Around Milos Expedition
Sep 28- Oct 3, 2006

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The Kanovereniging Keistad (Keistad canoe club),  of the Netherlands visited Milos in Sep/Oct 06 to Circumnavigate Milos and Kimolos in 7 days.  There were 8 in the Group:  Inge and Marcel, Peter and Brigitte, Ria, Maaike, Maarten, Dik, Oscar.

To the left is a digitised map with the actual GPS track log. Click on the image to enlarge.



Below is the Trip report, by Inge
(translated form original Dutch; see Dutch version )

Photos by Marcel, Oscar, Peter and Rod
Click on thumbnail image to enlarge photo


Tuesday 25 September (arrival at Milos).

On Milos we took a taxi to the place of Rod and Petrinela, just say you have to go to Petrinela and they know where to bring you. Rod wasn’t there yet, he was with a group paddling en would be back at 17.00. So we had time to look around and have some lunch.  

At 17.00 we met Rod in Petrinela's cafe for a group meeting.  He advised to take food and water for 3 days. That will be 5 bottles of water for each person. We went shopping for the food in the small shops that are around. We bought lots of food, will it fit in the kayaks? We will see tomorrow. In the evening we went to Plaka for a good meal. We even found a shop were we had the best ice-cream on the island.  We all went to bed early; we are going to paddle tomorrow!

Wednesday 26 September (first kayak-day). 

At last we are going to kayak. At 9 we have breakfast. The bread is nice and fresh. Better than the hotel we had in Athens.  At 10 we were all packed and we left with the car and kayaks to the water. First we had a stop at the bakery to get the bread for 3 days.  When we arrived at the sea we packed everything into the kayaks. We had enough room in the boats to put all of our water and food.

 Then we finally got on the water. The first part of today we saw some pretty caves where you can go in with your kayak. We were all very impressed.  At the first pause we dive into the water and had a swim. The temperature is very nice. The second part of the day there is some wind and we have to work a bit harder, but none of us has a problem with that.

At the resting place we gather some wood for the campfire tonight. And on the way to our camp place we stop another time to gather some more wood.  When we arrive at the camp site, we see that we are not alone. There is a resident Donkey waiting for us. We all think is a nice Donkey, but when he (or is it a she?) wants go on a walk with our clothes, we are not so amused. He even takes a bite out of Rod's food, a big Melon is not so big anymore…..

 We are having a BBQ this evening. The meat and the potatoes are roasted above the fire and we have some salad; a good meal!  After the meal we stay at the campfire drinking red wine and ouzo, before we go to bed.

Kimolos Camp - Day 1

Naughty donkey

BBQ Dinner

Breakfast table

Thursday 27 September (second kayak-day).

We woke up this morning and found out that it was a very naughty donkey. He opened the hatches of the kayaks and ate our bread and vegetables. So having a donkey around isn’t such a good idea after all But he (or she) didn’t find all our food so we could survive for at least for today and tomorrow.

We left on time to go to Poliegos where we will be camping tonight. We had to paddle a bit against the wind and had a lot of fun. Then Maaike called out that we were going to fast for her. Oops, we forgot, we don’t have all as much experience. Sorry Maaike, we won’t do that again and if we do, just say so and we will slow down for you.

At lunch we practised the re-entry, at home we call this the KIWI-method. We all could re-enter the kayak, no problem.  We also practised standing in the kayak, but were not all very well in it.  After lunch we left Kimolos and went to Poliegos. This took us an hour. Happily the wind was less, so that was nice paddling.

On Poliegos we had a short stop to gather some wood for the campfire. Marcel had to take the biggest piece there was, he was just showing off (again, just like last year when we were here).  At the campsite there was a beautiful beach with a bay. So we first took a bath in the sea and washed our hair with some shampoo. Feels a lot better.  There are some goats near, lets hope they won’t come to the campsite and eat the rest of our food….

Friday 28 September (Third kayak-day).

Today we got up at 7. Too bad, the sunset is not very pretty. The goats didn’t find our campsite, so we still have the rest of our food.  We kayak around Poliegos, find a nice beach and have a short break. Then we go back to Kimolos again. We pass some beautiful coastline which seem to change all the time.  We see some very white rocks. They were used for mining and were used for porcelain.

Just before we go to make the crossing to Kimolos we have a short break, a nice beach where we must swim again.  At the harbour of Kimolos we stop to go shopping. We need some supplies after the donkey experience. After the shopping we have lunch at a restaurant. It is nice to sit on a chair and eat from a table…..

After arriving at the campsite we have a swim to get rid of the sweat of the day.  This evening Maarten and Oscar will prepare the dinner. Maarten tries to get the sauce for 10 persons in one pan. He succeeds, but than the pan falls and a part of the sauce is on the sand. He manages to save enough for us to eat, but the food does grind a bit….Off course we have a campfire after diner and drink some ouzo and wine to celebrate our vacation. 

Saturday 30 September (fourth kayak-day).

Today Maarten was already up early. He put on the water and baked us eggs and bacon. The water was flat as a mirror. We left (again) on time. This time we leave for Milos again.  Our first stop was at a small place where there are some shops. We needed more water and bread for 3 breakfasts and 4 lunches. At the bakery we tried to get the bread. But the didn’t want to sell us all we wanted. It was too much. They wanted to keep some of the bread to sell on Sunday.

We were glad that there was a bit more wind now, without some wind it was quite warm. At lunch we stopped at an abandoned sulphur-mine. It is build around 1930 and closed around 1960 when the price of sulphur was too low. In one of the rooms we even found a complete bed with mattress and pillow.  Eventually we had to go on again. When we were all in the boats there was one left. Oops, dit we forget someone? Who do we miss? We missed Dik, where was he? He was just asleep, doing a nap and didn’t notice that we were leaving…. Almost forgot him….

After this stop we went to the sauna-cave. We just stopped at a small beach, were there was a nude couple.  After we arrived, they left the beach, it became too crowded for them.  From the beach you can swim to the cave. There is a natural sauna here, but it smells like sulphur. The higher you hold your hand in the cave, the hotter it becomes.  After the sauna-cave we went to the campsite. On the beach were we are going to sleep tonight there are three restaurants, so we are not cooking tonight. Rod is leaving for home tonight. We will see him again tomorrow morning.  We pick out a restaurant and have dinner there. Tonight we don’t have a campfire, so we went to bed early.

Sunday 1 October (fifth kayak-day).

This morning we got up early. Even before Rod arrived we were ready to go. We still didn’t have a lot of wind today. Today we are doing the rest of the south of the island. So we don’t have to deal with the wind yet.  We pass some caves. Some of them are so dark you need a torch to see at all in the cave.

We also pass some beautiful passageways. There are tunnels and arches were we go through.  A lot of pictures are taken.  When we stop at lunchtime we see a small boat, which is stopping there. It looks like the people have been fishing and they caught a lot of fish.  We are having a BBQ this evening and would like to have a fresh fish on the BBQ. So we ask Rod if it is possible to buy one of the fish. So he walks to the fisherman and returns with one of the fish. Didn’t cost him anything. Just a glass of ouzo in the bar. 

In the evening the fish ends up on the BBQ. And for the ones that don’t like fish there are sausages, greek salad, roasted potatoes and bread toasted and then put in olive-oil and a bit of oregano.

Rod is having an experiment. He wants to bake bread on the fire.  He has some flour,  mixes it with water and puts in a pan. Then he digs a hole and puts some hot charcoal in the hole. Then he puts the pan in the hole on top of the hot charcoal.  Then he covers it all with sand. Tomorrow we will see if it worked.  It seems that there will be a lot of wind tomorrow, but we will see that tomorrow. 

Monday 2 October. (sixth kayak-day)

The bread was a great success - It looked good and it also tasted good.  And we had bacon and eggs for breakfast.  Today everyone was ready very fast. We got up at 7 and at 8.30 we were on the water.

Indeed, there was more wind today. So the sooner we are on the water, the better it is. As soon as we go around the corner, there are more and bigger waves.The first part is fun to do. There is a lot more wind, but the waves are not to bad and the wind is no problem.  When we kayak, we see some very pretty places. We also see tunnels where we paddle through. It is all so pretty here.

The wind is getting stronger and the waves are getting bigger. We stop in a small bay to regroup en catch our breath. It is another 100 meters to the resting place. Rod and some others are going to take a look at the resting place. The rest will remain here until Rod comes back to get them. I also wait here, but Rod signals to me, I also have to go with the first group. Ok, I am coming.

We are going through a small passage, which is nice. Then I see the sea. Wow those waves are really big! Must be at least 2 meters high. I follow the rest of the group. But I don’t really like it, those waves are very big and the wind is very strong out here.

Fortunately Brigitte and Peter followed so I wait for them to give me some moral support. Then I enter the Laguna. There is no wind and we can catch our breath here. When everyone has arrived, Rod tells them this wasn’t the plan. The second group should have waited until he came back to get them. But it all went all right.

The next part we really have to paddle as a group. Don’t leave anyone behind. We try, really, we do. But with those big waves, we are only trying to get forward against the wind, we don’t have time and the guts to look backwards. So at the end we get split into two groups. I end up in the first group and we arrive at the beach first. It takes almost half an hour for the rest to arrive. But we all made it.

A number of us is very tired. So we decide we have had enough for one day. Tomorrow there should be less wind. We will see were we are going tomorrow. It all depends on the wind. Today we had a force 6. And we had to paddle against it. To paddle 6 km we needed 3 hours of paddling!

In the evening we make some pasta. Rod tries to bake another bread. But this time he uses flower without the yeast. So we tell him it will not work. But he doesn’t believe us and tries to make the bread anyway. We will see the result tomorrow.

Rod phones home to ask for the weather-forecast. They are good. We will start with force 4 and will end with force 2. We decide to try to make the round of the island complete and end the trip were we started it.

 Tuesday 3 October (last kayak-day).

This morning we get up early. If we want to finish the tour were we started it, we have to be at the water at 8. There is not very much breakfast anymore, no eggs, no bacon and Rods bread is a failure, so we are on the water at 8.

It all looks so quiet now. So we think we can make it. There are some waves, but they are not as big as yesterday and there isn’t much wind either. To be back in time we need to paddle 20 km today. So not many stops and they also don’t last too long.

We take a break at a beach where there used to be a manganese-mine. It was closed around 1925. Too bad we don’t have more time here, I would have like to have a look around here. But we have to go on

The second stop is on a nice sandy beach. So we take a swim there, the last one this vacation. We have our last lunch at the beach.  Then the last part to get back to our starting point.  We made it, we rounded Milos, Kimolos and Poliegos. Our kayaking-trip is over. We have to get back to the civilised world again. 

It was a very nice week. For Marcel and me it was the second expedition here. We liked it so much last year we motivated our friends at the kayak-club to go here. And they all had a wonderful time. Maaike and Ria have improved there kayaking-skills. They paddle so much better now.  It was a fantastic week and we all enjoyed it. Maybe next year again? Another trip? Maybe we will do the Milos-Santorini trip then.

Rod, thanks for this wonderful week!

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