_the excursion

The five-day period of 24-28 October was the second Aventura for 2009. 19 JEEPs & SUVs with 52 people started from Thessaloniki and the rest of northern Greece for the longest in duration and largest in number of crews organized Aventura so far. A super experience in continental nature!

_Saturday, October 24, 2009

The appointment was on Saturday morning outside Krania, Grevena, in the area of the guesthouse La Moara at the entrance to the Valia Kalda Valley. After first getting to know the new crews and after the established rite of pasting the stickers of Explosivo and the sponsors, we set off for the first route under rain. Rain means mud, mud means playtime for drivers, so the mood soars! Shortly after the village starts one of the dirt roads – entrances to Valia Kalda (= warm valley in Vlachika dialect), which after 19km takes us to the valley. An amazing landscape that is dominated by black pine and beech. At the end of the road, after a mud bath of four-wheel drive vehicles, Hercules, a local representative of Trekking, waited for us for a hike – familiarization in the area. After about 1.5 hours on a circular route we returned to the jeeps for a quick snack. Snacking and quick departure since the kilometers we had to cover to get to Zagorohoria were many and muddy. After a super climb from the valley we catch the asphalt road that leads to Vovousa. A few kilometers on the asphalt road up to Vovousa and we enter the dirt road again. An amazing verdant, muddy path and at the end a very nice refreshing passage through a stream with plenty of water. In about 45 minutes we were in the Gardens and the tower – guesthouse “Baya”. After we settled in our rooms we ended up in a tavern of the village for food and reprograming for the next day, since the heavy rainfall that continued would not let us cross the gorge of Vikos. After a short meeting of the leaders, two suggestions are dropped on the table (except ribs). A hard one and a soft one. The hard one was referring to waking up early in the morning, driving to Little Papigo, hiking 3 hours to the shelter of Gamila and 1 hour to Drakolimni. And of course, another so for the return. Our second choice was a later awakening, hiking on the Brandetou staircase and the Beloi position (stunning view to the Vikos gorge) and a walk in the stone bridges of Zagori. After sharing in 2 groups, we adjust our clocks with the new time and leave to go get some rest.

_Sunday, October 25, 2009

The second day will find us divided into two groups. The smallest group (as expected) with 18 people started early in the morning for Small Papigo and Drakolimni and the largest after breakfast, for the walk on a staircase of Brandetou, Beloi and stone bridges. The afternoon will find us all together in the tavern of Aristi sharing our experiences with each other. The first group talked about the difficulty of the route and the fantastic landscape of Drakolimni and second one about the ribs and the short skewers in Vradeto !!!

_Monday, October 26, 2009

Third day of the event and morning departure to Tzoumerka. The route we followed had a nice muddy dirt track to Zagorohoria, refuelling on the old bridge of Balduma and ascent to Syrrakos from Mega Peristeri. 30 hard kilometers to the proud Tzoumerka all accompanied by rain. We were looking in vain for a window into the weather for the standard snack from the company’s mom Katerina. Finally as soon as we arrived at the entrance of Syrrakos we took advantage of the stone gazebo for the snack before walking through the stone alleys of the village. Starting for the village of Kataracris and the forest village “Kedros” finally the rain stoped. Arriving, our two trainers and an adventure track were waiting for us!!! Divided into groups we passed by the spider, the gutter, the centipede, and the hula-hoop, timing our speed. At the end the leader of each team with his eyes closed and a passenger, was trying to quickly get his car through a maze! The evening found us in the restaurant of the Forest Village where those celebrating their name day and the crew with the most entries took their gifts from Explosivo. The sequel was in the bar with short stories by Christos Lambris about his trips to the mountains of the world and background music from Dimitris’ guitar.

_Tuesday, October 27, 2009

On the fourth day (game day!) we set off for plaka bridge and the Trekking base to get our rafting uniforms!!! Gun, helmet, kit and ready to battle the waves. The river did not leave us alone for 1:30 hours and everyone, especially the children with the hot dogs and monoraft, felt the low temperature of the water in their skin. In the middle of the descent an amazing landscape with waterfalls and pedestals was ideal for our stop. Coming out of the river, we all run to change since the smells from the barbeque that Kyriakos and Katerina were preparing had broken our noses. In the afternoon after our visit to The Waterfall above the homonymous village we were again divided into two groups, one of which set off for a night special for the Tzoumerka shelter and the other was engaged in a treasure hunt in the forest village area.

_Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The last day’s breakfast is always more relaxed, so after we had our breakfast and gathered some sun on the balcony of the restaurant we set off on the way back with a first stop for coffee in Kalarrites. From there we took the northern dirt road coming out, from an uncharted road, to the drakolimni of Vermika! Opportunity for jeep climbing and photographs! The last dirt part of the route will end after about 15 km in the village of Haliki. Another 30 kilometers of asphalt road for Metsovo and the kontosouvly, the ribs, the bean and the farewell of the crews!!!


The October 2009 event had the support of Salomon, Suzuki Papavramidis and TTC Tires Karavasilis.