19.
Many people that enjoy the outdoor activities were forced to stay indoors, basically in their homes for almost 2 months. Though, since few days, the severe lockdown measures have been partially lifted and therefore I did not loose the chance to go and enjoy the mountains once again. My first choice was Artemisio mountain, which offers stunning landscapes a nice trail to the peak and also some fun if one goes via the Arête of Artemisio.
Artemisio mountain is on the border between Arcadia and Argolis, in the Municipalities of Argos-Mycenae and Tripolis respectively. It forms part of the mountain range that connects the Argolic Gulf with the Corinthian, and as such, it borders with Lyrkeio mountain on the north and with Ktenias mountain on the south. On its west is the plateau of Mantineia. Its tallest peak which is called Malevos is 1,771 metres in height.
It was a lovely winter Sunday morning, with plenty of sunshine and a refreshing northern breeze, when we decided to go for an explorative climb on the South-West ridge of mount Ortholithi.
Ortholithi Mountain is situated in the prefecture of Greece, Argolis. One part of the mountain is in Argolis and the North face is in Troizinia. The highest Peak of Ortholithi is 1.105 meters above sea level. From the top of the mountain the view of the sea side is breathtaking and you can easily see the capital of Greece, Athens.
Mountaineering is the set of activities that involves ascending mountains.
Mountaineering-related activities include traditional outdoor climbing, skiing, and traversing via ferratas. Sport climbing and Bouldering and even Dry Tooling are also considered mountaineering by some.
Unlike most sports, mountaineering lacks widely-applied formal rules, regulations, and governance; mountaineers adhere to a large variety of techniques and philosophies when climbing mountains. One of the various techniques is Dry Tooling too.
This winter in Greece, is rather dry so far and therefore we did not have many chances to enjoy winter mountaineering activities like the previous years. Nevertheless, last week there was some snowfall and in combination with low temperatures, we decided to go and climb one of the many couloirs in Gerontovrachos – Parnassos.
Located at the center of Greece, Parnassus (Parnassos) is one of the biggest and most beautiful mountains of the country. Its highest part is Liakoura peak at 2.457 m. and Tsarkos (2.415 m.) and Gerontovrahos (2.389 m.) peaks follow.