Our first volunteer since March arrived last week; Emanuel from Rumania. He can work with iron and so I asked if he could make me some gates. So he did, and drove them here! We will have the use of a forge on Wednesday when he’ll start making the frame from liberated iron rods we found at the scrapyard. The gates are for Kimissia where a farmer has erected an illegal fence across the trail. I don’t want to fight with people so its easier to just put in an easy use door for hikers (and the farmer) to use,
SENTOUKIA ADVENTURE TRAIL – 3km – 490m to Pera Karia
This trail first appeared in the Skopelos Trails 1st edition 2001 and 2nd edition 2004 but excluded from the 3rd edition 2011. I found it initially having noticed yellow painted AEs on the rocks. I simply followed them.
In 2019 a rekkie was carried out where no evidence of a trail was found. In spite of this, with great difficulty, we managed to clamber our way from the summit down to Karia.
On 15 March 2020, solo, I started to clear, following a small gully from the Karia end having had confirmation of the trail head from Giannis Varetaios.
Together with volunteers Zoe and Leo, we worked for seven days between 19 May and 1 June, clearing away shrubs and fallen trees. We worked towards a dropped pin previously gps’ed on the summit. This was our only guide.
When zig zagging was not possible, we installed ropes to enable hikers to ascent and descend the boulders easier.
Completed 1 June 2020. Signs and ropes installed.
Our plan is to clear the next portion from Pera Karia, passing near Analipsos and continuing down to the EU asphalt road. At some point in the future it is hoped that funding will allow us to reopen the valley trail between Djelili and Kriavrissi. Our trail would then connect with it.
An interesting observation was that in a 24 hour period, ants had made holes and particially eaten the orange eco marker tape. There was no evidence that they were carrying bits away. So if you see an ant with hiccups and orange poop, you’ll know why!
In spite of the obvious handicap, Skopelos Trails has managed to clear four routes: Taxiarches monastery, Palouki summit area T trail, Loutsa to the tower and Sentoukia to Karia. We also cleared around a water tank at Michalaki and carried out some general maintenance.
From 14-23 February, Kiki Kamo from Japan volunteered, 7-19 March we hosted Avery and Julia from the USA and more recently, Zoe and Leo from France (who were in fact on lockdown here). I’ve also had some help from Maria from Skopelos Supermarket and Nana and Silja from Norway.
I’m trying to find out some information about the Tower at Loutsa as it’s rather an enigma. I gather the structure was never completed due to the death of the owner.
There are five ways of getting from Skopelos town up to Raches/Ag Paraskavi/Pefkias: Kokala to the heliport, Kimissia to Pefkias, Kambos to Polimistria Aloupi to Ag Paraskavi and Abuzali to Raches. There are two extensions; Pefkias to Vromoneri and back to Ag Paraskavi and Polimistria to Petrovrissi then Aloupi or Abuzali. There’s also an alternative between Aloupi/Papathemou. All five have now been cleared so you can make short walks by going up one and down another in series or passing one by and taking the next to make a longer one. I’ve called these routes collectively The Five Kamares. I’m in the process of GPSing them and they’ll be available to download via the Skopelos Trails app.
2019 was a very busy year for Skopelos Trails. We started work on 12 January and continued through until 18 December (except July/August). We cleared some 30 trails, installed 3 flights of steps and hosted 39 volunteers from 13 different countries. Our sponsors #RigasHotelSkopelos and Pension Kyr Sotos continued to provide accommodation, Wolf Garden provided equipment, Nikos Orfanos kept the loppers sharp, Anne Perry helped me with this WP account Agapi Karamanli (Anna’s) and Machi Ambelakia provided a banquet, Gusto provided a giant pizza and Eva Karras donated some food. I thank you all!
There are exciting plans ahead of us. Let’s hope we can make them happen!
This field guide, written by Doctors Brian & Elizabeth Ridout and Philip Insall, is now available by mail order. It includes geology, water, butterflies & moths, beetles, flies, wasps and spiders.
Since the beginning of September, we have been working on the trail between the Polimistria church Raxes and Petrovrissi Kambos. This trail is now open but between the two points there’s a bulldozed road which cuts across it. Due to lack of any planning by the council, much damaged was done to the trail when grading this road, forcing us to take action to avoid an accident.
With the help of wonderful volunteers Evelyn & Andreas from Belgium, we worked for a week to clear this ancient site to make it attractive and visible to visitors. A sign is being made and will be placed near the road, in front of the Panagia Polimistria church, Pefkias, so that you can find it more easily. We are also in the process of clearing the trail from Kambos which emerges directly opposite the church.
Skopelos Trails is thrilled to have been named Host of the Month on their website. It’s nice to have ones work acknowledged. Here is a link to the page. https://workawayblog.com/discover-mamma-mia-greek-island-skopelos-walking-trails-workaway-host/
Join us on a guided hike from Skopelos town to Panormos bay. Return by municipal bus. Meet at 9am outside Kohilis bakery/cafe Thursday 6 June.