Sfakiano-Schlucht (Mitte Oktober 2018)
For the hike, I orientated myself on Simon's description of the route. It went up from Imbros over the gravel road towards Lakki. This is the old connection route from Imbros to Lakki, unfortunately nothing can be seen of the old connection route. The gravel road and the landscape are rather boring. Progress is slow and walking on the gravel (the stones that lie with us on the train tracks) doesn't make it any easier. It is not possible to drive on the gravel road with a car (4x4), as it is blocked with a chain. After 40 minutes I reached the top, at the beehives. Right it goes on to Trikoukia and left to Lakki. Up here I took a 10 minute break and enjoyed the view of the gorge and the surrounding area. From here you also have a beautiful view of the old connecting path from Kali Lakkoi to Agios Pavlos.
From the beehives it goes half-right down into the gorge. Ignore the branches to the right to Trikoukia and left to Lakki. After another 40 minutes I reached the bottom of the gorge. The gorge is crossed here, after 1 minute there is a short descent to the left into the gorge bed. After 15 minutes you reach the canyon bed. The gorge is very wide here, there are many trees and it is covered with rubble. Unfortunately, you walk on rubble the size of a fist or handball all the time, which is super annoying and exhausting. There is no way, you just have to look where you can go here. There are some colored markings and cairns to help.
Halfway through there is a water source on the right-hand side just before a bend, a blue canister stands in front of it. Reliably good water comes out of the tap. I didn't notice the other water sources, but I didn't look for them either.
After 2.5 hours (in between I took a 20 minute break) you will reach the walled junction to Chora Sfakion on the right. Straight ahead you would get to the concrete plant. Shortly after the junction to Chora Sfakion, there is the junction to the Imbros - Chora Sfakion road on the left. Overall, I was on the road for almost 5 hours with breaks.
From here we went back to Frangokastello by thumb. In Frangokastello, after the boring hike, there was a cold cyclist from the supermarket as a reward.
The Sfakiano Gorge is a lonely gorge, I haven't met anyone, but very monotonous. Walking on the scree is super annoying and I was happy when the hike finally came to an end. The landscape wasn't convincing either. I would not go the gorge again and would not recommend it (tastes are of course different).
I would definitely recommend, if you come from Niato or Trikoukia, not to continue the Safkiano Gorge, but to go to the road to Imbros and end the hike here. Or continue the hike via Kali Lakkoi and Skafidakia. There are several options here. The Sfakiano Gorge is simply too barren and difficult to walk through the scree.
Ta Leme, kv