In Sweden we always went skiing during Easter. Now we are going for the beach… and biking. We got the car filled up with bikes and stuff and left Bucharest for Greece, Khalkidhiki and the middle “finger”!
With low expectations on the place and the weather we arrived to the apartment in Neos Marmaras – lucky us, they had air-conditioned TV
Easter… in so many places lambs were being grilled
The first ride
Overcast but with lots of sun later on, it turned out. We set off for the beach. Our youngest turned 3 only 3 months ago but is handling the 12-inch-wheel-bike very well.
I did some home work back in Bucharest and had some GPX-files from friends. Seemed to be mostly dirt roads but for sure worth exploring. I leave the family on the beach and play safe. An asphalt road is taking me up the mountain some 350 meters of elevation
It’s getting warmer fast and the sweat starts poring doing the uphill
Finally the right surface
I work my way up towards a peak at 800 meters and the views are great. Even to the other side of the peninsula
At the peak Itamos. View facing North.
To the East the Athos mountain, famous for the monasteries
You really get the feeling of the geography looking South, having the Eastern “finger” to the left and the Western “finger” to the right
I’m leaving the top
Eager to explore I kind of lost the route I intended to follow and suddenly found myself in a maze of valleys and ridges but hardly any signs of civilization. I had a good sense of where I was but no road was leading the direction I needed to go. Finally I found my way out of the maze and passed some vineyards.
Back to the beach enjoying the Greece that you get outside high season:
Ride data: 45km, 3h45min and 1300m climb.
The second ride
Time for the nine year old to do something else than snorkeling. He has grown so fast lately; but will have to live with the 24-inch wheel bike the rest of the season. We used the same uphill as I did. Some drops of rain
At a certain point it got a bit too steep and we pushed it
A lot of honey is being produced
Smooth dirt roads going downhill
Ride data: 17km, 2 hours and 500m climb.
The third ride
We left by car to the village of Vourvourou on the other side of the peninsula. Traditional beach life with swimming, sand castles and lunch with sand all over… Then I got changed and went by bike home to the other side
I knew it would be a steep uphill so I just kept moving in the heat. At this fork the choice was easy: up!
Wow, these cones are huge!
People get energized in different ways. Personally I’m more into the fast acting kind
It gets incredible steep – looking back:
Back to the same peak as before and then some new dirt roads going down – full speed 🙂
At one point it looked like a trail on the map so I turned off onto it and yes!
Ride data: 30km, 3 hours and 1200m climb
The fourth ride
This one was a shorter one – we were looking for trails and found some sections in the olive groves
And then asphalt going home
Ride data: 17km, 1h40min and 400m climb
The fifth ride
Started off in this lush valley
And then up through these olive groves filled with poppies this time of the year
I tried hard to find more trails beyond all the dirt roads. And I found more, but poorly maintained
wow, it was tight between the rocks and suddenly I slammed into one of them with the disc. I had to do a combat fix to be able to move further
…cause the trails continued and then you have to go on – lots of fun
Once home I realized that the chain stay got quite a hit as well. But the gear is just a tool. Not jewelry. And besides, it’s not exactly the first set of dents and scratches to this beaten bike…
Ride data: 18km, 2 hours and 600m climb
This is what all the rides look like on the map
Anyway, five days of biking in a row… Definitely not what I normally look for in terms of trails but anyway fun and to sum it up:
The middle finger… Thumbs up!