When heading north on the main highway from Antalya to Isparta (to go to Kapıkaya or Dedegöl, for example), there are lots of stunning cliffs, mountains, and ridges visible on the right (east) side of the road. I’ve been on this road many times by car or bus, but I’ve never cycled it (and don’t want to — lots of traffic) so I don’t have photos of these cliffs, mountains, and ridges. You’ll just have to take my word for it.
Bülent sent this map:
in a WhatsApp message to Semra and me and said we ought to try “Karadağ T.” which you can see in the middle right of the map. Sure, we said, why not? Note that osm has something called “Karadağ” about 4km south of our goal, Karadağ Tepesi. Also note that there are many Karadağ Tepesi in Turkey. Here we’re talking about the one near Kargı (Bucak, Burdur).
We left Antalya by car in the dark, stopped for soup along the way, crossed the southern end of the southern of the two large Karacaören reservoirs, and parked at the base of the mountains with this view:
The easiest route looked to be to head straight for the reddish lightly treed area in the center of the photo, avoiding cliffs lower down on the left. Then we’d kind of follow the sometimes discontinuous thin line of trees heading up and right from there to get to the forested area below what looks like the low point on the ridge. Just like a week earlier I was pleased with how well were able to follow that plan once we were actually on the mountain.
We managed to avoid needing to climb directly up steep cliffs like this:
but did have some steep unroped sections like this:
We did bring a rope and some trad gear with us and did use the equipment for two short rather steep sections. Both were a bit scary because of the poor quality of the rock. What we’ve got here is conglomerate which was sometimes concrete solid while in other areas I could pull off hold after hold with my hands. Not confidence inspiring.
Here was our first short break not long after finishing the roped climbing:
The views weren’t terribly different there from what we saw at the summit less than an hour later:
The biggest surprise at the summit was that there was a road just below us on the east side of the ridge. We thought we’d have to rappel our route to get back to the car. Instead we walked about 20 minutes down to the road and took that casually around the north side of the mountain down to the reservoir and back to the car.
For the three hours we walked on the road the only traffic was a few goats. It ended up being a fun eight and a half hour day.