Skiing in Antalya again

It’s hard for me to get motivated to go skiing in Antalya.  It’s a long drive, and the snow is usually not very good.  This year, however, I got out twice.  The first time Seb convinced me to go to Saklıkent, the closest ski resort to Antalya.  I’d been up to Saklıkent on my bike, but I’d never been there in the winter.  I’m not too keen on ski resorts, but it’ll be a powder day, Seb insisted, and I figured it’s good for me to get out and see something new every once in a while.

Top of the lift at Saklıkent.  You can see the observatory on Bakırlı Dağ in the top right of the photo. by bryandkeith on flickr
Continue reading

Posted in Skiing, Turkey | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

A walk up Dedegöl Dağı in the winter

This was my first trip to Dedegöl Dağı.  It’s in a slightly remote area of Isparta between Aksu and Yenişarbademli, between the big lakes of Beyşehir and Eğirdir.  Özgür had been to Dedegöl before in the summer (or spring?) to make a film to support the opposition to a marble quarry in the area.  It appears for now that that effort was successful.  Dedegöl Dağı has been added to Yazılı Canyon National Park, and no one is currently moving forward with mining plans.

I’ve had a bicycle tour planned in this area, and I’ve also wanted to come here for climbing in the summer.  Climbers come to Dedegöl Dağı for trad climbing on the south (??) side of the massif.  It’s a relatively undeveloped area with good scenery.  I’d definitely like to come back.

The drive from Antalya is long (over three hours), partly because once you leave the main Antalya-Isparta highway, there’s quite a distance on a curvy narrow road to cross the mountains to Kovada Gölü.  As I know from cycling here, this part of Isparta is very hilly.  Özgür and I stopped for a filling lunch in Aksu and then climbed (by car) to about 1800m, happy that there wasn’t too much snow on the road.

Here we’re almost to the parking area:

IMG_20190119_132942 by bryandkeith on flickr

We walked in about 3km that afternoon and ended up putting the tents near the top of the forested knob in the center of this photo:
Continue reading

Posted in Climbing, Turkey | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Lyrboton Kome: Perge’s olive oil source

Since I’ve been on a Roman ruin roll recently, I’ll share some photos of what must be the closest ruined Roman city to Antalya.  Lyrboton Kome is right on the northern edge of the city, just north of Varsak.  Anything closer to Antalya has, well, been swallowed up by the city.  The terminus of Antalya’s newest light rail line is only about 1km from Lyrboton Kome.

Kepez Belediyesi, the local municipal government, is making Lyrboton Kome into an “archaeology park”.  I don’t really know what that’s supposed to mean, but it ought to at least be enough protection to keep Antalya’s urbanization at bay.

IMG_20181205_153524 by bryandkeith on flickr
Continue reading

Posted in Traveling, Turkey | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Roman ruins bicycle touring, Priene to İzmir

Just like my previous week of bicycle touring, this final week of my three-week Fethiye to İzmir trip was hopping from one set of Roman ruins to another.  In addition to Roman sites I also managed to find a few old churches.  For me the most notable difference of this week was that the rain stopped.  I entered a stretch of brilliant weather — dry and cool, at times cold — and tried to take advantage of the sunshine.

My first stop was Priene, just down the road from Miletus.  Priene was built on small hills above the sea.  The “acropolis” of the city is actually way up on top of the mountain in this photo, but I didn’t bother walking up there.

IMG_20181220_103716 by bryandkeith on flickr

After years of sedimentation, now Priene overlooks agriculture land in the flat Büyük Menderes floodplain.  Only later did I learn that Priene is famous for its square bouleuterion.  I noticed it on the map while I was there and looked around for it a bit.  I thought I was right on top of it and decided it hadn’t been excavated or wasn’t around anymore or something, but there are heaps of photos of Priene’s bouleuterion on the internet.  How’d I miss it??!!

Well, at least I managed to find the theater and the few remaining columns of the Sanctuary of Athena.
Continue reading

Posted in Bicycle touring, Turkey | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Roman ruins bicycle touring, Milas to Miletus

On the first week of this bicycle tour I went through Bodrum, anciently known as Halicarnassus, famous for the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.  The mausoleum was destroyed over 600 years ago by earthquakes so it wasn’t a big disappointment to find that there’s really not much left at the site — some stones and a small, somewhat neglected museum.

Two days after visiting Bodrum I arrived in Milas, where I spent a couple nights resting and trying to stay out of the rain.  I was excited to visit Gümüşkesen, a Roman-era small copy of the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus.  I had also heard good things about Milas’ archeology museum.  It ought to be good, located in the center of an area densely dotted with ancient sites.  Sadly, I was disappointed twice: both the museum and Gümüşkesen were closed because they’re moving the museum to a currently under-construction building at the Gümüşkesen site.  I snuck my camera through the fence to get this photo:

They're building the new museum here next to this monument. by bryandkeith on flickr

On my cold, rainy “rest day” in Milas, I hitchhiked up to the ruined Roman city of Labranda.  On the map it looks like it could make a nice bike ride, but I’d been warned of heavy, heavy truck traffic on this road for the feldspar mining.  Warning: if you’re on a bike, don’t think you can use the parallel road farther east to avoid the traffic — many trucks go up the Labranda road and down the other road back to Milas.  The only reasonable bicycle option would be to come from Karpuzlu and head down the road via Labranda.  You’d still have heavy truck traffic, but it’d be mostly downhill, and the distances aren’t so long.  However, the site really isn’t so interesting.  There are many better ruins around.
Continue reading

Posted in Bicycle touring, Turkey | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment