Annie Bananie en Europe

A blog about travel, life, and everyday tidbits

Tag Archives: hill

Sunset from Mount Lycabettus

Sometimes a city doesn’t have to be super glamorous or impressive to earn a ★ on my travel checklist – perhaps a simple yet stunning sunset will do, and that was the case with Athens. It was a fulfilling week in the Greek capital with the annual European Society of Biomaterials conference, and certainly the most memorable part, aside from the conference itself and my amazing companion, was the sunset on Mount Lycabettus tonight, the highest point in Athens. I want to say that all sunsets are beautiful, but some are more beautiful than others. To expect clouds to add some more colours at this time of the year might be wishful thinking, but I gotta say – sorry Santorini, you have nothing on Lycabettus. It was a magical dusk, not a moment too late to marvel at God’s spectacular creations. The cradle of western civilization, the birthplace of philosophy, democracy, the Olympics, and more – good night, Athens.

Sunset from Mount Lycabettus, the highest point in Athens, on September 7, 2017.

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The hills are alive…at Loch Lomond!

This post is waaaaaaaaaaay overdue.

You see, I went for a hike on Conic Hill near Loch Lomond at the end of June, enjoyed it so much, and was so excited about writing a blog related to the experience. Alas, more than three months have gone by and still no blog post. I am a procrastinator!!

If Kinnoull Hill was my introduction to hill walking, then Conic Hill was what made me fall in love with this activity. I am aiming for the West Highland Way in the upcoming years and some real mountains eventually, possibly some Scottish Munros, but hill walking will get my training started nicely and slowly. Having searched the nearby Loch Lomond, I saw that many people have suggested trying Conic Hill before taking on the real beast of the Munro, especially for the inexperienced, which clearly referred to me. So one very sunny Saturday morning, I packed my backpack and my camera, hopped onto a very early train to Balloch (hills have the power to wake me up at 6:30 in the morning on a weekend, which is impressive), took a bus to Balmaha, and promptly started my solo ascent to Conic Hill at 9am.

At an elevation of approximately 350 m, Conic Hill is a gentle climb and rather straightforward. The hill could be done as part of the West Highland Way (the Way), but since I was climbing it without doing the Way, I think I can skip it when I actually take on the Way in its entirety (though the views on Conic Hill were so impressive, as you will see, that I may contemplate repeating the route). The ascent was slow and steady with some gradual changes in elevation at the beginning, but be not fooled! Past the well-shaded foresty patches, the slopes suddenly became very steep quite quickly, and never-ending steps seemingly appeared out of nowhere in front of me. Oh, I knew I was in for a very sweaty workout, alright!

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