When Chioni, the Greek goddess of snow Visited Kalymnos

It was 6:20 in the morning, the alarm clock was sounding furiously. I had already prepared my backpack, with all the necessary equipment: camera, tripod, snacks, water; best not delay!. The weather report talked about an unprecedented cold front touching our area for the first time in years, possibly bringing snow, something I had not seen in the island since 1982

 I left the house, the cold was biting, intense but bracing. I looked towards Prophet Elias, the highest mountain on the island, and through the darkness I could see a white veil of snow spread over the Castle, the middle mountain range, & beyond to Arginota, & Vathi.  I checked my camera in the freezing cold, the one that I had nearly lost some 40 years back: everything was working!

From Stemenia I took the path to Milianos; I wanted to see the view from The Heights overlooking TELENDO. The fresh snow, lay like a white carpet, deep in places but sparse elsewhere. Old haystacks & paddocks, loaded with the white icy water of nature, looked unrecognizable. The snow-covered tracks in front of me had seen this white covering many times, since the islands birth, & the covering of snow seemed to float across the dark waters,  the absence of warm colours, creating  a magical, mystical painting; the white accentuating the shadows.

I took the return path to the right of the ravine, the contrast of the reddish rock was beautiful; I thought it would make an amazing climbing route; my first thoughts, confirmed 3 months later when a group of Swiss climbers named it ‘Griffin’.

 I went down by the stream; to the back of the Prophet Elias, the native cypress trees hanging beautiful, like a sculpture with a covering of snow & icicles: the white accentuating the wildness of the landscape. I stood there surveying the view, changing lenses, taking pictures of this rare & unique view of my island home: the snow stayed only for three days in the northern fields, but my memories have lasted for ever.


Story: Stathis Klimis
Translation: Brian Glanville

Photographs: Stathis Klimis

When Chioni, the Greek goddess of snow Visited Kalymnos

Prints available to purchase in the Kalymnos Moments Store

Arrival Agios Konstantinos

The Departure