Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Georgia - Part 3: Lalkhori to Ambrolauri

Georgia 02. - 10.08.2022

Time is flying and civilization has us back - with all its amenities but also the noise, garbage and polluted air. We arrived in Ambrolauri after some beautiful days in the high mountains. While we often camped at over 2500 m elevation, we descended to about only 500 m elevation today. We are making our way from the higher, to the lower Caucasus.

But now from the beginning: 

We tried to hitch from Mestia to Lalkhori and ended up in a tour of 4 Russian, paying a little money for the lift. Sadly they all (including their guide) spoke only Russian or Georgian, but we made a little stop at a touristy tower and another one for pictures... Not long after starting hiking, we stopped in Khalde for a cold drink. Seems like we were infected by the luxury life in Mestia ;)

As usually, I will let the pictures speak for themselves, to show you our tour of the last few days:

A little natural shower, but not for me! I don't like cold water ;)

Some old shepherd huts protected us from a shower

Another beautiful camping spot

The vegetation is insanely high - but often its lots of flowers ;)

Over a pass we went...

... but stayed only shortly due to roaring thunder...

...and down we went, but stayed dry!


After a quick stop under an umbrella of a Café due to some rain, we went up the valley on a little path...

... and up!

Looking back down into the valley 

So beautiful *sigh*

Yummy - warm dinner

As usually, another high and beautiful camping spot!

We camped close to the lake!

Up on another pass...

...with beautiful views!

Down to the road on a nice ridge

We met Birgit and Rainer from Germany, who traveled since 3 months from Germany to Georgia! They gave us food and drinks and we talked for hours... - such a nice coincidence!

We walked on a dirt road, but the views were still amazing!

Zhesko, an old village - as in most places, the houses are abandoned. But not much later we passed a border control station, where we got issued a permit to walk in the area.

And then we met the trail building crew of the  Transcaucasian Trail (TCT) - Nini welcomed us and answered several of our questions

The trail building crew did an incredible job!!!

The trees (as the vegetation) are gigantic 

And then we reached the end of the newly built trail and are back in the vegetation.

We followed a spur of some people up and discovered the TCT-crew, who did a daywalk up onto the ridge above the pass.

We followed the small ridge...

... to a little lake. A beautiful spot, which became our campspot for 2 nights, as we decided to change our hiking plans. The ridge that looked easy on the map, seemed too narrow and the vegetation offtrail is insane. So we decided to walk back and take an established route!

We did a little day trip up a ridge, but as the day before, we had thunderstorms and rain in the afternoon.

On the way back, we decided to take a slightly different route back down into the valley, going offtrail - so we ended up in bushes...

... and high vegetation.... well as more than head high nestles :/

But we made it back onto the road...

... which turned into a real road!

Another thunderstorm stopped us early and we camped by the road, picking up 2 dogs...

I found this strange animal on my arm!

Walking towards some small villages

Up another valley towards a pass!

We were stopped early again by rain and thunderstorms!

But later in the evening the clouds lifted and we had a beautiful look back onto the snowy mountains of the high Caucasus

Our camp spot in the river valley

There is still a little bit snow

Tbebi lakes - a wonderful area for some day hiking, but we decided to continue over the pass

Sorry, for all the pictures, but I just couldn't get enough of this amazing view - especially up on the pass of over 3000 m elevation :)

Walking down on the other side

First we walked on a small path...

... then we came to a huge and muddy logging road

The truck with the wood had a flat tire and the driver slept in the truck, waiting for a "new" tire - we saw the "new" tire, which had no profile at all!!!

In the evening we sleep below 1000 m elevation - very unusal for us! And we are always bothered by thousands of midges, during the day the horseflies try to bite...

Since we descended a lot, we found tons of blackberries, which slowed us down ;)

"Working" and relaxing in the garden of our guest house in Ambrolauri

Khinkalis for dinner - we ate 20 of them :)

No comments:

Post a Comment