Turkey - trekking in the Kaçkar Mountains - June/July 2014
Rita Mendes-Flohr > Turkey - trekking in the Kaçkar Mountains - June/July 2014
Eleven magical days of trekking in the Kaçkar Mountain range in northeastern Turkey, just south of the Black Sea near the border with Georgia and Armenia – in fact, it is an extension of the Caucasus. The highest summit is 3932 meters.

The south side, in the rain shadow, is relatively dry and it only rained for an hour in the six days we were trekking and camping on that side. It was early in the season (that begins only on June 21st) when the wild flowers are at their peak, while snow was still in the higher elevations – at over 3000 meters. The frozen alpine lakes, surrounded by snow-dotted mountains, were a delight to the eyes and the spirit.

The pass we crossed to ‘the other side’ was not difficult, despite the lingering snowfields, (which we were told will be gone two weeks later) which made it all the more beautiful. Then we entered into a green world of spruce and cedar forests and meadows with even more flowers (I counted over 100 different varieties), and hiked through yaylas, where herders move to in the summer to graze their animals, the mist always hanging over the trees, sometimes coming closer, sometimes opening up. In Ayder we spent four nights in comfortable little cabins, practically in the woods, above a rushing stream that sang us to sleep at night

The rustic and comfortable Kardelen hotel in Ayder belongs to our guide Nadir Demirci - the BEST GUIDE in the Kaçkar !!! – he gave us his heart and soul and an incredible experience.
www.ayderkardelen.com or nadirdemirci@hotmail.com