The second week we rented a car, which gave us a lot more freedom to travel farther afield. We drove to Hora Sfakion on the south coast. From the road through the White Mountains we could look down on the Imbros Gorge. On another day we hiked the Imbros Gorge (we were too early in the season to hike the Samaria Gorge; the danger of sudden floods is too high), then drove along the south coast eastwards to Frangokastello and on to Moni Preveli before turning northward for "home".
|Looking down on the Imbros Gorge from the road to Hora Sfakion. This photo is looking north towards the head of the gorge.|
Imbros Gorge from above. The flowers in the foreground are yellow asphodel (Asphodeline lutea).
|The path through the gorge is obviously the riverbed. We checked the weather very carefully before starting out. A sudden downpour in the mountains can quickly change a dry riverbed into a raging torrent.|
Evidence of past floods in the gorge - this dead tree looked like a giant antler.
The gorge is getting deeper - the walls are at least 20 metres high.
|There is a surprising number of trees and plants growing in the gorge. Many are quite rare species that have adapted to the very special habitat in the gorge.|
|The gorge is getting narrow...|
|...and narrowest. I could touch both walls with outstretched arms. One wouldn't want to be caught here in a flash flood!|
|Bill emerging from the narrows into the sunshine. Not a rain cloud in sight.|
|The walls are closing in again.|
|The gorge is getting very narrow again.|
|Not much sunshine down here. Bill is trying to estimate how high the walls around him are.|
|Nearly at the end. Here the path is roughly paved with stones. The Imbros Gorge used to be the main way to Hora Sfakion on the south coast before the road over the mountains was built. Back then donkeys were the main mode of transport.|
|A final surprise before we reach the sea. Here the river has cut an archway
through the stone. The man standing at the left side of the arch gives you
an idea of the size.
We drove the car to the village at the end of the gorge and took a taxi back to the top, so we didn't have to hike back up the gorge.
From Imbros village to the sea is about 8 km, is downhill all the way and took us just over 2 hours.
We then drove eastwards along the south coast to Frangokastello.
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November 19, 2013
©copyright 1998, 2004 Vicki Sherwood
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