The water on Parnassos
The water on Mt Parnassos
springs, fountains and wells
Due of the extent of karst network of Mt. Parnassos, important water sources appear in many places, some of which provide water to the cities and villages of the mountain perimeter. Three of the largest sources spring in contact with the plain and create the main sources of Kifissos river, in Lilea, Polydrosos and Mavroneri respectively.
The springs of Kifissos river
Boeotian Kifissos is one of the strangest rivers in Greece: with a very short mountainous section and a level lowland course, it has paradoxically a lot of water; at the same time, it is the only important river to end into a large inland lake, the Kopais lake.
Kifissos river originates mainly from Mt Parnassos: its important springs are located at the eastern foot of the great mountain, in the zone from Davlia to Gravia. The most important among them are the great spring in Lilaia, the water "eye" in Agia Eleousa, nera Polydrosso, and the mostly unkown Mavroneri, near Davlia.
After a long journey in the level basin between Mt Parnassos and Mt Kallidromo, Kifissos river spreads to the Kopais area, into where the waters of the Melas river also flow, coming directly from the great karstic source of Mt Akontion, the source of Charites. After the lower of the Kopais water level and the construction of the long tunnel that drains the former lake, Kifissos river ends up at Yliki lake, supplying Athens.
On Mt Parnassos and its villages, the fountain is the converging point of the social web of the village. There is no village on Mt Parnassos without a large, public fountain with some place around it for the gathering of the villagers. An effort is made to build this public fountain in the main square of the settlement.
The upland wells
Although some areas of Mt. Parnassos, even above 2000m elev., have considerable springs, there are extended areas with few or no springs. In these areas, farmers have resorted solutions of gathering the water in ponds and wells. An interesting group of three wells and more particularly the Pigadi Panaghias well, the well in the Metochi meadow and the well at Aghios Nikolaos, are found in the waterless western side of the West Parnassos.
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