A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of meeting Marian, Tasos and their 4 very well-behaved children. Marian has a useful travel blog and she has written not only about Skopelos but also about my trail clearing work. You can find her blog here : http://daysofbliss.gr/2017/05/6-things-that-make-skopelos-unique.html
This small, well-made section of calderimi was totally blocked. It is now reopen. Cleared by new volunteer Kristyn Arnold from Santa Fe, USA and Steve Taylor from the UK, who sadly leaves us today (Tuesday 25 April). Steve was part of The Big, Cool Team and made a huge contribution towards getting the Panormos trail reopened. Thanks Steve.
As much as Steve and I miss the other members of the team, clearing goes on. So I decided on Walk 6, section 20. A small section of calderimi leading to Profitis Ilias church near Glysteri. We managed about half of it.
What we thought would be a particularly tough day, turned out to be not so bad but the chain saw was in use through-out. Two huge trees had come down at Ag Ianni Skleri, blocking the trail. There was no way we could move them, so we just removed all it’s branches and hikers have to duck under the trunks to pass. We had a bit of time to spare so went down to Panormos to do a quick trim. Wrong. More trees had fallen over this final piece of the trail. So we did some work and today we will get the chain saw going again and thus will have completed clearing the entire trail from Skopelos to Panormos.
Today we worked on the calderimi between Moutero church and spring. There were many blockages from fallen trees. Not now though and the way is clear.
As well as the usual Gagea Graeca and Tassel Hyacinths, there were lots of Wavy-leaved Monkey orchids.
We started today on the portion of trail from Ag Ianni Skleri down towards Moutero. It’s going to take a few days and the chain saw will get a lot of use. Luckily, Harry,one of the volunteers, particularly likes using the chainsaw, so he’ll be happy. This is what we’re up against.
We’ve been working very hard. Now reopened is the portion of trail from Epermacho church, Potami up towards Ag Ianni Skleri. Whilst we were there, we not only cleared the trail of fallen trees but also widened the trail like never before.
The upper Abuzali trail up to Raches is now open. We’ve made a start on Epamacho church trail (Potami) up towards Ag Iannis Skleri but what I thought would be a quick snip has turned into a huge operation as so many trees are blocking the way. We’re about halfway through. Work will resume on Saturday as we feel the need for a day off to rest our weary bones!
I’ve been working on a new website, dedicated to The Retsina Trail. If you’d like to take a look, you’ll find it at: http://theretsinatrail.wordpress.com I hope you not only enjoy the site but also get to actually walk the trail.
It’s been an excellent year for the trails with absolutely super volunteers from all over the world coming to help. I thank them all. Having a chain saw has made a huge difference too, so thank you to everyone who donated to the crowd funder. I’d also like to thank Peter Booth, Catriona Forth, Cynthia and Tom and Anita and Paul, for donating a day of their holiday to help. The Geocaches also went well with tourists using the trails in order to find the caches that I’d hidden beside various paths. There will be more!
We will now be taking a break. See you next year!