Ascent of Spathi on 2012-03-31

Climber: Rob Woodall

Others in Party:Andrew Tibbetts
Date:Saturday, March 31, 2012
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
    Elevation:7047 ft / 2147 m

Ascent Trip Report

We climbed Spathi (aka Dikti) the morning after our Afentis Stavromenos / Thriptis ascent. In April it is a steep snow climb - crampons essential (there are no such issues in summer).

Once on the Lassithi plateau we took the steep mountain road south out of Kaminaki then turned L (NE) onto a steep unpaved road (N35.147180, E25.465546), hoping to reach the trailhead at Limnakaro plateau (N35.14043 E25.48133, 1120m GPS). However the road was a little too rough for our hire car which had poor ground clearance, and we parked at a pull-in by a farm building at N35.14934 E25.46765, 1037m (GPS). From here it was a nice 30 minute hike to Limnakaro. We could probably have driven there from Avrakondes, as we noted a good quality concrete road coming from that direction. (See Petter Bjorstad's report - the turnoff appears to be at N35.161511, E25.486949). Bob Packard also went that way.

From Limnakaro we walk south on a rough unpaved road. This reaches a wide dry stony stream bed, and an obscure trail continues, firstly south along the stream bed then on its L (E) bank, with paint markings and signs indicating we are on the E-4, a long distance path. The trail climbs steeply then contours above the stream. When it climbs R towards the saddle we strike off L (SE) and crampon up a 40 degree slope on nice firm snow to gain the SW ridge of Dikti. From here the snowy 2140m Madara looks superb.

We head up the ridge to Dikti, with impressive drops to our L. Higher up it is a nice snow ridge, quite narrow with two steep sections, but never difficult, although once on the E side of the ridge the snow softens in the morning sun and we sink in a few times.

All we find at the summit is a square triangulation pillar (N35.11805 E25.49725, 2135m, horizontal accuracy 4m), buried in snow with only the top surface visible. We quickly head back down the ridge before the snow deteriorates further, stopping at the end of the ridge for food and drink before descending the steep snow slope, needing careful footwork high up, then the gradient eases and we quickly plunge-step the lower part.

Once back on the trail, we retrace our steps to the car. We took 3 hours up and 2 down, arriving back in time for a picnic lunch before driving to our next peak, Kofinas which we climb that afternoon. If making that journey, note that the obvious shortcut south west over the saddle needs a high clearance vehicle, which we did not have.

Dikti photo album
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:3677 ft / 1119 m
    Extra Gain:16 ft / 4 m
    Round-Trip Distance:9.4 mi / 15.2 km
    Route:from north
    Trailhead:Limnakaro plateau  3402 ft / 1036 m
    Quality:7 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Unmaintained Trail, Snow on Ground, Snow Climb
    Gear Used:
Ice Axe, Crampons
    Weather:Pleasant, Calm, Partly Cloudy
Ascent Statistics
    Time:3 Hours 
Descent Statistics
    Time:2 Hours 
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip

 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by Rob Woodall
Click Here for a Full Screen Map
Note: GPS Tracks may not be accurate, and may not show the best route. Do not follow this route blindly. Conditions change frequently. Use of a GPS unit in the outdoors, even with a pre-loaded track, is no substitute for experience and good judgment. accepts NO responsibility or liability from use of this data.

Download this GPS track as a GPX file

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