My first real climb was in Lefkas, Greece. This was in June 2011. I was having a one week holiday there and I had my mountain bike with me. All together I made four longer rides and they all included some climbs. But one ride was to the top of mountain Stavrota. The peak is at 1158 metres above sea level.
I started my climb from the village of Nikiana, which is on the Eastern bank of the Lefkas Island. My first goal was a small mountain village Alexandros, approx. at the height of 410 metres. The road from Nikiana was hard to find, because there was signs only on the other side of the road and they were covered with vegetation.
First leg was the hardest part of the climb. The road was very steep, weather was hot and there wasn´t any breeze. I was sweating a lot and I had to stop regularly to catch my breath. My heart rate was over 170 bmp. Stopping wasn´t a relief either. There was a lot of wasp´s and other insects flying around me, and I didn´t want to get beaten by one.
When I reached the Village of Alexandros the weather cooled down significantly and riding the bike was easier. Actually I was a little cold at first, because my jersey was all wet.
My second goal was Karia, approx. at the height of 510 metres. Karia is a nice little village, with some restaurants and shops. I stopped there to for some snack and refilled my Camelbak.
From Karia I still had about 600 metres to the top of mountain Stavrota. After Karia the climb was easier. Not that steep, and weather was cooler. Unfortunately I have no pictures from the top, because of restrictions on photography. There was some radar installations and two military barracs (one abandoned). After Karia I saw only one human on my way to the top. A lot of goats and many snakes.
My whole trip was 74 kilometres, of which half was climbing. Top speed was little less than 60 km/h and calory consuption was 3 260. I drank about 4 litres of water during 5 hours of riding.