I'm going on a 10 day trip to Kalymnos this weekend with my university, safe to say I'm pretty excited but abit in the dark as to what to expect and how to make the most out of it. I started climbing last September so pretty new and can lead indoors 6a comfortably...7 on the right day. So I'm just wondering if anyone has any advice for me as to the best routes, things to do away from climbing, and/or what to expect when I'm out there??
Any replies welcome
In reply to DannyH001: Lower your grade expectations. Rock tends to feel "tougher" than indoors, even if the grading matches OK. Get on some 5 / 5+ for the first day at least.
Monahiki Elia is a classic 6a+ in the Grande Grotte. Very enjoyable but you might have a battle leading it, but go for it anyway.
To be honest there is not that much to do aside from climbing. The pretty side of the island is on the east, that's where you will at least see some greenery. But it's not really a place for scenic hiking. I would just climb if I were you. For a day off, go to Vlihadia in the south and snorkel around the bay.
I don't mean to be patronising btw. I have looked at the climbs in your profile and I think my comments are valid. I am all about "managing expectation". At this stage in your climbing, it is far better to go and enjoy some comfortable successes than to go and scrat around dogging your way up something that has a sexy grade beyond your capability.
Hi there. What to expect when you are out in Kalymnos? Well, I'd say you are virtually guaranteed a great time, especially if this is your first trip climbing in Europe. As Blue Straggler says, get started on some 5/5+s (but use your eyes, check the bolting/spacing from the ground… most routes on Kalymnos are very well equipped, but not all) and I think you'll find that you progress very quickly into the 6s. Please avoid Monahiki Elia, you'll only have to queue… in fact avoid the Grand Grotta this trip, don't be tempted to become one of the eternal optimists hanging off DNA. There are 100s of less 'hammered' 6a+s to try and certainly, if you feel you progress well during your trip, more sensible first outdoor 7as than DNA.
There are plenty of things to do on Kalymnos other than climbing. There are dozens of small beaches to explore (some are totally empty even in summer) and even though it's a bit chilly here at the moment (21-24 degrees), I saw people in the sea yesterday at Kantouni. There's also the diving school (which I believe is now open). As far as hiking goes, it's true that many of the 'paths' are tough-going, but going up to the top of Telendos, or Galatiani or Profitis Ilias (same height as Lakeland peaks, but from sea level) give great views across the Aegean islands. Nisyros volcano, Turkish mainland etc. There's caves if you're that way inclined, horse-riding, ancient castles at Hora and so on. The night life in the main villages is quite good too; there's a lot of people here at the moment, evening cruising between the four climbing shops, restaurants, bars etc is the norm.
In reply to carl dawson: I'd second Carl re avoiding Grande Grotta - I'd also avoid Odyssey. Summertime is good, though in the shade. If you have someone more experienced to do it with, Wings for Life on Telendos is a great route and really enjoyable multi-pitch experience.
In reply to DannyH001: I've been twice and both times my indoor grade has been a better indication of how I'll do than my outdoor grade although I had already got used to rock including limestone before I went.
Do some easy stuff but dont spend too long on sharp 5+ slabs, they can get a bit samey, painful and don't do much for confidence.
Dolphin bay might be a good bet, there are loads of non-sharp, juggy, easy things to start on (you just have to feel for the holds a bit) If you like steep indoors type stuff ( as mr t above says) Too Fat for Tufas and Roufos are great 6as (just remember to attach you're belayer to the bolt on the ground. Balaklava maniac is also a great technical face climbing 6b with a steep bit at the end.
Argononta is also a great crag. The 6b Avri in particular seems soft if you like jugs and is a good route. Argononta also has the best 5+ ever (now for something completely different) and amazing 6as and 6bs on hidden pockets with really friendly bolting.
I sort of agree that Odyssey can be a bit crowded, Argo navis is a good indoor style 6a but I didn't have the patience to wait for much else. If you find it packed you could just walk to Illiada though.
If you're managing 7a indoors then you might do well enough to make anything I can suggest a bit too easy, just stay safe and build up to it a bit. You certainly have time.
This is great info. Ill be sure to check out as many routes that have been recommended as poss within my ability. Tbh being busy doesn't really bother me, sure it eats into my climbing time abit but Im quite happy just chilling and chatting with people too.
In reply to DannyH001: I think the best bit of advice I can give is to try and avoid just bulk ticking tonnes of grey slab routes. There is variety out there even at the lower grades, you just have to look beyond the obvious in the guidebook.