Ascent of Smólikas Óros on 2014-09-18

Climber: Rob Woodall

Others in Party:Andrew Tibbetts
----Only Party on Mountain
Date:Thursday, September 18, 2014
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Smólikas Óros
    Elevation:8652 ft / 2637 m

Ascent Trip Report

After our very wet morning ascent of Voras we drive southwest, arriving in good time to make an afternoon ascent of Smolikas. Following Petter Bjorstad's route, 1km West of Paleoselli we turn sharp R at N40.03916 E20.87834 and drive the unpaved road (fairly rough but OK in our Audi A4 with care), parking at N40.07072 E20.88913, 1669m just beyond the Refuge turning. If using Petter's directions, note that he may have zeroed his odometer at the start of the dirt road.

We hike the steep dirt road towards the refuge for a short way then before it bends R we turn L onto a wide trail. This soon joins the marked trail (which goes via the refuge) which we follow to the summit. At the first large stony clearing it is possible to lose the trail: it exits L. We cross a small subsidiary summit (N40.07653 E20.90449, 2096m P48m by GPS) with a fine view of Smolikas then descend to a saddle, climb through scattered pines then contour round a slope to reach Lake Drakolimni. Then after another col we climb Smolikas itself: first a rocky slope (note the trail splits at N40.08967 E20.91475 - the paintmarked trail keeps R and has firmer footing although L is perfectly ok). The trail then climbs grassy slopes L before rocky zigzags climb R to the summit, which is and outcrop N40.08901 E20.92516 by a trig pillar with a small antenna nearby. The trig has reference markers on three sides, a few metres back, each consisting of a bolt in concrete, with a painted cross mark in rock. The bolts each have a neat arrow pointing at the trig location.

We ascend in 1h47 and spend 30 mins at the summit in cloud, hoping it will clear. But apart from a brief Brocken Spectre and a few glimpses of the peak's rugged surroundings, views are limited. We jog down in 1h08 with several stops for photography: the evening light is superb. We follow the marked trail round to the refuge, a neat stone structure, then down to the car, arriving at 1925 with plenty of daylight left for the bumpy drive out to the paved road. The long serrated ridge of the Tymfi range across the deep valley is very impressive.

We drive out west to Konitsa for petrol and food then commence our drive east for tomorrow's target Olympus.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:3636 ft / 1108 m
    Extra Gain:230 ft / 70 m
    Round-Trip Distance:7.6 mi / 12.2 km
    Trailhead:5476 ft / 1669 m
    Grade/Class:YDS 1
    Quality:7 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail
    Weather:Pleasant, Calm, Partly Cloudy
Ascent Statistics
    Time:1 Hours 47 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Time:1 Hours 8 Minutes
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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