Friday 18 September 2015

Zagoria and Permet trek 17.9.15 - 20/9/15

Zagoria and Permet trek

17th September

Walking Permet and Zagoria
I had a night of spewing and pooing, something I ate, think it was the dolmass didn't agree with me. 
As my head was in the toilet bowl, I though for sure I wouldn't be in any shape to start the walk 4 day walk tomorrow morning, and Patrick would have to go without me and I'd stay in Permet.. However, after another few midnight runs to the toilet, I managed to sleep, and woke up in the morning feeling OK... not queasy, just a bit washed out and exhausted 
We met Cimi (pronounced Chimi) and Endrit at 7 am for breakfast, I had some mountain tea, bread and an egg, went down fine- thankfully. Then we got into Endrit's car to go to the Village of Peshtan, the starting point for our trek.
Scenery on the way to Peshtan
Endrit dropped us off at the starting point of the walk, Peshtan. Quite a steep, narrow road up the mountain side!
We set off to walk around 11 km today.

Some cool shady forest sections, saw a couple of little grey squirrels,  
A few steep sections, nothing too demanding.
Little flowers, I think cyclamens all through the Forrest areas
Meadows and grazing areas

About 10:40 walked through the village of Kala, where there  was once 10 houses, now only one, with a family of four. Beautiful spot, but very remote, no electricity...

View to the last inhabited farm at Kala from the other side of the ridge, they also have lots of bee hives.
We stopped for a morning tea break at a lovely creek at 10:45.
Crystal clear water over mossy rocks
Continued to walk along, met a goat herder and his goats, little springs appear regularly along the track, keeping the temperature bearable, it's about 33deg. Today, and forecast to be the same all week!

walked across the amazing ottoman bridge, built in the early 1800s by Ali Pahsa!

The walk today is part of an ancient caravan route connecting these remote Southern Albanian villages. We are only about 40 km from the Greece border here.

Then the last section of today's walk... 1.5 hours up, up, up a barren, bare exposed hot slope, the last hour was hell! So hot and exposed! About 40 deg. In the sun and with the heat reflecting off the rocks. I only just made it, think I got a little dehydrated ...Thankfully I didn't have my full back pack!
There were sections with the old paved road visible.
Nearly at the village of Limar, our destination for today!

Arriving at the village of Lima

We arrived at the house of Mani da mani, school teacher at Lima village. His mother and wife gave us lovel cool water! Heavenly to rest in the cool shady courtyard.
The outdoor summer kitchen, with smoke coming out of the chimney, they cook on an open fire and a wood cooker.

Grandma was so lovely and welcoming, let me check out her kitchen and gardens!

Margarite making byreck
Cooking the byreck - the coals are placed under, and on top of the cooking dish 

Gathering supplies for dinner from the hugely productive garden

Peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers, corn, fruit trees... Lovely . It's quite remote though, everyone needs to be fairly self sufficient as its  about 1 1/2 hours rough road drive to the nearest town Kelcyrie.
The church at Limar.

Figs drying in the sun
Mani's father is a shepherd, and up in the mountains with the sheep. grandma (69 yrs old) packs some supplies for him, jumps on the donkey and rides up to the mountains this evening , she'll stay up there with him overnight and bring milk back home tomorrow.

Delicious dinner! Soup, bread, peppers, lamb, cheese, fruits.. Everything grown and cooked locally, except the flour for the bread. Cimi, our guide sitting at the dinner table.

Good night!
We're both worn out from walking in the heat this afternoon!

Zbulo  ….
17.9.15 Thursday  Zagoria – Permet trek 4 days  
The Zagoria walk can be extended or shortened, the pure 4-day trek with a local guide costs 230 EUR per person 

4days guided trekking tour in Zagoria with local guide, 17- 20th September 2015 Itinerary:
1. Permet Limar: transfer to Peshtan, walking to Limar, overnight in a shared room of a guesthouse [//D]
2. Limar Hoshteve: walking to Hoshteve, overnight in a shared room of a guesthouse [B/LP/D]
3. Hoshteve Sheper: walking to Sheper, overnight in a shared room of a guesthouse [B/LP/D]
4. Sheper Permet: walking to Permet [B/LP/]

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