Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Corycian Cave Hike

Inside the Corycian Cave
This was our last full day in Delphi and in Greece. The weather turned out to cooperate: sun and little wind. On this day we decided to hike to the Corycian Cave. We hiked out of Delphi town to the cave and back. The stats: 6.5 hours roundtrip (9:10am to 3:30pm). We measured about 28km. There was snow, but nothing that impeded our way. Some halfway decent hiking shoes were all that was needed.
Delphi Tourist Map
To start the hike (that is picking up the E4 long distance path) we used the point near the stadium. There seems to be at least two starting points. See map image. And, the first bit of climb is some of the worse as you quickly climb out of town. (Later, the final scramble up to the cave is also tiring.) Once you get up out of the city and finish climbing what is called the “Evil Staircase” (kaka skala) you are still above the town, just high above it. This is the last view of the town as you head away from the town (north?).The walking gets a little easier and the trail is well marked. Eventually you come to some pasture lands. A huge stone trough is the main marker. At this point you stop taking the E4 and follow the road. There will be a couple of (summer) homes and you basically follow a dirt/sometimes paved road for a while (mostly down). Note that there is a point where another road joins the road you are on. Do not take that road. Just continue down the road you are on. Eventually you come to a meadow which on its edge has a picnic area and monastery, with a place to fill up with water. Just 5 minutes more down the road and on the left is a sign which indicates the scramble up the mountain to the cave.

We spent about 45 minutes exploring the cave. There is a rope that allows access up into some dark back part of the cave. We tried it but decided it was too slippery and we didn’t have the right equipment. Bring a flashlight.

The Rough Guide book we used pretty accurately described the hike so we just tore that page out of the book and carried it with us.
View Just Outside the Cave

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