Leaders: Bob & Rannveig Wallis
The Merlin Trust and the AGS are collaborating again to offer two fully funded places on the trip to the Taurus Mountains for more information please contact The Merlin Trust or follow the link below.
Dates - April 4th – April 18th
Cost - £2350 . Land Tour - £1970
Single Supplement - £240
This tour is designed to show the incredible diversity of bulbous species as we criss-cross this scenically inspiring mountain range. Situated near to the Mediterranean coast of Turkey, the mountains have a warm south-facing side which receive little snow cover at low altitude yet the high passes convey one into to the much colder and drier steppe zone and the flora has evolved differently on the two sides. Coupled with this, the diversity of rock types and the separation of peaks by deep valleys has allowed considerable endemism to develop. New species are still being described from here and one objective of the tour will be to find such recent novelties e.g. Fritillaria sororum and Tulipa cinnabarinum.
The tour will start in Antalya, journeying north-westward via the Pisidian city of Termessos to see some of the lesser known sites for the serpentine flora (Fritillaria serpenticola, Muscari muscarimi) south of Denizli. The famous blue Crocus (C baytopiorum) is also quite common here as is Cyclamen alpinum , which should still be in flower at high altitude. We will then travel eastwards via the imposing ancient city of Sagalassos (also Pisidian) to stay by the fabulous lakeside of Eǧirdir. From here we will cross the mountains to catch Crocus species etc in the snow melt on our way to Beyşehir. A walk on the limestone south of here should yield some good flowers (Crocus, Colchicum, Fritillaria and Scilla) before we go eastwards again via numerous high passes to explore the Taşkent, Ermenek, Gülnar and Mut region which is full of rare plants such as Fritillaria assyriaca subsp melanathera, F acmopetala subsp wendelboi, F persica in its westernmost station, and the glorious blue Alkanna aucheriana. Heading north eastwards again, we can get on the north side of Bolkar Daǧ, the home of Iris danfordiae, Muscari massayanum with its striking pink coma over yellow flowers and the most westerly place we know for Tulipa humilis. Our final stop over will be near to the imposing Ala Daǧ famous for its Crocus siehianus, Fritillaria aurea, Scilla ingridae and Muscari azureum. It is here that a kaleidoscope of Anemone blanda colours have escaped the woodlands and become alpine plants studding the hillsides amongst the other bulbs. We aim to return from Kayseri.
The majority of the roads are now asphalt although some good quality forestry roads will need to be negotiated. The tour will be in a small bus, which will make frequent stops at suitable sites. It is not envisaged that we will go above 2500m, but there will still be plenty of snow about and the terrain is likely to be both rough and steep. Where possible we will use 3* hotels but the tour will take us to some less touristy areas where hotels are not so well appointed.
For further information please contact
the AGS Centre, Pershore. tel - 01386 554790 or email firstname.lastname@example.org