Hiking Mt.Olympus II: From Refuge A to Skala Peak

Compared to the first section of climbing, our way upward from 2100 meters proved to be much more difficult than I ever thought it would be. The road continued to serpentine uphill in a much steeper manner than it did before. My steps grew bigger as we ascended and didn’t even notice how the surroundings changed from pine trees to big rocks with only a few flowers hanging on to the cliffs.

the European 4 road

the European 4 road

when the place was still green

when the place was still green

cliffs rising through the pines

cliffs rising through the pines (see the tiny bit of snow on the left?)

vegetation started to disappear..

vegetation started to disappear..

..giving way to the mighty cliffs

..giving way to the mighty cliffs

the path became harder as the slope became steeper

the path became harder as the slope became steeper

and we just had to stop to take it all in

and we just had to stop to take it all in

At about 2500 meters high there was a bench where our climbing partners were waiting for us (they were faster but waited for us so we could climb the last few hundred meters together). Also here was a big map of the peaks, and a lot of backpacks that were left behind by other climbers. We didn’t know where we would make our descend, so we carried our bags with us instead. From here on there was only one 300-meter segment to the first peak, Skala. I have to admit that this was the hardest climb of my life, because the place was sooo steep, I could only go 5-7 steps in one pace and had to stop every once in a while to catch my breath. But I didn’t give up. it didn’t matter that I was the last of our team and that I went by my own snail-slow pace, I still made it to the top!

"rock"flower 1

“rock”flower 1

"rock"flower 2

“rock”flower 2

the hardest part

the hardest part

the road was hard, but he made it easier :)

the road was hard, but he made it easier ūüôā

and the view looking back was so wonderful..

and the view looking back was so wonderful..

...I just had to sit down and breathe it in for a while

…I just had to sit down and breathe it in for a while

and before we know it, we were at Skala Peak (2866 m)

and before we knew it, we were at Skala Peak (2866 m)

On the last photo you can see Mytikas Peak (2918 m) behind us, the highest point of Greece! And I have to tell you that we reached Mytikas too on that wonderful day! So stay tuned for the last part of our Olympus-adventure!

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