Thursday, May 13, 2010

Mt. Erciyes

Mt. Erciyes is one of the dormant volcanoes responsible for Cappadoccia's unique formations. It helped lay the groundwork so to speak. It's a 3,900 meter mountain outside of Kayseri, and last weekend, Tim, Erin, and I played in its snow. In September, while climbing in the Aladaglar, or Crimson Mtns. in southern Turkey, we met Nuri and Agi, a Turkish climber married to a Bulgarian woman, and when they learned we were coming to Kayseri, they offered us their home Friday night, and then hiked up with us the next day, to show us the routes. This is the view of Erciyes from their apartment:

Nuri is the Team Leader of Kayseri's Search and Rescue team, AKUT. Ankara's AKUT holds the bouldering gym which we go to. We followed Nuri's cool Search and Rescue van to the mountain:

This is a canyon we'll return to for climbing:

Here's Tim and Erin suitin' up for the skin up. We planned to camp in the caldera that night, and wake up early to skin up to the ridge the next morning.

And here we are setting up camp in the caldera:

The sun setting, the temperature was a WINDY night!

The next morning: an accidental sleep-in plus encroaching bad weather = us skinning up to where we would (and will next time) skin up to the ridge, and then heading back down the mountain to avoid the bad weather. We ended up staying in a sucker hole the rest of the ski down; the storm just skirted around the mountain, but we'd played it safe. It was a sussin'-it-out-trip, anyway.

Oh my God, those were heavy packs to pull off tele-turns in!

There were enough rocky patches that we had to take our skis on and off a few times, and then finally attach them to our packs to hike back to the car. But not too shabby: skiing on May 9th in Central Anatolia!

Really cool alpine flowers! :)

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