• Christopher Mounsey

Hiking on Mt Varnoundas

Updated: May 8, 2020

On a mild December day we decided to set out for a long walk along the ridges of Mt. Varnoundas. Or Mt Varnous. Or Baba, or sometimes even Peristeri or Pelister. It depends who you ask!

Dhikorfo (2.113m) - Looking west over Lake Lesser Prespa. The island of Ayios Achillios to the right, and in the left, the lake turns and heads into Albania.

The mountain range divides the Pelagonia plain from Prespa, and today, with the low heat and blue skies, we wanted to take in the view of both the Great and Lesser Prespa lakes. Our route was more or less the European 'E6' long distance hike, which passes the through the village of Ayios Yermanos on it's way first to the peak of Dhikorfo at 2.113m (6,930ft). Here we'd stop for lunch, before leaving the E6 and taking a circular route back to Ayios Yermanos.

Looking south from Dhikorfo, into the valley of Korestia and the Lathopotamos river

The mountain is largely forested with beech, but also some oak and fir. On the northern slopes though, insider the Pelister National Park, it is home to the Molika pine (Pinus peuce), a Balkan endemic. Once above the tree line you're rewarded with fantastic views of the lakes from large, sub-alpine meadows and pastures. The flocks of sheep and their shepherds living amongst in bears, wolves, boars, roe deer and wildcat.

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