|Date||Friday 17 November 2006|
|Distance stage||30,0 km|
|Distance acum.||2103,0 km|
|Quality of signs||Good|
|Quality of the hike||C (good): very steep hills, lot of trees|
I travelled to Slovakia for a four-day hiking trip. In Bratislava I take an early morning bus to the village Pezinok, and from there to Sedlo Baba (the official name of the bus stop is: Pezinok, Pezinska Baba Chata). During my previous trip I had very dense fog due to which I could not see anything while being on the Trail. Only on the day that I travelled back to Bratislava I had a clear blue sky and I could see that the surroundings are very nice. This morning I have to do it with that memory, as it is cloudy and foggy again, although not as bad as the last time I was here.
Todays stage is taking through forrests and woods, along trees and more trees. I am carrying a full backpack, as I have not been able to prepare various accomodations to stay for the nights during this trip. I am passing some camping sites, so perhaps I have to use my tent & sleepingbag. The weather is okay; for hiking in November the temperature is okay, and it is dry. The soil is muddy as it has been raining during the past few days. Immediately after the start the path is crossing steep hill sloopes. I am used to cover lots of differences in altitude, in the Alps, but what I experience here is different. When the path approaches a hill, or some other steep section, it just goes straight ahead up the hill; no curves or serpentines to make the slope easier for the hiker, no, just straight up the hill. It is very exhausting to walk like this for hours.
Due to the trees the views are not many or great. Descending from the Skalnata hill there is a nice glance at the Piesok village. The Male Karpaty Hills, or White Karpats, are pretty isolated from the civilized world. It’s not just that I hardly meet or see anyone all day, also the mobile phone has a limited coverage here. I estimate that only during 70% of the time I have sufficient coverage to have a telephone call. It makes more important to be on the safe side. The woods are in autumn condition, which means not much leaves left on the trees, hardly any animals around, and a grey sky all day long. During the afternoon the louds partly fade and I get a glance on the horizon where the rocks shine grey or white.
The highest climb of today is the Kapenna hill. I need to climb 450 meters to reach the top at 752 meters. There are some slippery sections, where slippery rocks peep from underneath the leaves. If you step on it without noticing you can slide easily. There’s no view from the Kapanna, and I continue my way down. At 5.10pm I arrive at Brezinky.
This is an area on the foot of the hills where some tourist facilities are situated, like a hotel and a camping site near a lake. There’s not much activity in November, apparently. I am satisfied with today’s performance, although I had hoped to be able cover more kilometers than the 30 that I did. Three more days to go, and they should bring more excitement than this first stage of the trip.