Horto – Metochi Circular Walk Sunday October 3rd 2010

                 Horto – Metochi  Circular Walk Sunday October 3rd.

The sun was “cracking the flags” when we met at the water fountain in Horto.

 Al and Lyn, who were leading the walk, did a quick count of those who required lunch at Martha’s later. As usual 30 was the magic number and most were eating after.

We crossed the road and set off along the left side of the canal. It’s a good area for wildlife; Gill spotted a Kingfisher within seconds of starting off. There are many fish, frogs and tadpoles, in season. In the past I’ve see a water snake and the valley is the home of Nightingales. After 300 yds or so we turned right at a small church and started the climb to Metochi which stands 190 metres above the Pagasitic Gulf.

Most of the walk is on agricultural roads which were quite dry, some areas are bare of earth and the stone is polished smooth, slippery when wet. Bryan found a Boletus mushroom, he showed it to Christian who peeled it and exposed the blue flesh then explained talked about its culinary uses.

John pointed out a natural stone watercourse, smooth stone over 1 metre wide, it tumbled down the hill into the valley below. On our return journey, 50 metres higher on the top road, we came across it again. We were too close to the hill to see how much farther it stretched upward. Maybe worth a detour next time we walk that route. We stopped briefly and Lyn handed round some very refreshing sliced apple. Some of the party left the main group at Doris’ suggestion and walked down to a waterfall which runs past Ulle’s house. This is a very beautiful and peaceful area.

The main group continued toward Metochi where Alan took us to an easily accessible area where the stream ran over flat rock, it was once used by local ladies to wash the laundry. I innocently asked for some of the ladies in the group to pose near the water for a photo. “Take off your shirt youngman” was the response from a lady, who shall remain anonymous. I was lost for words at this. I wasn’t sure if the request was in aid of medical research or to make the photo more authentic!

 We continued on to Metochi and caused a stir among the locals, 30 walkers in the village is a rare event and many of the locals called out and waved as we walked by.  The water fountain in Metochi was the next stop, here we freshened up. We returned to Horto on the top road, mostly downhill we eventually arrived at the main road close to the Little Theatre of Horto. Again a few of us diverted to walk toward Milina then turn down by Perigiali Taverna and walked back to Horto across the beach and over the stepping stones. The walk lasted 2 hrs 30 minutes with a few stops along the way.

We were all quite warm after the exertions of the day, though only Gill and Mervyn decided to swim. The rest of us cooled down with a drink or two!

Martha and her husband can always be relied on to produce a good meal and today was no exception.

                                Quote of the Day

“One of the things I like best about the Kalderimi walks is the Taverna meal afterward”!

Many thanks to Alan & Lyn who organised and led the walk.

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