Walk from Elos (Kambos) to Sfinari

Walk around Crete in 50 days – Day 34 from Elos (Kambos) to Sfinari

Elos to Sfinari, western Crete

Steps 37635
Burned calories 1413
Distance 29 km
Walking hours 05h15′
Pulse at arrival 76
Weather Very windy (strong north wind) Cold (average 12C) Cloudy all day with
sometimes a bit sunshine.

Woke up at 06.30 in a cold room (10,8C). Cold water, no heating, no breakfast..no coffee and Elos was still sleeping..Prepared myself, took some water from the Tiflos river, ate my energy bar and started walking at 07.30

I arrived at 08.00 at Louhi and only see and hear barrel dogs. It is still cold (7C) and windy. I am going westwards, the sky looks better there…

08.20 passing Pervolia, a village down in the valley. In the middle one very big, yellow painted house..At the end of the village a very nice renovated house with big swimming pool.

08.35 Village of Kefali (Grafiko Chorio) and the junction to Elafonissi / Chrissoskalitissa. I continue to the center of Kefali. Here are rooms for rent (with hot water – it is written). If had had known that….Some realy nice houses. The village looks touristic (taverna’s, rent rooms, one hotel!, souvenir shops etc..)

08.55 The village of Papadiana. Old. Suddenly an E4 sign..I am on the E4 track and did not know it..So far no indication… Overlooking a big, green valley I continue and arrive at 09.30 in Simandiriana. Here I count about 7 houses. Only one, I guess, is used as a summer house. New sign of E4 about 500m past the village.

09.45 There’s the West Coast !

It is 10.05 and I am in Amigdalokefali. No sign of life..Wind is very strong here, at a point of view and I was nearly pushed down by a strong “rafall”. Storm at sea, I think about 9 bft. Further down in the valley, one man, coming back from hunting, with six dogs..all free and barking. They, the man too, look well fed.

10.40 I am at Keramoti. Only a few older people..One woman looks behind her window at the “strange” walker..I smell the open fire. It is still cold (12C) and I wish I could sit inside.. How will it be in the winter here ? Brrr… The view, however, on the west coast is fantastic. Huge plain with only olive trees, just at the seaside. Got the wind behind me and walking down hill much better than in Keramoti, where I was litteraly fighting against and hanging in the wind..!

11.45 I am in Kambos now and take some rest in Taverna “sun set”, Stelios’ place, to drink my “elleniko sketto”. Debra (Cretan Journal) assures me again about my overnight in Sfinari. Koukla mou ! From ‘sun set’ I have a fab view at the valley of Kambos. Stelios offers me the coffee, and I offer him a raki. Yamas, filosmou. Kali deinamei ! He owns some rent rooms !! In the village there are about 16 rooms for rent ! And they did not know that in Elos ? Well, you can fool this one only once !

A German lady, living in Kambos, is cleaning the kitchen and preparing it for the season…Stelios smiles..He is a happy man ! I pay for the raki’s and walk on around 12.30. “Den eine makria”, It is not far to Sfinari, he says..Ta leme ! And have a good season ! Time for the tourists now…Kambos lives !

13.30 Fantastic view on the mountain side.. Nice terraces, with olive trees and grapevines.. It is a pitty that this nice area is also used to dump rubbish…

13.40 The asphalth road winds down now and I am a bit protected by the mountains. Terrible wind. A car lies down in the slope.. Missed the dangerous curve… Brake traces and rubber on the road…

14.10 Crossing a small gorge with fast streaming water. Again a sign with information about the area of INNAHORIOU. Very good info !

14.20 Nearly a drama… A car with 4 young men (no number plate) drove straight to me…I jumped away, but slipped down the hill… At the last moment I could grab an oleander tree and save myself from a 50m fall into the riverbed !! Mala…! Why ? Drugs, alcohol…? Never saw them back…

14.30 Ano Sfinari. I talk to Manolis, one of the five people living there. He saw this car too, but don’t know who they were.. Never seen before, he said.. He is working on his land and taking care of his herds.. In his small house, he must be a happy man.. Next to the house another E4 sign.. Manos thinks it is from the electricity company.. I explain him why it is there… His dog is free and playing with me.. That’s the way I want it to see everywhere ! Bye Manos, all the best !

15.00 arrival at Sfinari. People are shouting at me, but I have to call Patricia, Debra’s friend, for my overnight stay.. They keep shouting…. Don’t understand it. As they sit in front of a taverna, I think they want me to eat something.. Patricia tells me to wait…in the taverna where the shouting people are…. She told them before to look out for me and they did !

While waiting I chatted a bit with them and had a beer. Stella made some salad and potatoes (Patricia ordered this for me. While eating and looking outside, a big rock fell down the hill (on top of it were some roadworks) just next to a car.. Nobody seems to care. .Life goes on.. At the taverna they complain.. Tourists spend only little money and go for picknick on the beach.. .It’s a hard time…

16.20 We drive to Patricia’s house and I take my room.. Nice renovated house, completely my style.. I feel good. A hot shower is very welcome..I enjoy the open fire and the salmon with “chorta” which I get for dinner… A glass of excellent white wine and an interesting conversation, are the perfect ingredients, together with a small lemon liqeur (home made !), to pass a quiet night, knowing that Patricia arranged two more overnights for the next days!

Thanks, Pat, it was unforgettable in your lovely and cosy house !

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