The Carian Trail – Stormy Weather in Southwest Turkey

Hiking and the Obsession with Weather; When hiking the Carian Trail doesn’t start the way we’d like to.

There is no denying: any outdoor event or activity can be made or broken by the weather. Ambivalent as I am about technological gadgets, I’m not sure that weather apps are a good development. Do they prevent you from setting out and getting soaked (or into a potentially life-threatening situation), or do they keep you put unnecessarily?

I wake to the noise of rain splashing on the road with force. This is not a light splash; it’s a raging storm. My denial is now officially useless.

Yesterday, when Coen showed the weather forecast and suggested staying put until the bad weather had passed I refused to listen. After all, the sky was blue, the sun was out and besides, how often is the weather forecast correct anyway?

I even admitted it, “I am in denial; I’m confident the weather will be just fine.”

And so I was set on making the last preparations – such as buying vaseline and cotton pads after I had incidentally read on the Internet the combination works as a fire starter (useful especially with wet wood).

During breakfast Coen scrolls once more through pages filled with icons of clouds and rain for the next 3 days. Starting an 850-km hike in that kind of weather is about as off-putting as it can get. We book our room for an additional 2 nights.

About the moment we pay, the rain lets up and the first rays of sun peek through still dark clouds. Did we just make a mistake? Shouldn’t we be packing our bags and get going?

The solution when in such doubts: coffee!

With our hotel having only Nescafe we had out for a coffee shop near the waterfront but end up in the shopping mall. On the second floor is a food court with all we need: chairs, electricity, affordable food, and good coffee (ordering ‘black coffee’ means you get Nescafe; if you want the proper stuff from the espresso machine, order ‘Americano’ if you want a regular cup of black coffee).

We lose ourselves in our Kindles filled with new books, one called Ayse’s Trail, about a Turkish woman’s two-week hike on the Lycian Trail. In between I stare outside, across the bay hemmed in by forested hills. Sunshine still filters through the clouds, coloring streaks of water in clear blue tinges.

The wind helps to clear the sky right along the waterfront. But there is no denying: on both sides of the bay, where the hills stretch into the hinterland the clouds are ominously black, often obscuring any outlines of the hilltops.

It is with relief when about two hours later a storm hits our world. A sky turned black and the wind lashing the rain against the windows and throwing it onto the balcony that surrounds the food court. The waves grow with the minute, the tops turning white. The storm comes and goes throughout the rest of the day.

We look at each other with a sense of satisfaction: we’ve made the right choice to stay put.

About the Weather in Southwest Turkey

Yesterday we left Antalya, which a few days ago was hit by a tornado, killing at least two persons. Storms are usual this time of year; tornadoes are not. According to the owner of our hotel. This winter is longer and colder and wetter than usual.

Let’s see what the climate (change) has in store for us the coming 10 weeks.

Update: Day 2 starts promising, but does it stay that way?

Practical Information

  • The Carian Trail is an 850-km-long hiking trail along the Southwest Coast of Turkey.
  • We are hiking without laptops. The pictures are snapshots I take on my iPhone and new on this hike is a foldable keyboard. After a day of diary typing, I can say I’m very happy with this purchase.
  • Here’s the hiking gear list with what we’re carrying on our backs for the next two months.

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