From the lush mountain village of Gerakari, Amari province, in Rethymno starts one of the trails that climbs Mount Kentros and attracts many walkers. But there is a second mountain trail unknown to most, the path leading from the village to the historic cave Chainospilios. This path was cleaned with an exemplary manner, while an explanatory sign that describes the path has been placed at its starting point.
The trail starts at location Kambou Steno and crosses the positions Habesis, Spartes Potamos, Skalia, Lidi, Mathiouli Mnima, Poros Klefti, Makre Haraki, Avdelare and finally Chainospilios . The course initially starts in a dirt road under the shade of cherry, walnut and maple trees. It reaches the river coming from the Gerakariano Gorge and has water all year round. After the river the course continues in a trail that crosses a beautiful forest of oak trees. The slope of the path is slightly uphill, not tiring. In the middle of the path the forest turns to the very characteristic limestone rocks of Kedros Mount. We meet a small spring with water and as we climb the view of Gerakari and villages of Amari is stunning.
At the end of the course we meet Chainospιlios, which is a very small cave with a small wall, formong a small room that barely fits some people. This cave was used by the shepherds of the region for cheese storage and maturation. This cave on May 6, 1944, hosted the German General Kreipe and the group of his British and Greek kidnappers, before moving to Patsos. Hiking to the cave from Gerakari takes about an hour.
Text: Christopher Chiladakis