14th November, 2019
- Day 5: Patara Green Park to Çavdır
- Distance: 18.3km
- Ascent / Descent: 140m / 40m
- Weather: heavy rain and thunderstorms
- Accommodation: Gazkesmez Margaz Cuısıne & Camping in Üzümlü, ₺150pp (including D&B)
- Total cost for one (Turkish Lira ₺): Letoon supermarket 13, tea in Çavdır 1, dinner, bed & breakfast 150 = ₺164 (~£21 / €25 / US$28)
I’m woken through the night with the loud sounds of thunder and the constant lighting is like trying to sleep with someone flashing a headlamp in my face. I feel around the edges of my tent and then breathe a sigh of relief. I’m so glad we’re on this covered platform.
We’re in absolutely no hurry as the storm only seems to increase with every waking hour.
The rain’s not easing up at all but as we have a long 13km stretch of road-walking past greenhouses and not a mountain trail, we decide to don our ponchos, make sure the contents of our packs are sealed in dry-bags and head out. My camera won’t see the light of day.
It’s a shame. We pass two UNESCO World Heritage Sites – Letoon and Xanthos, but the rain is so heavy we decide not to stop. Pausing just for a minute makes us both cold anyway, so it’s head down and plod on. Letoon and Xanthos will have to wait for another day.
After 18km, we reach Çavdır and find a cafe to warm up in. Draping our ponchos over the chairs and pulling on dry warm clothes, we slowly warm up. In trying to order a hot chocolate for Sarah, we end up with two coffees and two Turkish teas. Maybe hot chocolate isn’t a thing in this region? The tea hits the spot for me, both mine and Sarah’s 😉
It’s still raining and is forecast to continue through the night. We check google and find the closest accommodation is two towns away in Üzümlü. We have time to walk there but the problem is the next section includes a mountain path and ancient aqueduct. It’s not an ideal path to walk in the rain. I call the accommodation, explain where we are and they offer to come pick us up. They’ll also bring us back to this same spot tomorrow morning, provide dinner and breakfast and we can stay in a bungalow for the same price as camping. Yes please!
On arrival we’re treated like royalty and served hot coffee and Turkish delight (locum). The mother takes us over to the shower and stands outside while Sarah goes in first. It takes me a moment to realise what the mother is doing. Every time I hear Sarah scream, she flicks a switch. It’s the hot water! When it comes to my turn, Sarah takes over the roll of flicking the switch and I get about 5 seconds of hot water each time. It’s comical!
Dinner is the tastiest yet. Mushroom soup, chicken shish, rice, salad, bread, stuffed cabbage rolls and halva for dessert.
After dinner we’re invited for a drive to Kalkan. I’ve got nowhere else to be so I happily accept. (Sarah can track me on the ‘Findmy‘ app.) The drive to get there is a little scary. I’m sat in the front of an old Renault 12 TSW 1400, driven by a friend of the family. I’m not sure he’s driven it before. It’s dark, the road is windy and apparently driving within the lines is optional. We make it to Kalkan and walk to the small lighthouse by the harbour. Most of the boats are out of the water and it feels eerie walking between them. We get back in the car and continue along the winding cliff-side coastal road to a famous nearby beach called Kaputaş Plajı. Using my iPhone for light, we descend the long flight of steps to the sea. It’s a lovely spot, I’m sure it’s even more beautiful in the daytime.
I feel part of the family as we chat and laugh all the way back to the accommodation.
We’re using Komoot* for navigation and to record our own tracks. Prior to departing the UK we uploaded the GPX tracks to Komoot so we can now use them for navigation (with voice commands). We’re also using Komoot to record our own daily tracks which gives us the above maps, elevation profiles, distance, speed etc. You can find our collection of tracks on the Komoot App by searching ToughGirl for Sarah and followingthearrows for me. Or click the link in the caption on the above map to go straight to the track.
*Komoot premium was gifted and we also received sponsorship for this hike.
If you have any questions, leave me a comment and I’ll add a FAQ post at the end of the trip.