Tuesday, 20 June 2017

My 19 Day Iranian Azerbaijan circuit - From the Caspian rives to Tabriz and Takht-e Soleiman - Day 8 (afternoon) - Kaleybar - Babak Fort - The 16th of May 2017

We set off in the afternoon to what would turn out to be a rather inspiring yet dangerous adventure - the "conquering" of  the narrow passageways leading to the Babak Fort on top of a mountain in the Arasbaran rangeland and forests.
To reach the first walking trail we had to drive on small 4x4 vehicles once the bus couldn't drive beyond a particular location.

Having been the stronghold of the leader of the Khurramites, Babak Fort stood proudly in the distance whilst looking down on those of us who risked hiking up to its summit. It was a rather painful and dangerous experience for many of us, though each covered the distance to the top of the jagged cliff at his or her own pace. I ventured together with Joelle and Moji throughout most of the journey up and having stopped several times on the way up took advantage of the surrounding landscape, which was mesmerising.

The historic setting also played a role in the way I looked at and felt the whole scenario setting, I must say. Babak Khorramdin, who reigned in the year 816-17 is said to have  been a highly spiritual person, known for not only respecting his Zoroastrian heritage but also fighting against the Caliphate and preserving the Persian language and Culture.

Although walking back down wasn't as difficut as it had been walking up, it required some precautions, so it ended up taking virtually the same time it had taken earlier and more so because we stopped to have a cup of tea somewhere along the way. 

I did enjoy this hiking experience despite having felt exhausted by the end of the day. Some of the landscape images surfaced several times over the following days, which clearly meant how important such an experience had been.


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