Atalanti North, a section of the 14km circular Atalanti trail, was the Cyprus Strollers’ choice for October 15. Over 40 Strollers (and two dogs) gathered at Troodos square and walked anti-clockwise just under 5km and back, for 9.5km worth of Troodos mountain rambling.
The route was a formula for stroller satisfaction – not too long, but not too short, not too steep and not too flat. But make no mistake: while it could be labeled as a one-size-fits-all trail, Atalanti North is far from monotonous. Gentle ups and downs took us through shady forest patches, as well as under the open skies or along sun-dappled paths, some smooth and wide, others bumpy and narrow.
This is a terrain that tells many silent stories. Moss covered tree trunks give evidence of the clean air. Hanging branches report the snowfall of many winters. Rock formations that burst out of nowhere are the stuff of geologists’ dreams. But you need absolutely no science to delight in the carpets of pine cones, the colours of wild apple trees and the therapeutic views to the summit of Olympus or the valleys below. And if it were possible to look into the Strollers’ minds, chances are, many were flirting with plans to complete the longer, but equally smooth and satisfying full Atalanti circle.
The 2nd walk of the 7th season followed a favourite route through the timeless pine forest of Troodos, with views of mountain villages waiting to be identified.
Over 40 Strollers across generations, from elementary school children to the age-is-just-a-number category, started off in Prodromos, in front of the summer camp area.
Going uphill, downhill, repeat, and back, this was the kind of trail that engages all the senses and stimulates an appetite for more. In fact, looking back, it is surprising how easily we covered a distance of just under 12km along a route rated difficulty level 2+ (on a scale of 1 to 3), based on its length and the slope, which at two points was not negligible. The secret? Good company, good mood, perfect weather and effortless interaction (plus regular mini-breaks) among Strollers from different parts of the world, from China to India to Iceland and many countries in between.
The new Oct – Dec 2017 season set off on Sunday 1 October, with lots of excitement, emotion and variety. The excursion to Troodos was the most demanding ever undertaken by the club, and required attention and discipline to the published organizational rules; and that proved a challenge. The group of participants was large and goodwilling, it included several newcomers, and we quickly succeeded to overcome the obstacles and execute the outing to a high degree of satisfaction. A witty joke, shared with all at the hike start, helped. Compliments to Koula, Teresa, Christine and Nicos for the photos. Join us on 7 Oct. at Prodromos https://cyprus-strollers.org/activities-description/prodromos-zoumi-stavroulia-walk-7-oct/.
Hello and welcome back, after your summer break. The Cyprus Strollers are ready to kick-off their 7th season of operation. Please visit the Activities Schedule section on http://cyprus-strollers.org, to view, download and study the program of weekly hiking activities for October, November and December 2017. For any activity that catches your attention, please visit the Activities Description section on http://cyprus-strollers.org to view, download and read a complete set of instructions.
Lots of new and exciting things are happening, and here are a few highlights:
There are 12 excursions scheduled
of these, 5 are either entirely new or hikes containing new aspects
There are 7 different Walk Leaders, who are responsible for leading the Cyprus Strollers on these 12 activities; this represents a great accomplishment, and is a clear sign of the true hiking spirit, a spirit of togetherness, sharing and giving
please join me in applauding Ian, Laurent, Yiannis, Christos, Stella with Teddy, and Patrick, the Walk Leaders for October – December 2017, alongside Xenophon
We are offering two linear trails where we shall not walk back to the starting point, because it would make hiking too long and arduous; inadvertently, this calls for special driving arrangements and registering in advance; please study the instructions very carefully and abide by them, respecting the organizers’ efforts and other participants
We start at high altitudes in October, in anticipation of warmer weather, and move to lower altitudes in December, when cold and rain are more likely
We set off driving from Nicosia at 9:45, but the first four excursions in October have an earlier start.
Furthermore, some things remain unchanged, and characterize the Cyprus Strollers as a unique hiking club; among them:
Commitment to first-class planning and organization
Excursions alternate between Saturdays and Sundays, thus appealing to more people
Dedicated website, fully informed, well in advance, in English
Our caring, multinational character; we are open to Strollers of any nationality, both permanent residents, as well as visitors to the island
Shared passion for hiking and enjoying the Cyprus countryside, in pleasant company
Well-chosen tavernas, serving us very good value meals at reasonable prices, because we honour them with our loyalty.
The Cyprus Strollers are committed to “Hiking made Pleasant”, our slogan. Please help us to carry on delivering on this promise, with your valuable contribution.
Thank you and enjoy the many walks in store. Xenophon
At the doorstep of our 7th Season of Activities, commencing 1st October 2017, the Cyprus Strollers take a look at the 6 memorable Seasons past, and cheerfully declare our performance in numbers:
902 kilometres walked
293 hours of hiking
We take the opportunity to extend our thanks to all Strollers who have contributed to this accomplishment. Come back to this website on September 4, to read and download the Activities Schedule for October – December 2017, and discover Hiking made Pleasant and the many thrills it brings.
If you are inspired to add a comment to this message, please write your comment here, for all to read.
The following poem is contributed by Christos, a regular Stroller. It is titled “Wisdom of the Mountains”. The photo was taken by Christos, one morning on Madari, as the moon was setting, earlier this month. Have you got a contribution to make?
There are no words when reaching the top.
There are no words while climbing towards your goal.
There are no words when you stop, turn your body, focusing, looking and experiencing a glorious sunset.
There are no words when you are hungry and eat a simple bread.
There are no words when you are thirsty and drinking the humble water.
There are no words when hugging your fellow traveller.
There are no words when changing clothes after sweating.
There are no words when you are lost and you have to decide, you then have to trust your instinct. It is the only thing you’ve got.
Even the steepest side becomes easy when we create a zigzag path.
Believe that the top is the only purpose and you then miss the journey. The real purpose of climbing is just to climb.
Believe that the journey is the only purpose and you then miss the top. The real purpose of climbing is to reach the top.
There are endless routes to the Top. Our route is only one of them, not “The One”.
Mountain is not good or bad, tall or short, green or brown. Like life they are what they are. New, every second.
There are no words, when feeling the mountain.
There are no words, when walking in the mountain.
There are no words……
The excursion of Sunday 28 May at Almyrolivado, on Troodos mountain, marked the finale of the Jan-May 2017 season. The mood was joyful throughout the two hikes and the picnic that followed. The highlight of the day came at the end, when Christina presented a cake made for the occasion, to sweeten our teeth and seal the fond memories. All participants exchanged wishes for the summer period, and expressed the desire to meet up over the summer. The club also welcomed new members, and said goodbye to Kate, who returns to her teaching job in the USA. Compliments to Christina for the cake and to Koula for the photos.