SOTA 5B/CY-048: Korfi

The summit, with Limassol to the south in the background.

This is as high as you can go with SOTA peaks in Cyprus, not due to altitude, but just because there are forty-eight peaks here and this is number forty-eight. It is only 382 meters in height and worth a single point, but it is a short ride from Limassol, and once you know how to approach it, getting there is not very complicated.

Coming down from Nicosia, my initial thought was to approach the peak from the north. I had just activated 5B/CY-017, so I followed a winding series of roads through the mountains and finally into the valley running along the west of the Germosogeia river. I crossed the dam across that river and explored the roads to the north of the peak, towards the town of Finikaria. As I drove around one thing became apparent: the peak is on the south side of an escarpment. There are some dirt that wind up the north and west faces, but they are very steep. While it looks like there may be roads that lead towards the trail to the east of the peak, I could not find any that looked viable.

Overhead view for orientation.

Instead, I decided to check out the approach from the south side, and that did the trick (red path on the map below). On GoogleMaps, I found a road that extends northward from a site marked “Home Sweet Alabama”, which I presume is a B&B. Just west of that, there is the start of a wide dirt trail that heads directly northward. It was in generally good condition, but being rainy season, heavily rutted in places and muddy to require an off-road capability to drive up. There are a couple minor trails off, but continue to the top, where there is a fenced area and a building. Opposite that building, there is a trail that curves up the hill (as seen on the aerial photo).

GPS can navigate to the town at bottom right. From there, follow the dirt road marked in red up to a fence-enclosed area with some utility buildings at the top of the trail. A rougher road continues up and west (dotted yellow).

On the hill just beyond the fenced in enclosure, I came across a hillside full of sheep and possibly local goats. At least a few of them were wearing bells. Leading the flock was an honest to goodness shepherd. I was far enough away that I could not see much detail, but he was definitely carrying some kind of a pole. If you zoom in on the photo below, you can at least make out the animals.

Looking eastward from my parking spot. Sheep dot the hill from center to right side of the photo.

I pulled in next to a tree to the side of the fenced enclosure and started up the trail on the opposite site of the road.

I drove a little past the parking spot to get this photo. The enclosed area is shown to the left. That large tree at the end of the road is where I parked.

It had taken a while to get around to that side of the summit, so the sun was just above the ridge when I started up.

This is near the bottom of the rougher trail leading to the summit. A climbing pole would be nice here.

This trail was at one time a road, but it is deeply furrowed and steep, so the best way up is on foot. There is plenty of evidence along the way that this is just what sheep have been doing for some time (so watch where you step).

Looking back down the road from near where it empties out into a grassy field. The top of the trail is in better condition than the bottom.

The top of the hill is relatively flat and grassy, with just a gentle slope upwards towards the west. The city of Limassol can be seen to the south. There are remnants of stone walls up there, which at first I thought might be a building foundation, but considering how extensive they are, may well be remnants of terraced farming. There is just a hint of a foot trail along the east side of the plateau and I alternated following it where it was visible, or just walking across the grass. Eventually, I got to what I considered to be the peak. It is so flat up there that I backtracked a bit to a more open area where I could guy the antenna mast. There are no trees up there to speak of, just bushes.

The view northward.

Propagation seemed reasonably good on 20 meters, and I even plugged in the microphone for a couple voice QSOs. The noise level was minimal, except for the baying of hunting dogs in the distance, which was not much of a bother, although it probably put the sheep on edge.

This is as close as it gets to a trig point atop this summit.

So, I would recommend this peak, particularly as a day trip from Limassol. Without a suitable car, it would be possible to walk the entire thing from the town, but it would be a day-long trek. The trail is barren with no shade along the way, so I would recommend bringing ample water and avoiding the hot summer months.

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