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Monday, 17 January 2011

Into the Forest : Day 1

Destination was the birthplace of my father-in-law, a village called Nikomedino, located at the base of a mountain close to where i live. Its an hours' drive and frankly I didn't expect to find such beauty so close to my house. The village itself is nothing much, small low houses, one tavern, one small market, a school, a church and of course the people. Now remember what i said on an earlier post about the locale? I made sure i talked to all the people i could. The local tavern, my uncle and his firends who go hunting in those woods, a couple of goat herders(they, in contrast to shepherds, take their animals grazing on the mountain not out on the fields..) I gathered all sorts of info, but most of all what are the dangers up there. Soon i learned that though there are wolves and wild boar high up in the mountain there is nothing much to worry about. The wolves are a somewhat small species that are more afraid of you than you do of them. There is more danger from the boar. Even though  it will not attack you (they dont get very big in these woods) if it flees towards you all you have to do is get out of its way fast...Other game include hares and grouse(might come in handy, you never know..). Lucky for me hunting season had closed two weeks earlier. That said, the hike was beautiful, it took me 5 hours to the checkpoint i set on my gps and bac╬║, and of course i had notified the relatives in the village of my presence and schedule. Cellphone signal was very good even in the canyon so when i decided to stall for half an hour i phoned ahead...There!Done. Enough talk, more photos!!
Early in the morning atop the St Demetrius' plateau, overlooking the plains below
That's the canyon I am heading today..Photo is a bit sloppy but blame the CCD for the overexposure...
Hey! A mushroom dude!.....
Another sexy fungus throwing her charms at me...

The promise of sunlit heaven...


Lichen and fungus(yellow areas) on a yew.....

Trail shot.

What can i say...absolutely magical...

The lichen were so thick on this yew, i thought it was the foliage until i came closer....

A snapshot of the trail i had to follow at some point.

Inside the canyon...

That's yew and a 14$ folding saw with Japanese steel blade. It saws like hell!!!(i was very happy to have it with me...)

The first yew bundle tied up with two constrictor knots. The yew is for a folding camp stool project...

Blackberry bush...No berries this time of year but they are ladden in the summer...Excellent food  and it grows everywhere here...Even on the side ditches of roads, where you may find many natives stopping their cars and picking berries...

Weird puff-type mushroom. Did i say i love Opinel knives?No? Well, then, I do....If only they came with a full tang...

Moss covered stone...Do you see the little guy?

There he is!Whatcha doin' there little fella?

Gratuitious photo of the canyon trail....
Through there...

...and up there...

Moss covered ground...everywhere...

the trail leading on the other side of the ridge....
Well, if you think Day 1 is great, wait until you see Day 2...The trip was scheduled in such a way, so that i should be back down before 14:00. Remember! I had a warm home and warm food waiting for me back at the village. My goal was to explore these areas, not to camp out. Either way i had packed my smaller backpack with me because the distances were not great(even though it took me 5hours. started hiking at 07:30) but i had to tackle brambles, thorny bushes, hanging tree limbs and branches that snagged you at every step. The last thing i wanted was a cumbersome 50lt backpack...I will post the exact tools and equipment i had with me... Feel free to comment and/or Follow ...
Click here for the path i took on Day 2....

1 comment:

  1. Great post! Fantastic pictures. Sometimes it is the places close to home that amaze us the most. Can't wait for part 2!

    Mike Oscar Hotel - www.thesharpenedaxe.blogspot.com

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