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Gingilos the boot killer

Updated: Apr 14



I wonder, is it possible to fall in love with a mountain? I guess it is, judging not only by the people walking up to the summit of Gingilos every year but from the feelings i am having everytime i step on that breathtaking spot either as a guide or just for some soul searching. Although Lefka Ori massif has more than 50 summits over 2000 meters of altitude,on top of Gingilos there is a special vibe in the air. Maybe has something to do with the myths and stories of that peak. Zeus, you know the bearded greek with the thunder on his hand, had one of his many thrones here in Gigilos and i dont blame him, the view from the coll is out of this world, within the centuries Zeus gave his throne to the fairies, stories of ghost and goblins, that was a usuall explanation for people to understand the unknown. But even in the modern history of the island Gingilos palyed its role aswell, its steep slopes and passes were used by the resistance during the second world war.



Even that the summit is hardly 2000m and it is seperated from the rest of the massif by the gorge of Samaria its an experience that had gain many fans by the years.

The ascent takes about three hours up to the top and its mixed terain on the way to the summit doesnt let you feel bored at any moment, especially in Spring when the snow patches remain and keeps you alert until the end. Half way you will have the chance to taste the rare "gold" of Lefka Ori the waterspring of Linoseli is running almost all year long waiting to cool you off before the last ascent to the coll. After the coll comes the fun since a litlle scrambling is envolved in order to step on the top.


From the top you will be able to view almost the rest of the massif and almost a panoramic view of the whole north weast and east coast of the island, dont forget to write on the summit book wich is placed at the bottom of the iron pole on the second summit. The name of the summit means rotten, full of holes and that is true the limestone and dolomite of Gigilos hides a big number of caves and crevasses, accesible only by single rope technics so if you spot one it wouldnt be a good idea to get very close to it, since many of them get 150 meters deep like the one close to the coll so stay on the main trail which is... hole free.

Time to go down, only a couple of hours seperates you from a nice cold beer, have it you have earned it. Even though that Gigilos can be done in a single day we strongly suggest to stay overnight in Omalos in order to do more hikes since the area has many options.



In case you may wonder about the title of the article its quite simple actually, even that Gigilos trail is very good judging from the ones on the core of the mountains remains rocky and hard on your shoes so a good trekking boot is advised and if it breaks dont feel bad its the way Gigilos wanted it.


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© 2014 Photography & Writing Christoforos Baladimas

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