Profitis Ilias Lazarata + travel home, July 10-11 2022

Summer holiday, day 7 & 8

Nydri (or Nidri) – our base for the week

Index

Date Peak/Place Height PF Location
10.07.2021 Profitis Ilias (Lazarata) 530m 103m Lefkada, Greece
10.07.2021 Point 490m 490m ? Lefkada, Greece
11.07.2021 Going home Lefkada, Greece

Continued from day 6

Profitis Ilias (Lazarata), July 10

Profitis Ilias

Sunday: This was our last full day on Lefkada island, and the main goal was to visit Megali Rachi (674m), above Nydri and Nikiana. Our approach from the Nydri side didn’t work. I didn’t want risk a flat tire on the rough road on our last day.

Megali Rachi

So, we drove to Platistoma and Alexandros and attempted an approach from Kolyvata. But, realizing this would be bushwack of epic proportions, we decided to forget about this mountain.

Instead, we drove to Lazarata to visit their local Profiti Ilias top. At least the first part of the hike would be easy, as a road went up to the monastery. We parked near the town and headed up the road.

On our way to the monastery and – hopefully – to the top

From the monastery, the road curved and went up to the top of the forest. After a minute, we saw a signpost pointing to Agios Stefanos. We didn’t know what that was but followed the steps up the forest.

Curious…

We got to a viewpoint on the ridge and the steps continued down on the other side of the mountain. As our main goal was to find the top, we didn’t proceed. Seems like Agios Stefanos is a church carved out from the mountain. I regret not making the effort of finding it.

From our viewpoint, I could see towards the high point, but this was clearly not the place to start from.

View from the viewpoint

We followed the road up to the point where it started to descend. As we didn’t see anything even close to a path in the direction of the top, I had to dress up and man up. Anne was more than happy waiting for me.

Here goes nothing…
The smart one of us…

I went into the bush, and it didn’t take long before I was completely stuck, connected to 4 thorn bushes. My jacket got ripped to the point of no rescue. Once released from the thorns, I continued to fight my way upwards. Eventually I found a rock in the forest, and I couldn’t see anything higher beyond.

Where my journey ended. Please – let it be the highest point…

Was this the high point? I had no idea, but the GPS showed that I was exactly in the middle of the 500m contour encircling the top. This was good enough for me. I wasn’t able to continue anyway. I’d be more than happy to hear from someone emailing me – “hey, I crawled there too and found an even higher point 10 meters from where you stopped”. In that case I will take a bow and remove the top from my list of qualified ascents!

Happy to be back with Anne, we continued along the road only to find it suddenly stopping. Hence, we had to return the way we came.

And then the road just stopped!

When we passed the Agios Stefanos signpost (again), I convinced Anne to come with me up to the viewpoint one more time. I just wanted to scramble up to the ridge to get a better view towards the summit area.

Mr. Loco…

I continued along the ridge as far as it was possible before the bush denied further progress. From what I could see, there could possibly be an even higher point further left. But it was difficult to say. Enough of this mountain!

The top of of Profitis Ilias. I was on the rightmost of the two humps, but is the left one higher?

I am grateful that Anne has the ability to just chill and wait…

I’m back!

We returned to our car and went into town (Lazarata) for lunch. We had a lovely mix of Greek salad, Tzatziki and fried cheese.

Nice!

Trip statistics: 3,7km, 225 vertical meters, 1h:42m
Pictures (Canon EOS RP/Iphone 13 Pro Max) from the hike:

Point 490m, July 10

From Lazarata, we continued northbound and decided to walk up to an unnamed top (490m) just north of the village Kavallos. According to the map, the high point could very well be along the road crossing the top. But this was most likely not a top with a prominence of 100 meters or more. Still, we decided to do one more walk before returning to the hotel.

On our way again – for the last time on this island

This walk goes straight into the category of “forgettable hikes”. First of all, walking along a paved road isn’t all that fun. It wasn’t particularly pretty up there either. We did NOT see any summit marker and going into the bush was something we would never ever consider.

No summit marker and now the road descends…

I was more than happy about having been to 11 tops with a prominence of at least 100 meters. It was time to go home. At least, the view towards Lefkada was nice.

Lefkada

And – in the distance – Psili Korifi that we hiked the day before!

Psili Korifi

We returned to the hotel, jumped into the sea and went back to Kalypso for our last dinner there. We had dinner early and (just) avoided the local guitarist that had got his fair share of tip from us during the week.

Greek LARGE beer and SMALL beer…

In the evening, Anne got to tick off two items from her “week bucket list”. One was having an “umbrella drink”. Fortunately, the hotel manager found the recipe for one. I thought for a little while that we might had to mix it ourselves. The second was an after-dark swim. A short one.

Before the drink, of course! Right, Anne?

We also spent a good hour chatting with a couple from Italy. They lived almost on the border to Slovenia. We had seen them at the Kalypso restaurant all week and it was nice to finally talk.

Buona notte and thanks for the chat!

Trip statistics: 2,4km, 85 vertical meters, 27 mins
Pictures (Canon EOS RP) from the walk and from the hotel:

Going home, July 11

Monday: After the morning swim and breakfast, we checked out of the hotel and began our journey to the airport.

When we got to the motorway junction near Vonitsa, we had to focus. Two days ago, after returning from Psili Korifi, we made a wrong turn and ended up on the motorway in eastbound direction. I had immediately a creepy feeling as we were the only ones on the motorway. But OK, we were just looking for a place to turn around anyway. While driving in 100km/h +, the motorway suddenly ended and turned into a dirt road (!). What the actual heck? We were able to turn around and get into the opposite lane, which was our main goal anyway. And back at the junction we came on, we were able to get off.

And now we were approaching this junction again, but this time we would go westbound. Would this road be closed too? We concluded that we were probably driving here when we got here one week ago and took the chance. And the road towards Preveza was indeed open…

We got to the airport around 10am, more than 3 hours before the scheduled 13:10 departure. The return of the rental car was smooth, once we realized we had to go in and ask the guy to come out.

We had to wait one hour before check-in was available. Anne decided to spend the time outside, while I preferred being inside the cool airport. During this hour, I watched bus after bus arrive and the check-in queue grew and grew. Eventually, they asked travelers not to enter the building. I was mentally getting prepared for spending quite some time in the check-in queue.

When Anne returned, around 11am, we went over to the check-in for our airline (Sunclass). There were no one in line and we assumed they hadn’t opened yet. But they had and check-in was done in 3 minutes!

After passing through security, we found seats by the gate and could relax. I relaxed even more when I could see that our flight had left Oslo on time. I have to admit I had been worried not to get home when we were supposed to, with respect to the dog. More about that below…

Now – I can relax. The view towards Psili Korifi was perfect!

The flight went well. We landed in Oslo on time. The shuttle bush to Dalen Parkering came within 10 minutes and it didn’t take long before I had picked up the car. We could now set course for Årnes to pick up Karma.

Approaching Oslo Gardermoen, passing above Øyeren

While we were in Greece, the plan was for Karma to spend the week with a friend of us at Lillehammer. But this person got Covid 2 days our departure and we had a problem. Fortunately, at the wedding at Årnes (before going to Greece), Tora – the daughter of the maid of honor said she could look after Karma. Fantastic!!!

So, Karma had now spent the week at the Årnes farm, and she was very, very happy to be reunited with mommy and daddy! We were invited to spend the night there before going on our summer vacation in Norway. It was nice to relax here and prepare for our upcoming 2-week travel.

Karma – finally settled down after a very warm welcome!

Pictures (Canon EOS RP/ Iphone 13 Pro Max) from the travel:

Continued on day 9

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