Winter Ascent on Artemisio Mountain

Artemisio mountain is on the border between Arcadia and Argolis, in the Municipalities of Argos-Mycenae and Tripolis respectively. It forms part of the mountain range that connects the Argolic Gulf with the Corinthian, and as such, it borders with Lyrkeio mountain on the north and with Ktenia mountain on the south. On its west is the plateau of Mantineia. Its tallest peak is 1,771 metres in height.

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According to Pausanias, a sanctuary dedicated to goddess Artemis, patron of hunters and wild nature, used to sit on its peak. The Roman traveller mentions the sacred grove of Itamoi, a European Yew that is very toxic, and according to mythology, the goddess used it to poison her arrows; unfortunately, the grove has not survived. Today, very few fir trees survive. The river Inachos has its spring on the mountain, its mouth in the Argolic gulf, and is one of the few springs that can be used for those who decide to climb the mountain.

Hikers and climbers usually depart from Karya, on the east side of Artemisio. Two trails of different difficulty begin from there, one requiring special knowledge and equipment. In general, Artemisio’s trails are through the canyons and on its slopes, and are a popular destination for both mountain climbing and hiking; though hikers who don’t want to climb or don’t have the knowledge and equipment, should choose the easier trail from Karya. The trails are have good signals to aide the travellers.

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On our previous ascent, during summer time, Artemisio was a rather easy climb with only a couple of more difficult passages where one needs to scramble and climb small parts. Though, during winter time and especially when there is plenty of snow and ice, reaching the top of the mountain is much more challenging.

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First view of the Artemisio Peak
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Getting closer

Following the ridge, we had a small climbing part and a good view toward the Ktenias Mountain.

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Beautiful ridgeline that connects Mount Kreion (Ktenias) & Artemisio

Moving ahead we faced the most difficult part of the mountain, with exposed slopes, sharp rocks and cliffs.

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We are checking which route to take to the top of Artemisio
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Rock and Snow
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Moving carefully between Rock and Snow
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Clear view from the peak
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The exposed couloir of about 55 degrees
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Looking down
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Dangerous passage
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Mixed field climbing

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Couloir

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Climbing
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Steep Couloir
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Almost at the top
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Final few meters

 

Finally, after a lot of effort and the usage of the appropriate equipment, we have managed to reach the top. From there, we were able to see all surrounding mountains, we could see the city of Argos, Nafplio and even the island of Spetses.

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Artemisio Mountain peak
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View from the top
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Mount Kreion (Ktenias) to the left

The route we have followed once we have reached the base of the pyramid peak, was the following. One part was the ascent, the other the descent. Both routes quite exposed and dangerous.

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Descending from the top
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Route

 

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One thought on “Winter Ascent on Artemisio Mountain

  1. Pingback: Scrambling in Artemisio Mountain (Artemisio Arete) – Olympus Mountaineering

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