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Athens Climbing Guide

 

Athens Climbing Guidebook (2014)

ISBN: 978-618-81119-0-5

Written by: A Chaziris, G Chaziris, A Markou

Published by: Vertical Planet Publications

Reviewed by: Karin Magog  (April 2015)

 

Athens Climbing Guidebook

The Athens Climbing Guidebook by
A Chaziris, G Chaziris and A Markou is the new guidebook to the wealth of rock climbing around the Greek city of Athens. The guide is written in excellent English and the authors enthusiasm for the area shines throughout. There are 33 crags in the guide, encompassing a range of grades and styles so plenty to go at whatever your grade. As well as steep, tufa routes on stunning looking orange limestone, there's immaculate looking grey limestone walls, pocketed walls and slabs, and interestingly various marble crags which offer both sports routes and some amazing looking trad crack lines. For a lot of the crags spring/autumn looks like the best season but there are also some definite summer and winter venues.

The guide is divided into nine areas with detailed sketch maps and the crags themselves have a detailed introduction which describes the general feel of the area and climbs, as well as a brief history and good assess notes. Several of the crags are accessible by public transport with details included. Clear photo-topos help to locate the routes as well as giving a good indication of what to expect from the crag. The written route descriptions are great and for me really sell the guide. It makes a nice change from just a route name and grade, to actually get an enthusiastic description of the route and some stars as well. Some examples include :- 'abundant roof climbing, small holds and dynamic moves will bring one of the hardest fights of the crag', 'offers sustained climbing on relatively good holds', 'appealing misery on technical slab, small crimps and smaller footholds'. The description also includes the first ascent details and the route length. Many of the crags offer long routes of 20m and above, although there are some smaller crags as well.

There are many excellent action photos across the full grade spectrum which really motivate me to visit. The area looks beautiful and the rock appears to be amazing quality. Just a few of the photos that have inspired me include N.Kodros on Tonosi (pg.46), V.Trolias on Ksifias (pg.87), C.Vrohidis on Darda Direct (pg.121), A.Papathanasiou on Si Fu (pg.141) and again on Molon Lave (pg.193), M.Schreiber on Delirio (pg.229) and G.Kirousis on Super Nova (pg.249).

The guide also includes a detailed crags chart and plenty of useful and interesting reading on ethics, flora and fauna, how to use the guide, grades and info on accommodation and local climbing walls.

This is a very inspirational guide and is obviously written by enthusiastic climbers with a passion for their area. It really sells the region and looks like a great alternative to escape the crowds at Kalymnos for those of us looking for some sunny sports climbing. The authors have done a great job and the guide deserves to sell well.

 

 

Fact File

 

Athens Climbing Guidebook

"The Athens Climbing Guidebook is the result of two and a half years of joint effort to collect information about the 33 most important sport climbing crags in Athens, Greece and to present it in a comprehensive book. Rock climbing in Athens, Greece has been acknowledged as some of the best in the country, similar to Kalymnos but more variable due to the presence of the ancient marble quarries. The guide presents the amazing opportunities for limestone tufa and marble rock climbing in the capital of Greece, a long kept secret that is finally out!"

 

Athens Climbing Blog

A new blog about climbing in Athens and Greece.

 

Routes.gr

This is an online guide for the Hellenic Mountains plus the most active forum for Greek climbers.

 

 

 

 

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