Wildflowers & Ice: Hiking Turkey’s Majestic Kackar Mountains
Join me for an epic trekking adventure into the beautiful Kackar Mountains in Eastern Turkey where raw wilderness and ancient lifestyles leave lasting memories.
I began my Kackar mountain journey walking up a dirt road towards lush green foothills from the small tourist town of Ayder. Passing the occasional deserted yayla next to a river swollen with fresh snow-melt.
Yaylas are small Turkish mountain villages inhabited by nomadic herders who bring livestock here to graze high pastures in spring summer months. Many were abandoned, a few showed signs of life as locals began returning with their animals.
In one such village, called Yukari Kavrun, I was startled to find a large angry bull blocking the road. I cautiously backed away until the snorting animal decided to harass a group of cows nearby while locals yelled and chased it down with ropes.
The people who live in these valleys come from all over. Their ancestors were originally from Armenia, Greece, Georgia, Russia, even Uzbekistan. They make a living herding cows and sheep; producing delicious cheese, yogurt, and the best honey in the world.