Naoum – Kazania – Apostolidis Refuge
| Distance: 5,4 km | Elevation change : +1380/-40 m | Difficulty: 9/10
This route starts in Naoum. You can reach this place by car or bike from Petra using a dirt road (12 km). Three other options to get to the start of the route is to descend the Xerolaki Valley, starting near the Christakis refuge, or descend Kopsi Skolio [check here] or descending Kopsi Christakis. Last two options are extremely hard in combination with this route.
This route passes some of the most beautiful places of Olympus and has some tremendous views on the Dark Side of the Mountain of the Gods. The climb is technical and very demanding and crosses a vertical rope section (Alpine II/III) (30 meters).
The route has three parts. The first part follows the streambed of Naoum. This is one of the most beautiful places of Olympus. After the start through some impressive caved curves in the conglomerate rocks the route follows the stream, an amazing experience in a marble stone like white world of organic rock forms. The route finding can be challenging, there is no trail, the hiker/runner has to find the most logic passages to proceed.
At about one third of the route a trail climbs to the right, leaving the streambed, after some red signs painted on the rock. Finding this trail needs some skills, though with the gpx-track it’s perfect doable. This part is very steep and difficult in wet conditions.
At one point at about two thirds of the climb the route passes a shelter in the rocks. In a case of emergency this is a perfect place for a bivouac.
After the shelter the climb gets rocky again at some point. This part of the mountain is called Kazania. Follow the gpx file carefully to find the best way through a labyrinth of options. Yellow signs (not everywhere) indicate some passages, like the rope section that is not easy to find.
After this rope section the hardest part is done and Portes, the highest point of the route is close. From Portes the Apostolidis or Kakalos refuges can be reached in minutes.
Count 4 hours for those who are experienced in this terrain and 6 hours for less experienced.