Monday, September 21, 2015

Üzümlü - Gelemiş

The Lycian Way day 8.
Distance: 21.7km (127.8km), time spent: 6:46 (52:09).
Altitude (start / end / highest): 306m / 15m / 426m.
Weather: Nice during the day, with clouds in the horizon, sultry in the afternoon and evening.

The merchant from Üzümlü keeps his word and drives me back up again in the morning. I find another advantage of going to Kalkan, since I will be returning here in two days, I can leave behind all the gear that I do not need on those two days. Slack-packing is what someone perhaps a little bit condescending calls it. I do not care much about that, for me it means that I can walk with a lighter backpack.

View towards Patara just after leaving Üzümlü.

The weather forecast for the afternoon is not good, but when I start to walk the sky is blue. Views towards that Patara beach in the west and Eren Tope to the south, which The Lycian Way goes around. I had hoped to see a tortoise or turtle while I was walking down here and just before I come to Akbel, a little fellow is suddenly appearing on the path. Terrific. I arrive at the junction in Akbel, which I will strike a good acquaintance with.

I encountered this funny little fellow just before arriving at Akbel, first time I have seen a tortoise (not in captivity).

From here, I follow the instructions in the guidebook, since the waymarks as usual disappears when you come to a place. In the book, I read that I shall walk west with the mosque on the left, so I do that and follows a road a long way down. After a while, alarm clocks begin ringing in my head and when I come to a cemetery, they are unbearable. By looking at the map, I can ascertain that I am outside Yesilköy and has left the trail long ago. Walking up again is not written on my wish list, so I make use of my thumb and get a hitch back up again with the first car passing by.

The wall of Delikkemer, which is about 500 metres long has almost stood rock solid since it was built for over 2000 years ago. The trail goes through the hole in the wall.

Back at the junction in Akbel, quite frustrated, I find out that I shall walk west with the mosque on the left, but walk to the left on a road before the mosque. I do not get less frustrated by that. The waymarks appears again. I walk off the frustration and when the trail crosses a road and enters a nice path, I am in a good mood again. Perhaps my frustration has caused the accumulation of clouds that now lies over the mountains behind me.

Delikkemer with the sealed siphonic pipe of rock on top of the wall.

Below Inçebel Tepe, The Lycian Way meanders around the hill and the Patara beach, which is taking a long time to be done with, reappears in the line of sight. From the valley below, the calls for prayer from the minarets begins to waft up towards me and it is such an extraordinary moment that I just have to stop and listen. The calls for prayer are like an a capella. First, one muezzin sings an adhan, then the next muezzin takes up the song and so it continues from minaret to minaret in the valley below. I can hear the song moving. I am in no way religious of me, but this is undeniably amazing, too bad you cannot take a picture of sounds.

A peaceful place for lunch between the olive tree groves next to Delikkemer, with views to the sea.

Yesterday the joy was great when I came to the small Roman bridge; today the joy is just as big when I come to Delikkemer. At first sight, it looks just like the usual old wall you have seen several of before, but this wall is a 2000 years old engineering piece of art. On the up to 12 metres tall wall, there is a sealed pipe of rock that works as a water siphoning system. The pipe is built up by sculpted stone blocks that each weighs about 800kg and around 1000 of them are used to cover the 500 metres that is required.

On the path below Eren Tepe with views back towards Üzümlü and the mountains behind, where the clouds now are spreading over the landscape. Delikkemer to the right in the picture.

The wall goes through a grove with olive trees and there lies a peaceful ambience over the place, so I find myself a place for lunch below it with views towards the sea. Quite possibly I sit and look towards where the trail will be returning towards Kalkan after going around the Yalı Burun promontory.

It is still nice weather after Delikkemer, but there are more and more clouds on the sky. The scenery is less exciting on the last part of the trail to Gelemiş. Nature and vegetation are in the process of occupying a medieval tower, beekeepers works in the middle of a swarm of bees, a big black snake slithers away from me on a forest track. The ocean is getting closer.

The ruins of a tomb just before Gelemiş, notice how precarious the stone block at the top is positioned.

Christina and Laura had recommended me to stay in the Flower Pension in Gelemiş and the path goes almost straight to the door, the recommendation seems solid. There is however no shortage of places to stay and restaurants here, I wonder how it must be during peak season here. A restaurant has a terrace with a sail on it and where the railings are formed like the railings of a ship.

Flower Pension in Gelemiş, the guesthouse I am staying at here.

Below Gelemiş lies Patara, both the beach and ruins. It is a little bit of a walk down there and on the way down the clouds on the sky are now starting to assume a dramatic colour. The ruins are impressive and are spread out over a large area. I see that I anyway will not have time to see everything there is to see there, so I pick out a few targets. Additionally, I want to get a swim in the pool at the guesthouse before it gets dark. And dim roars are resonating from the depths of the ocean.

Dramatic clouds drifts in from the sea over the wetlands and ruins in Patara.

I had hoped to get a good picture of the gate with three arches, but it is under maintenance and is covered by scaffolds. Of the remaining buildings, it is the reconstructed government hall that I find most impressive. I walk through what was the main street in Patara; it is hard to imagine how it must have been walking here in that time. Of the lighthouse, there is not much left standing, only a small foundation and something that looks like a finger pointing to the sky.

Dusk has arrived when I get my desired swim in the pool. I expect it to start raining and the first thunderclaps echoing over the sky all the time, but it stays quiet throughout the evening. The guests at the table next to me eats something that looks really delicious, so I play the copycat and order the same dish, lamb shish. The dinner tastes excellent. The day was almost excellent as well, tomorrow it is supposed to rain and when it rains, it usually includes some electrical activity.

From the ruins of Patara and what was the main street in the city.

<- ÜzümlüKalkan ->

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