Sunday, June 2, 2013

June 2 Cappadocia

Cam signed us up for a 4 hour guided quad tour of some of the valleys in Cappadocia.  The scenery is remarkable. Sam rode with Cam; the girls and I each had our own machines. There were a couple of narrow spots, and sharp steep hills that gave me pause, but I only asked the guide for help once.  I was very proud of myself! I have the least ATV experience of the girls and Cam. I almost opted out of the experience, but am glad I went. The quadding was a challenge, but we saw a lot in those 4 hours.

If you squint just a little it looks like the badlands around Drumheller, Alberta
You'll notice in the photos I never get off the machine ... it's because the parking brake didn't work!

Aren't we cute in our helmets!

The holes you see are man made.
A church (one of many) carved into stone.

Some of the churches are protected and guarded.  Many are not. Some were turned into pigeon houses by the Ottomans who followed the Byzantines into the region.  Many of the frescoes are literally defaced. The faces of the saints have been scratched out. Here you can still see crosses on the walls.

Royal burial site inside the church.

More tombs for the royal family.

This church was a steep scramble up - up.  You can see (almost one of three crosses on the ceiling.)  Cam remained below.  The kids and the guide and I made the trek up and down.

The small niches on the right side are the remains of pigeon houses.

The stone is very soft.  There were a couple of cm's of dust on the floor.  The dust is very slippery.

In church. Cam on the ground far below.

Our guide in purple. He gave us a good tour.  Like many Turkish men, he can smoke, drive, and answer his cell at the same time. Beware!

Looks like a ranch right?

I was grateful nobody needed the protection of these helmets - they were pretty shoddy.  And why'd I get the pink one?

Lots of steep ups and downs.  This one was mild compared with some. My horse slipped and slid quite a bit.

As with all dude rides, the horses have an order they prefer.  We were told to keep our spots.  Not hard for my horse who made it plain from the beginning she didn't even want to go. We were last.

Johanna on "Lumpkin".

Nicole astride Luna.

Cam on "Knothead".

See how far behind we are?

We road to the top of Cauvusin Castle.  Our hotel was across the road from this amazing site.

Moments after this photo was taken - atop Cauvusin Castle, Sam's horse got between Johanna's and Nicole's.  Johanna's horse kicked Nicole's with both hind feet. Nicole lost her left stirrup.  I was at the back of course, powerless to do anything but watch while Nicole's horse shied and side-stepped.  We all thought they were going over the cliff edge. By the grace of God, Nicole regained her lost stirrup and control of her horse, Johanna got control of her mount and we headed back down hill.  Halfway down on the steepest narrowest part of the path we met a horse group coming up.  They waited patiently for all to pass, except Pokey and I.  Pokey of course was delighted to see other horses and decided to do a u-turn and go back up the hill with them. I don't win every battle, but I won that one. 

1 comment: