Lefka Ori ( White Mountains ), Amutsara-Tafkos Lagkonias Chasm-Rusies Mtn Pass-Pachnes 2453m-Gavala 2370m.
Route to the highest peak of Lefka Ori, Pachnes 2453m, second highest mountain in Crete Island. The mountain presents unique alpine landscapes that are often better described as alpine desert or lunar like. These landscapes are unique to the Greek Mountains, even to those situated in Crete Island.
The mountain comprises 58 peaks that are over 2000m.
( Το κείμενο είναι γραμμένο στην Αγλλική. Τυχόν περίεργες λέξεις ή φράσεις χωρίς νόημα, οφείλονται στην αυτόματη μετάφραση απο τα Αγγλικά στα Ελληνικά ).
Lefka Ori mountain ( White Mountains ) ( also known as Madares ( Μαδάρες ) in Crete ), is the second highest in Crete Island and 10th highest in Greece. The view from the highest peaks is spectacular, offering view to the Aegean Sea at the North and the South Cretan Sea at the same time.
E4 main route crosses Lefka Ori from the NW to SW and splits in two sections, one that reaches Anopolis Village and another that reaches Amoudari Village at Askyfou Plateau. This route matches- partially, the former.
This particular route's starting point is Ammoutsara, a plateau at 1840m elevation. A winding dirt road starting off at Anopolis village concludes at 2000m ( total distance 18 km ), near Rusies Mtn pass and passes by this plateau. Be aware that this is a difficult dirt road. It is not suitable for plain cars with little to middle ground clearance.
The route is well marked and presents no technical difficulties.
There is no fountain at any point on the route, make sure you carry all the water you will be needing.
The route could be summarized to the following sections:
01. Amoutsara Plateau 1840m-Rusies Mtn Pass 2140m.
The route covers 1.3 km on the dirt road and continues on marked trail. There are two entrances to the trail ( the route enters at the second and exits from the first ). It soon passes by a chasm opening ( Tafkos Lagkonias ) and continues it's ascent reaching again the dirt road just before it's highest point at 2000m. Covering some 20m on it ( we come across two trail entrances again ), it continues again it's ascent to Rusies Mtn Pass.
02. Rusies Mtn Pass 2140m - Pachnes 2453m.
The markings are less frequent but the trail is very clear and it's track does not deviate. Admiring the unique landscape of white Mountains, passing by several dolines and enjoying the contrast of the light brown ground to the blue sea at the background we reach Pachnes summit.
03. Optional deviation to Gavalas peak 2370m. The route descents back to the starting point following the same route. However at 2300m elevation an easy off trail ascent reaches Gavala peak at 2370m.
More information could be obtained through the text at the waypoints.
Total Distance 13.1 km.
Altitude Gain + 820m.
If you are up to the Crete's four highest mountains challenge, links to gps tracks can be found here:
1. Idi Mt 2456m https://www.wikiloc.com/hiking-trails/idi-mt-pseiloritis-lakkos-mygerou-5-highest-peaks-52326743
2. Lefka Ori 2453m
3. Dikti 2148m https://www.wikiloc.com/hiking-trails/dikti-mt-limnakaros-e4-spathi-2148m-19627509
4. Volakias 2116m
to be uploaded